America's favorite lesbian writes a propaganda-transcending apologia pro sua vita (though apology is hardly the word)...

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LESBIAN NATION: The Feminist Solution

America's favorite lesbian writes a propaganda-transcending apologia pro sua vita (though apology is hardly the word) partially culled from her weekly columns in The Village Voice -- a tough, charming, marvelous hodgepodge of autobiography, ideology, art world gossip, feminist in-fighting, and sexual boasting of someone who has put her body where her mouth is as a member of society's most oppressed minority -- oppressed for being a woman, oppressed for not being the right kind of (subservient, man-identified) woman. Johnston makes a good case for lesbianism as the revolutionary core of the feminist movement from which they were until recently excluded, showing that the re-formist feminist -- essentially interested in wrenching ""a better deal from her old man"" -- is adjusting to oppression rather than overthrowing it. Her demonstration of the logical necessity of linking bed habits with ideology is also perhaps the best justification of confessional literature going -- ""coming out of the closet"" being not just ego-serving (though, rather joyously and amusingly, that too) but absolutely necessary for the homosexual mythmaking of a prideful sexual identity -- something that tends to be forgotten in the now-fashionable post-Gay Lib era which in fact has only been around since 1969. Her post-Gertrude Steinian immense sentences and absolutely endless paragraphs are somehow necessary to approximate her most accessible thought processes: flowing, associative, contradictory, full of self-mockery at her vanities in the chic art and media worlds, the self-respectful laughter of someone who has paid her dues -- with little help from the world -- and survived.

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 1972

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1972