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Girls to the Front: The True Story of the Riot Grrrl Revolutionby Sara Marcus
Synopses & Reviews
Girls to the Front is the epic, definitive history of Riot Grrrl — the radical feminist uprising that exploded into the public eye in the 1990s and included incendiary punk bands Bikini Kill, Bratmobile, Heavens to Betsy, and Huggy Bear. A dynamic chronicle not just a movement but an era, this is the story of a group of pissed-off girls with no patience for sexism and no intention of keeping quiet.
"A Brooklyn-based journalist gives a brash, gutsy chronicle of the empowering music and feminist movement of the early 1990s led by young women rock groups like Bikini Kill and Bratmobile. Politicized by such national events as the backlash against feminism in the press, the first Iraq War, and the Supreme Court's gearing up to review Roe v. Wade, young women were incensed. Kathleen Hanna, a college student from Olympia, Wash., was spurred to action after interviewing writer Kathy Acker and working for a domestic violence shelter, and she decided to start a band. Hanna, along with Tobi Vail, a fanzine writer (Jigsaw) and former punk rocker who was dating Nirvana's Kurt Cobain, were on a mission to spread female rebellion via their band, Bikini Kill. Meanwhile, Allison Wolfe and Molly Neuman, who had met at the University of Oregon, were in Washington, D.C., cobbling together their own band, Bratmobile. Thus, writes Marcus in this compelling account, the Grrrl Revolution was sparked. Marcus enthusiastically tracks the 'scattered cartographies of rebellion' and captures the combustible excitement of this significant if short-lived moment. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)
"A historical rockument of the revolutionary 90s counterculture Riot Grrrl movement....A rousing inspiration for a new generation of empowered rebel girls to strap on guitars and stick it to The Man." Allison Wolfe
"Ambitious and convincing....Girls to the Frontmakes narrative sense out of events that had so far been recorded only in mythic, unverified, and fragmentary form." HTMLGIANT
"One hell of an empowering read....A scorching history of the Riot Grrrl movement....There's inspiration here. Read this book and feel it — a renewed energy, in talking about the roles women play in the scenes that we live in today." Eileen Myles
"Stirring....Eloquent....Like Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain did in Please Kill Me...Sara Marcus's Girls to the Front tells the story of riot grrrl, one person at a time." John Landis, director of Trading Places and The Blues Brothers
"A painstakingly researched and well thought-out tribute to a punk feminist era Sara Marcus clearly holds dear....It should be heralded as an uncannily insightful revelation of the motivations and inner-workings of Riot Grrrl." Kim Gordon
“For a Second Wave feminist like myself, Girls to the Front evokes wonderfully the way the generation after mine soaked up the promise and the punishment of feminist consciousness....A richly moving story.” —Village Voice writer Vivian Gornick
Girls to the Front is the epic, definitive history of the Riot Grrrl movement—the radical feminist punk uprising that exploded into the public eye in the 1990s, altering Americas gender landscape forever. Author Sara Marcus, a music and politics writer for Time Out New York, Slate.com, Pos, and Heeb magazine, interweaves research, interviews, and her own memories as a Riot Grrrl front-liner. Her passionate, sophisticated narrative brilliantly conveys the story of punk bands like Bikini Kill, Bratmobile, Heavens to Betsy—as well as successors like Sleater-Kinney, Partyline, and Kathleen Hannas Le Tigre—and their effect on todays culture.
About the Author
Sara Marcus is a write and musician living in Brooklyn, New York. Her prose and poetry have appeared in publications including Slate, Time Out New York, The Advocate, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and Heeb, where she was the politics editor for five years. Marcus received an MFA from Columbia University.
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