Mercy

Overview

If Andrea Dworkin is the Malcolm X of feminism, then this novel is her version of his autobiography. . . . She is brilliant, her anger is a polished and dangerous instrument, and even some of the people she's marked as enemies can hope she finds her way. –– Madison Smartt Bell, Chicago Tribune

A controversial novel by the author of Pornography, Intercourse and Ice & Fire. Mercy is an intelligent and couargeous woman who, as a nine-year-old girl, was molested by ...

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Overview

If Andrea Dworkin is the Malcolm X of feminism, then this novel is her version of his autobiography. . . . She is brilliant, her anger is a polished and dangerous instrument, and even some of the people she's marked as enemies can hope she finds her way. –– Madison Smartt Bell, Chicago Tribune

A controversial novel by the author of Pornography, Intercourse and Ice & Fire. Mercy is an intelligent and couargeous woman who, as a nine-year-old girl, was molested by a man in a dark theatre. The repercussions of this act follow her through her life. Gloria Steinem says of Dworkin: "In every century, there are a handful of writers who help the human race evolve. Andrea is one of them."

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In her nonfiction books ( Letters from a War Zone ) and her first novel ( Ice and Fire ) Dworkin established a reputation as a provocative writer of feminist literature. She gives her own name to the protagonist/narrator of this powerful, almost frenzied, admittedly autobiographical novel that chronicles her life and sexual victimization. ``Andrea'' gets her first taste of sex at age nine when she is molested in a movie theater. A rebellious teenager, she hangs out in Greenwich Village, idolizes Allen Ginsberg and is swept up into the peace movement. Penniless, streetwise but not street-smart, Andrea is continually and brutally raped by lovers, acquaintances, strangers. The novel's unparagraphed prose--like Andrea, intense, jumpy, impassioned--brilliantly captures the narrator's mental and physical degradation. As her life disintegrates, she repeats three facts--her name, her place of birth and the poet Walt Whitman's address in Camden, N.J., on a street where she was born--as a mantra anchoring her to reality. The most sexually graphic and horrifying scenes involve her marriage to a European revolutionary who abuses and burns her as she desperately tries to be a good bourgeois housewife. It is no wonder that the novel's ending finds Andrea committed to the women's movement. While Andrea's high-pitched voice is at first hard to take, its vehemence and candor build to a convincing indictment of a society that tolerates violence against women. 25,000 first printing; author tour. (Sept.)
Library Journal
In this work, the well-known author of numerous books on women, feminism, and pornography has created an unusual, highly charged, and formally provocative account of one woman's life of increasingly horrific violence and sexual abuse by men. The book begins when the protagonist, Andrea, is nine years old and has just been the victim of a sexual assault by a stranger in a movie theater. From that point on, the reader is carried at a dizzying pace through chapters in Andrea's progressively darker and more disturbing life until Andrea, at 27, comes to the decision that the only response to the kind of violence she's suffered all her life at the hands of men is simply to start killing them. Unfortunately, the compelling, stream-of-consciousness pacing of the narrative begins to break down early in the book, becoming a harsh diatribe that, ultimately, Dworkin's skill as a writer is not sufficient to carry.-- Jessica Grim, Oberlin Coll. Lib., Ohio
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780941423694
  • Publisher: Avalon Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 1/1/1993
  • Edition description: A Four Walls Eight Windows 1st ed
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 352
  • Product dimensions: 5.85 (w) x 8.56 (h) x 1.29 (d)

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