Read Quiet Rumours: An Anarcha-Feminist Reader by Dark Star Collective Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz Online


From consciousness-raising groups to hair-razing punk rockers, a fascinating window into the development of the women's movement, in the words of the women who moved it. Spanning the century, these classic essays contextualize feminism as a larger politics of liberation and equality. Whether it's Emma Goldman's attack on suffrage, the infamous Second Wave debates, or armedFrom consciousness-raising groups to hair-razing punk rockers, a fascinating window into the development of the women's movement, in the words of the women who moved it. Spanning the century, these classic essays contextualize feminism as a larger politics of liberation and equality. Whether it's Emma Goldman's attack on suffrage, the infamous Second Wave debates, or armed struggle group Rote Zora's call for direct action, critical analysis and biting polemic connect the dots to show not just how anarchism influenced feminism, but how feminism changed—and continues to change—the political landscape around it. Includes key essays "The Tyranny of Structurelessness" and "The Tyranny of Tyranny" which broke open the feminist debate on organizing in the 1970s....

Title : Quiet Rumours: An Anarcha-Feminist Reader
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781902593401
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 120 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Quiet Rumours: An Anarcha-Feminist Reader Reviews

  • Zanna
    2019-01-11 14:25

    “I am nothing when I am by myself… I only know that I exist because I am needed by someone who is real, my husband, and my children" – Meredith Tax"In traditional anarchist dialogue the site for revolution has been the workplace; from a feminist perspective the family and the body are additional sites of conflict. This is our literal “means of production” which we should be determined to seize" – Revolutionary Anarcha-Feminist Group DublinThis book quite loosely collects a number of essays on anarcha-feminism and related topics, some very old (pre 20th century), most seemingly "second wave" era, and a few newly written.The essays here tended to blur together for me despite the fact that they took rather diverse positions, so while I was generally feeling along with the arguments, it was sometimes slightly startling to arrive at something that seemed to contradict a previous statement (in someone else’s essay!) More could have been done by the editors, I felt, to provide context at least by ordering the work chronologically and dating it, since the overall effect is somewhat scattershot although often very inspiring and heartening."Oppressions, no matter how pervasive, how predictable, almost always are donw to us by someone – even if that person is acting as an agent of the state, or as a member of the dominant race, gender or class" – Carol Ehrlich"To separate the process from the goals of revolution is to ensure the perpetuation of oppressive structure and style" – Peggy KorneggerThe most precious takeaway from the book for me was a feeling that I must shake off my sense of helplessness and crippling disgust with the political system as it stands, and look harder for places to start. Wendy Doniger asks us to imagine history; here in the slogan “all power to the imagination”, we are inspired to imagine a better present and ways to bring it into being that we can actually do, however small and slight.

  • J. Rogue
    2018-12-31 19:47

    I'll definitely be re-reading this when the new version comes out September 11th! The esteemed Abbey Volcano and I have an article in it. :)

  • Viola
    2018-12-17 20:29

    Great to see it republished and updated. I lived in London in 1980s when it was first distributed and we had it on a stall when we toured and showed the excellent documentary "All Our Lives" as a video.It is about Mujeres Libres/Free Women of Spain. The film had historical footage from 1930s and interviews with the older women since. Note many were exiled from Spain by Franco's Fascists and chose to live in Toulouse in France not far from ability to return clandestinely and after Franco's death in 1977 openly.."A window into the development of the women's movement in the words of those who moved it. Compiled and introduced by the UK-based anarchist collective Dark Star, Quiet Rumours features articles and essays from four generations of anarchist-inspired feminists, including Emma Goldman, Voltairine de Cleyre, Jo Freeman, Peggy Kornegger, Cathy Levine, Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, Mujeres Creando, Rote Zora, and beyond. All the pieces from the first two editions are included here, as well as new material bringing third and so-called fourth-wave feminism into conversation with twenty-first century politics. An ideal overview for budding feminists and an exciting reconsideration for seasoned radicals."Radio show by two anarcha-feminists on intersection theme here: have wrritten new introduction to AK press republication of Quiet Rumours anarcha-feminist reader

  • Catarina Branco
    2019-01-03 13:35

    That was amazing!

