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Drag King Dreams by Leslie Feinberg

Drag King Dreams

by Leslie Feinberg

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Complete trash. This book has some of the worst prose I've seen outside of the freshman composition class I taught at NAU. Also consider that the characters are so poorly developed that they can't even be stereotypes due to inconsistency. To make matters worse, Feinberg focuses on technology as one of hir turning points in the story, but ze clearly has no idea what she's talking about.

Technology is neither an enemy nor a friend to queer liberation in Drag King Dreams. The avatars in the computer game stare at Max’s somewhat queered avatar with the same confusion and lack of respect/sensitivity that humans with bodies have. Max derives little to no gain from hormones and is uninterested in them at the end of the novel.

I was waiting throughout the novel for Max to realize the freedom of not having to deal directly with the people ze met online – that ze could be more free with hir words and revelations about hirself to others than ze could be in person. It’s how I’ve become close with some people that I know well in person – we chat online where we have time to shape our thoughts into careful sentences and where we can refrain from accidentally revealing expressions, body language, and audible tone. Things may be said without fear of immediate, tangible, embarrassing consequences. When Max came to no such conclusions and did not seem to even experience those results of online socialization, I was at first disappointed that perhaps Max was not capable of thinking through the idea, or that Feinberg simply did not understand the change in social dynamic either. However, Max is so straightforward and willing to express in person that there might be little to be gained from anonymity – the masking of internet self-presentation might have been somewhat irrelevant to Max.
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  valzi | Sep 7, 2016 |
The most recent novel by the author of 'Stone Butch Blues' is a nuanced exploration of (trans)identities in a complex cultural, political and technological landscape. Feinberg challenges the reader to conceptualize the characters in the novel without revealing "all" much the way our own, multi-faceted, real identities and lives play out on a daily basis. Excellent work to further queer the representations of the queer self/body/life. ( )
  montesireland | Mar 17, 2010 |
Blah, blah and more blah. If you were expecting anything like Stone Butch Blues, lose those expectations. I found the characters disappointing, the novel undeveloped and rushed. ( )
  GreenVelvet | Jan 26, 2008 |
An interesting read, though would've done well being longer, as you don't really get to know most of the characters. I've spent a lot of time thinking about this book and I admire what Feinberg was trying to do, but honestly feel that it was trying to do too much all at once. ( )
  dancingwaves | Jul 4, 2006 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0786717637, Paperback)

From award-winning and best-selling author, Leslie Feinberg, comes Drag King Dreams, the story of Max Rabinowitz, a butch lesbian bartender at an East Village club where drag kings, dykes dressed as men, perform.

A veteran of the women's and gay movement of the past 30 years, Max's mid-life crisis hits in the midst of the post-9/11 world. Max is lonely and uncertain about her future — fearful, in fact, of America's future with its War on Terror and War in Iraq — with only a core group of friends to turn to for reassurance. Max is shaken from her crisis, however, by the news that her friend Vickie, a transvestite, has been found murdered on her way home late one night. As the community of cross-dressers, drag queens, lesbian and gay men, and "genderqueers" of all kinds stand up together in the face of this tragedy, Max taps into the activist spirit she thought had long disappeared and for the first time in years discovers hope for her future.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:34 -0400)

"Drag King Dreams takes us on a gender journey. Max Rabinowitz, a bouncer in an East Village drag club, has become a loner, sleepwalking through post-9/11 Manhattan. But as life closes in, a circle of co-workers and friends help awaken Max's old activist spirit."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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