SpaceChampion Posted June 9, 2017 Share Posted June 9, 2017 This novel sounds hilarious. And it's just won the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction. Quote It starts with teenage girls. At 14 or 15, the age when in our present world girls are waking to an awareness of their own sexuality tangled up in all the ways society will seek to stifle or exploit it, Alderman has them come alive to the thrill of pure power: the ability to hurt or even kill by releasing electrical jolts from their fingertips. “Something’s happening. The blood is pounding in her ears. A prickling feeling is spreading along her back, over her shoulders, along her collarbone. It’s saying: you can do it. It’s saying: you’re strong.” Footage of girls electrocuting men floods the internet; uncontrolled individual outbursts swell into the knowledge of collective power as more girls learn how to harness this strange new ability, and show older women how to awaken it too. Men start to give teenage girls a wide berth on the street; boys are segregated into single-sex schools for their own safety. The phenomenon is blamed on nerve gas, witchcraft, an anti-male conspiracy, a mystery virus; it’s assumed that an antidote will be found and the “normal” balance of power restored. But every individual exercise of power contributes to power relations as a whole, and change is unstoppable. The victims of sex traffickers turn on their assailants. There are revolutions in Riyadh and Delhi. Oppressed women assume that divine intervention has saved them from the hell-on-earth of their previous existence, and a new religious leader is ready and waiting to feminise faith: “Jews: look to Miriam, not Moses ... Muslims: look to Fatimah, not Muhammad. Buddhists: remember Tara, the mother of liberation. Christians: pray to Mary for your salvation.” Armies become female, to harness and exploit girls’ natural aggression; sexual violence flows in the other direction now. Drugs are developed to heighten the power, and porn created to fetishise it. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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