  • Daniel
    2019-01-12 17:49

    Quiet Rumours seems like a work in progress, not a finished product. The essays inside are hit-or-miss. I loved some, and I was unimpressed by others. Some challenged me, others didn't. Spanning a century and a globe, they are not consistent, and they are poorly organized: neither by chronology nor theme.For the most part, the book includes anarchist writings about feminism, and feminist writings about anarchism. But the book failed to demonstrate a synthesis of the two, and instead contented itself on showing a symbiosis. Whereas I was reading the book to learn about the intersection of the two concepts, I came away with what I already brought: that they were paralell, and both necessary for a just society.The essays in the beginning did a lot of insisting that anarchism and feminism were interrelated without explaining why or how. The two-essay debate about structure and tyranny were practical looks at trying to synthesize at least a practice of their intersection if not a theory, but when presented together, they merely contradicted one another. The most inspiring and wonderful articles that came close to this synthesis were written by those, such as the Bolivian Mujeres Creando ("I've said it and I'll say it again that we're not anarchists by Bakunin or the CNT, but rather by our grandmothers, and that's a beautiful school of anarchism"- FUCK YES.) who were not trying to self-consciously define their anarchism as exclusionary or individualist. But several of the articles uncompellingly emphasized, in order for the authors to self-consciously differentiate themselves from other Socialists, the individualist tendency of anarchism.Emma Goldman's "A Woman Without a Country," though a great text, mentioned nothing of feminism, let alone anarchist feminism. It seems it was included because the author was both an anarchist and a feminist.AK Press and Dark Star made matters far worse for this book. First of all, there were typos in the text, one unfortunate and notable one being the word "his" where it should have said "has." Secondly, The book felt more like 400 pages than 116 pages. The type was *way* too small, sans-serif, and divided into two columns per page. This made every page take an eternity to read, and I spent a good while after every time I put the book down trying to find where I was (4 columns and 47 lines to check!). No one could call this book a page-turner. Thirdly, the pages were so large that the binding broke apart while I was reading it, which distracted greatly from the final essays, which I read while gingerly holding the book so that the wind wouldn't carry them away.Don't get me wrong, the topic is very worthy, and many of the articles within the book are really quite amazing. But I look forward to a more thoughtful collection of anarcha-feminist works in the future.

  • Ariel
    2018-12-17 17:39

    It's been a few years since I've read theory that's supplemented and pushed what I'm doing in my real life. I read Quiet Rumours over the past weekend while simultaneously participating in Port Militarization Resistance and supporting those doing direct action against the war. Before the last couple of months, I thought of anarchists as punky white guys into a dumpster diving with a poor analysis of the intersections of oppression. Now I'm comfortable calling myself an anarchist to complement my commitment to radical politics and ending oppressive hierarchies.This is an anthology of essays, articles, and pamphlets that bring together anarchism and feminism from Emma Goldman to the contemporary Mujeres Creando of Bolivia. "Anarchism: The Feminist Connection" by Peggy Kornegger is my favorite essay in this anthologist. If I ever teach a women's studies class, this is going on my syllabus. It's online here: of this book: poor editing made it feel more like a 'zine than a published text. And even though most of the writings are accessible, I still was a bit confused on some of the jargon. This isn't really a primer. Most these essays didn't have any context introducing them: what year were they written? Why were they picked for this anthology? Lastly, some of the essays seemed under-developed in race analysis, but I guess that's something we can help bring to anarcha-feminism now. These flaws kept me from giving this book five stars.Why don't I ever read anarchist theory in the academy? I'm going to start writing this stuff.

