Glitch Feminism: A Manifesto
A new manifesto for cyberfeminism: finding liberation in the glitch between body, gender, and technology
The divide between the digital and the real world no longer exists. We are connected all the time. How do we find out who we are in this digital era? Where do we create the space to explore our identity? How can we come together in solidarity?
A glitch is normally thought of as an error, a faulty overlaying, but, as Legacy Russell shows, liberation can be found within the fissures between gender, technology, and the body. The glitch offers an opportunity for us to perform and transform ourselves in an infinite variety of identities. In Glitch Feminism, Russell makes a series of radical demands through memoir, art, and critical theory, as well as the work of contemporary artists--including Juliana Huxtable, Sondra Perry, boychild, Victoria Sin, and Kia LaBeija--who have travelled through the glitch in their work.
Timely and provocative, Glitch Feminism shows how error can lead to revolution.
"'A glitch is an error, a mistake and a failure to function, ' and with this warning, Legacy Russell takes us on a lightening tour through the terminologies and theories of AFK, IRL, Glitch Ghosts, Digital Dualism, Binary Bodies, and other markers in the current lingo of on-line criticism. She translates the Internet world as she lives it right now. Russell is an important writer to follow as she points out shifting viewpoints of Internet politics in real time."
--RoseLee Goldberg, Director of Performa
"A timely rethinking of cyberfeminism from an intersectional perspective--a deeply personal investigation of blackness and queerness in and through technology. This erudite, vividly-rendered text weaves astute discussions of contemporary artistic practices with personal narrative, capital-T Theory, and virtuosic riffs on twenty-first-century slanguage."
--Mark Tribe, founder of Rhizome
"Glitch Feminism offers technological failure, machinic anxiety, and seams in the interface as the very platforms from which we may begin to rework singular identities into inventive networks, proposing a reboot of feminist discourse. While channeling the boldness of the manifesto form, Legacy Russell offers a nuanced look at inspiring artists whose works reprogram systems of race, gender, and sexuality in the virtual places between living bodies and data bodies. Here, the paradox is the opportunity: the glitch shows you how things work, just as they don't."
"Russell's book is as expansive and plural as the identities it explores, considering art, aesthetic theory, queerness, Blackness and anti-Blackness and, necessarily, the modalities and futures of activist practice."
"Combining art, tech, feminism, Blackness, queerness and critical theory, Russell offers an alternative to error and encourages us to embrace the glitch."
--Karla Strand, Ms. Magazine
"Luminous ... [Glitch Feminism is] a gorgeous document of a number of mostly Black trans, queer, and gender-nonconforming artists working today, from E. Jane and Juliana Huxtable to Shawné Michaelain Holloway, and American Artist."
--Rahel Aima, Bookforum
Verso Books (2020), 9781786632661