60s feminist novels (2 posts)

Wed, 10 Apr 1996 09:09:20 -0400

Sender: rsillima@ix.netcom.com (Ron Silliman)
Subject: Re: 60s feminist novels

Michael Bibby,

It's not fiction exactly, but I hope you will include Judy Grahn's
Edward the Dyke (originally published around 70 or 71 in Edward the
Dyke and Other Poems). Its use of prose _as poetry_ proved to be a
major formal innovation -- totally different from what the likes of a
Robert Bly (who was wearing Navajo blankets to his readings during that
period) was doing and it was one of the founding works around which a
distinctly lesbian audience was created within the poetry scene. I
believe it can still be found in _The Work of a Common Woman_ from St.
Martin's Press.

Also, do say hello to John Taggart (whose active promotion of George
Oppen and Louis Zukofsky during that decade had a huge impact on
American poetry, bringing in all that forgotten late modernism with
left (even Stalinist) poetics, filling in the vast gap between Pound
and Williams and the New American poets of the 50s) for me.

Ron Silliman


Sender: roscoe@halcyon.com (Stu Shiffman and Andi Shechter)
Subject: Re: 60s feminist novels

Any suggestions?
>Two stipulations: it has to be American, published between 1960-1972, and
>preferably fairly short--the seminar meets for only 5 weeks.

You're gonna hate me because the recommendation I have is anything but
short, but for my money, the best feminist novel to show those times is
Marge Piercy's Small Changes. Published originally in 72,it looks like (I
have a hc, but can't reach it so I'm looking at an old pb copy); but it's
over 500 pages. She's the best feminist novelist of the time, I think, but
then, I hated The Women's Room, so take it from there.

I'd love to know what you end up with.
Andi Shechter,