  • Elizabeth
    2019-01-15 17:41

    What the blurb on the back doesn't make clear is that this anthology was originally a collection of second wave radfem pamphlets from the 1970's, heavy on white feminist theory. By the third edition, a handful of responses have been thrown in to "update" the volume. That's just not enough to push back against an awful transphobic gender essentialist core of the collection. Nor is a fringe mention of intersectionality enough to make our feminism intersectional. These are the largest problems of the anthology. Additionally, the essays lack organization and are only sporadically contextualized. Quiet Rumors does have some historical value, in preserving some writings of second wave white anarchist feminists and UK anarcha-feminists of an indeterminate time frame (again, inadequately organized and contextualized). There's a few bits by Emma Goldman and Voltairine de Cleyre included, and short snapshots of the specific tactics of some German and Bolivian anarcha-feminist groups. I did learn a few things I didn't know. But it is not a good overview or introduction to anarcha-feminism.

  • Spicy T AKA Mr. Tea
    2018-12-22 16:40

    I remember reading this for the first time in my senior year of college and being utterly blown away. It was my first reading on the subject of anarchism and it was so inspirational. I credit my friend Em for turning me onto it. I remember having discussions about federated communities and industries at Nana's Japanese Cafe in Alfred, NY. Years later, I attended a book group with some friends of mine at the time who critiqued it pretty hard. I still find it has incredible value for what it can offer in terms of examples of anarchism--specifically anarcha-feminism--in action.

  • Benjamin
    2018-12-28 16:34

    This is mainly of historical interest, and in the meantime probably all of the documents collected here are freely available online. The layout is terrible, with tiny print and then lots of white space. The collection itself is very uneven, and leans heavily towards insurrectionist stuff while ignoring cool anarcho-feminists groups like Mujeres Libres or the Syndikalistische Frauenbund. The articles from the 1970s, which ought to be the most interesting since they are from new left feminists discovering anarchism... are all kind of icky like most new left stuff. There is weird infighting, and no one seems all that comfortable with their own homosexuality, let alone any one else's. There is one bang on, totally awesome piece in here, though, at least in my opinion, and that is the one from Alice Nutter who worked on the Class War newspaper in the '80s. I really feel like AK Press didn't do the work here. I already griped about the layout. I think there was some spell-checking or fact-checking stuff too that seems wrong to me. Also, alongside the introduction, it would have been cooler to have little intros before each piece, explaining the context and giving some relevant biographical facts about the authors. I mean, the point isn't to relive these old debates so much as to meet the sheroes of the past, right? So who were they? Yeah, I am disappointed, but I still liked it enough for 3 stars.

  • River
    2018-12-23 12:51

    This book is one of the few published works that deals with anarcha-feminism. As such, it offers an important contribution to the anarchist canon and is to some degree essential reading. It has writings from Emma Goldman and Voltairine de Cleyre (two of the most famous feminist anarchists) as well as a number of pieces from the 1970s and beyond when anarcha-feminism experienced a resurgence. They provide a good introduction to the origins of modern anarcha-feminism as an outgrowth of women's liberation at the end of the 1960s. Most of these pieces still have something to offer, especially for their insights on organizing and the importance of feminism to anarchism. That said, the pieces are a little dated and sometimes lack the necessary context to properly situation them.This book has been revised several times with each of the editions containing all the articles from the previous one plus newer pieces. The most recent 3rd edition has two great essays that look at the relevance of anarcha-feminism to contemporary anarchist practice as well as a critical look at the theory of intersectionality. If you are going to read this book, definitely try to track down the third edition.

