[LMB] new Bujold podcast interview up at Smart Bitches

Beatrice Otter beatrice_otter at zoho.com
Sat Jun 12 06:59:16 BST 2021

---- On Fri, 11 Jun 2021 22:31:07 -0700 Markus Baur via Lois-Bujold <mailto:lois-bujold at lists.herald.co.uk> wrote ---- 
might that gender attribution be an english language thing? at least in 
the german language "Schundliteratur" (trash literature) hits things 
suppoasedly mostly read by males (like SF and comic books) just as well .. 

Beatrice Otter:

In English, a wide variety of genres and subgenres get labelled as low-brow or otherwise sneered at. But "trashy" is almost exclusively referring to romance novels. Indeed, "trashy romance novels" is a widely-used phrase to describe, well, romance novels. Regardless of the actual quality of the work, many times. People who talk about "trashy romance novels" will say they don't mean all romance novels, just the bad ones, but then assume all romance novels are bad until proven otherwise. "Chick lit" i.e. non-romance novels also written by and for women also get described as "trashy," sometimes. Women are often expected to apologize for reading those genres and make disclaimers about how they read "better" books, too.

By labeling their website as "Smart Bitches, Trashy Books" and "Smart Podcast, Trashy Books" the women running that site are putting up a giant middle finger at the inherent sexism in labeling the whole genres as "trash."

Beatrice Otter

More information about the Lois-Bujold mailing list