Reading on the Fringe

I’ve noticed my book cases are dominated by dead white men. Going a step further, I’d say dead, heterosexual, Anglo-Saxon men. This shouldn’t come as a shock seeing how the publishing industry has been historically dominated by WASPy dudes. But it’s a new dawn and a new day, and I’m changing things up.

It’s not good enough to bemoan the absence of alternative voices; you have to go out of your way to support it. Thus, I’ve decided that for every WASPy dude that I read, I’ll read something by an alternative voice, be it a woman, a homosexual, or a non-Anglo-Saxon. For example, the next book I’m planning to read is House of Leaves by Mark Danielewski. After that I think I’ll read “A Cyborg’s Manifesto” by Donna Haraway.

Here are some more authors and texts I’d like to read:

Margaret Atwood – Alias Grace.

I’m embarrassed to have only lately gotten on the Atwood bandwagon. As an undergrad, I read Morning in the Burned House, a collection of poetry. However, in December I finally read The Handmaid’s Tale, and loved it. Subsequently, I read Oryx and Crake and The Year of the Flood. I’m also itching to read The Blind Assassin.

Edward Said – Orientalism

I read a chunk of Orientalism as undergrad and have been meaning to read the full book for years. If you’re unfamiliar with the book, it’s basically a deconstruction of the west’s depiction of the east.

Chinua Achebe – Things Fall Apart

Aside from Albert Camus, I don’t think I’ve read anything by an African, let alone a black African. I’ve read books about Africa by white guys, though. Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness comes immediately to mind, whom Achebe called “a thoroughgoing racist.”

Virginia Woolf – “A Room of One’s Own”

I love Woolf’s fiction. Mrs. Dalloway is one of my favorites. “A Room of One’s Own” is Woolf’s manifesto for creating a space for female literature.

Michel Foucault – The History of Sexuality

I read Madness and Civilization and loved it. Foucault’s approach to history is a great mix of Freud, Marx, and Nietzsche. Foucault was a homosexual sado-masochist, so I’m intrigued to learn more of his thoughts on sexuality.

 

These are just a few titles I pulled off the top of my head. If you’ve read any of these books and would like to comment, or suggest other titles, I’d love to hear from you.

Cheers,

Brad

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~ by braddunne on August 25, 2013.

2 Responses to “Reading on the Fringe”

  1. Things Fall Apart was a great read for me. Enjoy!

  2. I hope you like Things Fall Apart. It is a great read.

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