  • Shaun
    2019-01-09 16:48

    This book has a lot of great work in it. I was a little thrown off by the lack of context for most of the essays: the forward states that the book seeks to reprint older works and "preserve and pass on significant works to younger/newer comrades", and many of these were first reprinted as single pamphlets by the Dark Star Collective. Unfortunately, only three or four of the included works provided dates of original publication, and no bibliography exists to promote the further reading that the book hopes to spark. Whereas a couple of the essays have nice introductions which shed light on them, many others are presented without notes or any background, leaving (I imagine) many "younger/newer comrades" wondering what the authors are referring to. But it certainly is, as stated inside, more of a sampling than a thorough anthology, and ought to be read and shared widely.Also, illustrations by Miriam Klien Stahl!

  • Rebecca Nesler
    2018-12-24 17:30

    A great book to challenge your world view. I particularly suggest the essays by Rote Zora and Emma Goldman. What is the difference between legal violence and illegal violence? Have women really be emancipated and why has the feminist movement been repeatedly over shadowed? If you think that you're a free woman this book will challenge that and if you already know you're not this book will give you some leverage in debates. On the other hand, some of the essays were utterly dull and unenlightening and some of them were downright mysandronist. (Not sure this is a word but I mean man-hating.)

  • Bart
    2018-12-29 16:23

    I was excited to read this book, as there is little anarcha-feminist writing available in the book world. Unforutanely I found much of Quiet Rumours boring and/or inaccessible. Carol Ehrlich's essay is particulary redeeming in Ehrlich's discussion of the spectacle, which I frequently contemplate. "Rebellious acts, then tend to be acts of opposition to the spectacle, but seldom are so different that they transcend the spectacle" (49). What to do!The pieces on Mujeres Creando in Bolivia and Rote Zora, also were interesting in their applications of anarcha-feminism to action. Are they transcending the spectacle? I don't know.

  • Luke Crawford
    2019-01-09 15:24

    So, I am mostly talking about Jo Freeman's "the tyranny of structurlessness" here, though "the tyranny of tyranny " was also included; It is weak, though; I mean It's no insult to say that Levine was completely outclassed here; it's like sending Hayek up against Keynes; regardless of what you feel about the viewpoints involved, it's just not a fair fight.

  • Shreya
    2019-01-06 17:50

    like masturbation, anarchism is something we have been brought up to fear, irrationally and unquestioningly, because not to fear it might lead us to probe it, learn it and like it. for anyone who has ever considered the possibility that masturbation might provide more benefits than madness, a study of anarchism is highly recommended...(cathy levine)

  • Sarah Jane
    2018-12-19 14:40

    Its really hard to come across anarcha-feminist literature! This book is a great collection of pieces written by anarchist feminists from all different backgrounds and perspectives. Some of the writing I found inaccessible, but most of it offered a lot of great insight.

  • Chris
    2019-01-16 20:36

    The essays (mostly) start with a good, strong thesis, but seem to fall apart in as the argument turns more to 70's radical feminism infighting. More a primary source document on historical anarachism/ feminism.

  • James
    2018-12-23 13:42

    Really good update of a classic book. I especially like, of the newer stuff, the great chapter on intersectionality and the stuff at the end on Latin America. A must-read.

  • Matthew Conroy
    2018-12-22 16:26

    Good, varied essays on anarchism and feminism. I look forward to reading more.

  • James Guillaume
    2018-12-30 14:46

    An absolutely must-read for anyone who makes the distinction between anarchist feminism, and liberal feminism.

  • Tanuja
    2019-01-05 19:30

    Simply an excellent, much-needed book.

  • Jennifer
    2018-12-21 19:34

    A lot of different types of feminism were represented here. I loved the anarchist viewpoint. Very inspiring.

  • Dana
    2018-12-26 20:45

    Trying to quench my total curiosity about anarchism and feminism. Yeah, I know.

  • Kyle Simon
    2018-12-18 16:30

    The essays overall were sort of hit or miss, although the book displays itself as an anarcha-feminist reader it's not particularly intersectional in other ways.

  • Rhianna
    2018-12-18 15:35

    Some of the sections were (understandably) dense and difficult to read through. I particularly liked the sections by Emma Goldman.

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