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caroline-harrison eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Bad Feminist is a collection of essays that touch on a variety of topics including popular culture, politics, sexuality, and her own personal experiences. Some of the essays had been previously published, and Gay wrote some of them specifically for the book. The book contains thirty-seven essays in total, which are grouped into five categories: “Me”; “Gender & Sexuality”; “Race & Entertainment”; “Politics, Gender, and Race”; and “Back to Me.” In “Me,” Gay discusses her personal life, including her experiences as a young teacher. In “Gender & Sexuality,” Gay discusses a range of topics from how to maintain positive female friendships to sexual violence to sexism and the notion of “likeability.” In “Race & Entertainment,” Gay examines how race is portrayed (often problematically) in media and popular culture. “Politics, Gender, and Race” contains several essays that articulate Gay’s political views on issues ranging from abortion rights to racially-motivated murders. In her final section, “Back to Me,” Gay fully explains what she means when she calls herself a “bad feminist” and argues that it is better to be a “bad feminist” than to not be one at all. 

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