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Eden Built by Eves: The Culture of Women's Music Festivals

Bonnie J. Morris

37 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1555834779 / ISBN 13: 9781555834777
Published by Alyson Books, 2000
Condition: Good Soft cover
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Bibliographic Details

Title: Eden Built by Eves: The Culture of Women's ...

Publisher: Alyson Books

Publication Date: 2000

Binding: Paperback

Book Condition: Good

Edition: 0.

About this title

Synopsis:

Women's music festivals have played an integral part in the formation of lesbian culture, the shaping of millions of women's lives, and the emergence of women as a musical force to be reckoned with. Now Dr. Bonnie J. Morris takes readers on a journey through 25 years of this cultural phenomenon. From Michigan to Mississippi, Eden Built by Eves is a full archive of festival herstory: conflicts, scandals, new music, rain, sun, work, family, joy. What does festival culture mean to the audiences, artists, and activists who loyally return each year? A tribute to the work of thousands of women, this volume brims with candid backstage interviews with festival performers and producers, moving testimony, and often hilarious anecdotes from "festiegoers," A plethora of photographs, articles, comic strips, illustrations, and excerpts from festival literature provide a thorough explanation of the music, relationships, and issues that have shaped an entire generation of lesbian memories in America.

Review:

Longtime festival enthusiast Bonnie J. Morris offers a thorough, if somewhat breathless, survey of the 25-year history of women's music festivals, drawing on interviews with performers, producers, and technicians, as well as her own extensive archives and journals. "What binds us together [at festivals] is twofold," she affirms, "the collective experience of the music and the collective safety of being in woman-loving space." Many of the women quoted applaud the summer festivals as refuges from misogyny and homophobia, "fantasy islands" that can sustain them for the rest of the year. The restrictions most lesbians face in ordinary life are brought home by the editor's decision not to publish any photographs of happy crowd scenes, in case a woman pictured should lose her job or her children. As well as backstage politics and artistic trends, Morris describes the early performances of successful crossover artists such as Melissa Etheridge, who was once threatened with a boycott by anti-S/M festivalgoers who misheard her line "Meet me in the woods" as "Beat me in the woods." Possibly worth reading just for chapter titles like "There's a Nursing Baby in the Mosh Pit." --Regina Marler

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