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Push Comes to Shove : New Images of Aggressive Women - Maud Lavin

Push Comes to Shove

New Images of Aggressive Women

Hardcover Published: 20th August 2010
ISBN: 9780262123099
Number Of Pages: 312
For Ages: 18+ years old

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In the past, more often than not, aggressive women have been rebuked, told to keep a lid on, turn the other cheek, get over it. Repression more than aggression was seen as woman's domain. But recently there's been a noticeable cultural shift. With growing frequency, women's aggression is now celebrated in contemporary culture--in movies and TV, online ventures, and art. In "Push Comes to Shove," Maud Lavin examines these new images of aggressive women and how they affect women's lives. Aggression, says Lavin, is necessary, large, messy, psychological, and physical. Aggression need not entail causing harm to another; we can think of it as the use of force to create change--fruitful, destructive, or both. And over the past twenty years, contemporary culture has shown women seizing this power. Lavin chooses provocative examples to explore the complexity of aggression: the surfer girls in "Blue Crush"; Helen Mirren as Jane Tennison in "Prime Suspect"; the homicidal women in "Kill Bill" and artist Marlene McCarty's mural-sized "Murder Girls"; the erotica of Zane and the art of Kara Walker; the group dynamics of artists (including the artists group Toxic Titties) and activists; and YouTube videos of a woman boxer training and fighting. Women need aggression and need to use it consciously, Lavin writes. With "Push Comes to Shove," she explores the crucial questions of how to manifest aggression, how to represent it, and how to keep open a cultural space for it.

A timely, insightful look at contemporary representations of women's aggression and their impact on women's real lives.... Accessible, engaging, and grounded in reality. It's a uniquely useful book, one that provides a dynamic framework that could encompass explorations of an even wider range of women's aggression, such as roller derby or Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. Here's hoping that Lavin's work pushes more critics and writers to undertake those explorations.

-Bitch magazine
...Lavin is well-versed in this kind of interdisciplinary negotiation and...handles the task of juxtaposing seemingly disparate media eloquently and efficiently.

-Art Journal * Reviews *
A timely, insightful look at contemporary representations of women's aggression and their impact on women's real lives.... Accessible, engaging, and grounded in reality. It's a uniquely useful book, one that provides a dynamic framework that could encompass explorations of an even wider range of women's aggression, such as roller derby or Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. Here's hoping that Lavin's work pushes more critics and writers to undertake those explorations.

-Bitch magazine * Reviews *

ISBN: 9780262123099
ISBN-10: 0262123096
Series: The MIT Press
Audience: General
For Ages: 18+ years old
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 312
Published: 20th August 2010
Publisher: MIT Press Ltd
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 20.3 x 13.7  x 2.4
Weight (kg): 0.45