Dead Girls: Essays on Surviving an American Obsession

Dead Girls: Essays on Surviving an American Obsession

by Alice Bolin

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Overview

A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF 2018

An Edgar Award nominee for best critical / biographical

Best of 2018 according to Kirkus, The Boston Globe, The New York Times, The Portland Mercury, Bustle, Thrillist, and Electric Lit

A New York Times Editor's Choice, a best of summer 2018 according to Bitch Magazine, Harpers Bazaar, The Millions, Esquire, Refinery29, Nylon, PopSugar, The Chicago Tribune, Book Riot, and CrimeReads

In this poignant collection, Alice Bolin examines iconic American works from the essays of Joan Didion and James Baldwin to Twin Peaks, Britney Spears, and Serial, illuminating the widespread obsession with women who are abused, killed, and disenfranchised, and whose bodies (dead and alive) are used as props to bolster men’s stories. Smart and accessible, thoughtful and heartfelt, Bolin investigates the implications of our cultural fixations, and her own role as a consumer and creator.

Bolin chronicles her life in Los Angeles, dissects the Noir, revisits her own coming of age, and analyzes stories of witches and werewolves, both appreciating and challenging the narratives we construct and absorb every day. Dead Girls begins by exploring the trope of dead women in fiction, and ends by interrogating the more complex dilemma of living women – both the persistent injustices they suffer and the oppression that white women help perpetrate.

Reminiscent of the piercing insight of Rebecca Solnit and the critical skill of Hilton Als, Bolin constructs a sharp, perceptive, and revelatory dialogue on the portrayal of women in media and their roles in our culture. 

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062657145
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 06/26/2018
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 288
Sales rank: 235,837
Product dimensions: 5.31(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.65(d)

About the Author

Alice Bolin's nonfiction has appeared in many publications including ELLE, the Awl, the LA Review of Books, Salon, VICE's Broadly, The Paris Review Daily, and The New Yorker's Page-Turner blog. She currently teaches creative nonfiction at the University of Memphis.

alicebolin.com

Twitter: @alicebolin

Table of Contents

Introduction: Girls, Girls, Girls 1

Part 1 The Dead Girl Show

Toward a Theory of a Dead Girl Show 13

Black Hole 25

The Husband Did It 47

The Daughter as Detective 57

Part 2 Lost in Los Angeles

There There 89

Los Angeles Diary 99

Lonely Heart 109

The Place Makes Everyone a Gambler 117

The Dream 137

Part 3 Weird Sisters

A Teen Witch's Guide to Staying Alive 159

And So It Is 177

My Hypochondria 187

Just Us Girls 199

Part 4 A Sentimental Education

Accomplices 215

Acknowledgments 275

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