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Daring to Be Bad

Radical Feminism in America 1967-1975

1989
Author:

Alice Echols
Foreword by Ellen Willis

Daring to Be Bad

Combines intellectual and social history with collective biography to present the first historical study of the radical feminist movement in America.

Combines intellectual and social history with collective biography to present the first historical study of the radical feminist movement in America.

. . . this balanced study deftly explores feminism, from its break with the coalition of leftist activist groups of the '60s to its abandonment of radicalism and separatism in the '70s. . . . Echols masterfully re-creates a perpetually divisive atmosphere . . .

Publishers Weekly

". . . this balanced study deftly explores feminism, from its break with the coalition of leftist activist groups of the '60s to its abandonment of radicalism and separatism in the '70s. . . . Echols masterfully re-creates a perpetually divisive atmosphere . . . " Publishers Weekly

“A fine introduction to the bold, contentious, complicated women who categorically refused to be good little girls, and thereby changed the way our culture defines male-female relations.”VLS

“Daring to Be Bad offers the kind of critical attention that contemporary feminism has lacked.” The Nation

“Far beyond mere nostalgic value, the enduring worth of Echols’ book is as a resource, not only for the future women’s studies courses, but for all who want to understand contemporary feminism. The book supplies essential background that explains the splits which persist in the feminist movement today. . . . cheers to Daring to Be Bad.” New Directions for Women

“. . . Daring to Be Bad is a welcome addition to feminist bookshelves. [It] breaks new ground, making creative use of extensive interviews and early feminist publications to recreate the environment that elicited and shaped radical feminism.” Sojourner

“Daring to Be Bad is like a long consciousness-raising session: It prods, validates, and witnesses. Echols offers an oral history that is also an homage. . . . we’re given the benefit of a clear and honest eye cast over two decades’ span of women working on that most influential social struggle toward liberation.” Village Voice

Awards

Gustavus Myers Center for the Study of Human Rights’s Outstanding Book Award winner

Daring to Be Bad

Alice Echols is a visiting assistant professor at the University of Arizona Tucson. She received her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Michigan in U.S. history, specializing in women’s history and social history. Echols has received several rewards and grants, including the University of Michigan’s Horace H. Rackham Distinguished Dissertation Award in 1987. Her articles have appeared in the books Pleasure and Danger: Exploring Female Sexuality (edited by Carole Vance, 1984) and Powers of Desire: The Politics of Sexuality (edited by Ann Snitow, Christine Stansell, and Sharon Thompson, 1983), and in The Women’s Review of Books and Social Text.

Daring to Be Bad

. . . this balanced study deftly explores feminism, from its break with the coalition of leftist activist groups of the '60s to its abandonment of radicalism and separatism in the '70s. . . . Echols masterfully re-creates a perpetually divisive atmosphere . . .

Publishers Weekly

If we are still debating the relative importance of gender, class, and race, combating the power of capitalism and patriarchy, this valuable study shows that the discussion owes much to the radical feminists who hewed out the outlines of these issues.

Library Journal

A fine introduction to the bold, contentious, complicated women who categorically refused to be good little girls, and thereby changed the way our culture defines male-female relations.

Voice Literary Supplement

Daring to Be Bad offers the kind of critical attention that contemporary feminism has lacked.

The Nation

Far beyond mere nostalgic value, the enduring worth of Echols’ book is as a resource, not only for the future women’s studies courses, but for all who want to understand contemporary feminism. The book supplies essential background that explains the splits which persist in the feminist movement today. . . . cheers to Daring to Be Bad.

New Directions for Women

. . . Daring to Be Bad is a welcome addition to feminist bookshelves. [It] breaks new ground, making creative use of extensive interviews and early feminist publications to recreate the environment that elicited and shaped radical feminism.

Sojourner

Daring to Be Bad is like a long consciousness-raising session: It prods, validates, and witnesses. Echols offers an oral history that is also an homage. . . . we’re given the benefit of a clear and honest eye cast over two decades’ span of women working on that most influential social struggle toward liberation.

Village Voice

Daring to Be Bad is a valuable book . . . that grapples with the diversity inherent within the women’s movement while maintaining a critical stance throughout.

American Journal of Sociology

. . . this fine and sympathetic interpretation of the origin and evolution of radical feminism will give students of women’s history a glimpse of the passion of those hours and help explain why a new order did not emerge from them.

American Historical Review

As the first major scholarly work on the history of the U.S. feminist movement . . . [Daring to Be Bad] makes an important contribution to the history of the politics of contemporary American feminism, providing a richly detailed history of that wing of the women’s movement . . . .

The Annals of the American Academy

Echols gives a rich, detailed history of radical feminism’s heyday from 1967 to 1971 . . . offers the type of critical interpretation of the women’s liberation movement that contemporary feminism has lacked.

Socialist Review

[Daring to Be Bad] is path-breaking…based on abundant and painstaking interviewing, as well as the tracking down and assembling of the ephemera of short-lived committees, cells, and association.…[Echols’s] writing is lucid, detailed, and extremely responsible.

American Quarterly