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This Book Is an ActionFeminist Print Culture and Activist Aesthetics$
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Cecilia Konchar Farr and Jaime Harker

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780252039805

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252039805.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use.date: 28 June 2022

Feminist Publishing/Publishing Feminism

Feminist Publishing/Publishing Feminism

Experimentation in Second-Wave Book Publishing

(p.23) Chapter 1 Feminist Publishing/Publishing Feminism
This Book Is an Action

Jennifer Gilley

University of Illinois Press

This chapter explores two case studies that each illustrate an attempt to infuse feminist politics into the economically driven apparatus of book publishing: Sisterhood Is Powerful (1970) and This Bridge Called My Back: Writings by Radical Women of Color (1981). Exploring the publication history of Sisterhood Is Powerful provides a landmark case study of feminist experimentation in publishing that was inevitably fraught with controversy due to the ideological struggles of the time over economic and political “purity.” This Bridge Called My Back was published under an unusual type of contract in which contributors, rather than receiving a one-time payment at the beginning, would continue to receive payments for every ten thousand copies sold. Overall, these studies show the variety of ways in which feminists tried to get around the “taint” of publishing's relationship to the power structure in order to enact a feminist sensibility not just in the content of their writing but also in its production and dissemination.

Keywords:   feminist politics, feminist publications, Sisterhood Is Powerful, This Bridge Called My Back, book publishing

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