‘Not all Essex girls are party girls. They can be sages, martyrs, leaders. In her neat and provocative little book, Sarah Perry celebrates their courage and vivacity.’ Hilary Mantel
A defence and celebration of the Essex Girl by the best-selling author of The Essex Serpent
Essex Girls are disreputable, disrespectful and disobedient. They speak out of turn, too loudly and too often, in an accent irritating to the ruling classes. Their bodies are hyper-sexualised and irredeemably vulgar. They are given to intricate and voluble squabbling. They do not apologise for any of this. And why should they?
In this exhilarating feminist defence of the Essex girl, Sarah Perry re-examines her relationship with her much maligned home county. She summons its most unquiet spirits, from Protestant martyr Rose Allin to the indomitable Abolitionist Anne Knight, sitting them alongside Audre Lorde, Kim Kardashian and Harriet Martineau, and showing us that the Essex girl is not bound by geography. She is a type, representing a very particular kind of female agency, and a very particular kind of disdain: she contains a multitude of women, and it is time to celebrate them.
Not all Essex girls are party girls. They can be sages, martyrs, leaders. In her neat and provocative little book, Sarah Perry celebrates their courage and vivacity. -- Hilary Mantel In each account, as in her fiction, Perry displays her gift for peeling back the layers of our present day to exhume forgotten lives. The arguments are clear, the prose is stiletto sharp... The Essex Girl daringly holds up a mirror to the rest of Britain. * Daily Telegraph * Praise for Sarah Perry: 'A hugely talented author' -- Sarah Waters A polemic that makes room for both Kim Kardashian and Harriet Martineau * Guardian Biggest Books of Autumn 2020 * The always-enthralling Perry returns with a spiky and subversive look at the power of all things Essex - and a feminist defence of "Essex girls". * the i Paper * Perry is a wonderful descriptive writer with a remarkable talent for making the familiar strange ... She bleeds light into darkness and back again * The Times *
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