Friend of the Mojoverse Noah Berlatsky has moved his intellectually stimulating and extremely well-written blog, The Hooded Utilitarian
, under the umbrella of the recently redesigned The Comics Journal
This week, he hosts an online roundtable
discussing Ariel Schrag
, featuring contributions from the author at the end of the week.
"Likewise is Ariel's memoir about her senior year of high school, written one year after she graduated, and focuses a lot on gender identity and on her experience as a lesbian," Noah writes.
Likewise Roundtable | The Hooded Utilitarian
For a memoir about a lesbian coming of age, Likewise is absolutely full to bursting with penises. There are Schrodinger’s penises attached to various possible boys who may or may not be fucking Ariel’s not-nearly-gay-enough ex Sally. There’s a much touted artificial penis which Ariel purchases on her eighteenth birthday. There are daydream penises, which keep intruding, somewhat queasily, into Ariel’s masturbatory fantasies. And there are even some real live honest to goodness actual penises attached to guys with whom Ariel does assorted non-lesbian type things.
In short, to get all alliterative, the penis-to-panel proportion is patently preposterous. Even the most drooling male sybarite fueled by the most unforgiving mid-life crisis (Kingsley Amis, say, or Dan Clowes) couldn’t have conceived that teen lesbians were this obsessed with male genitalia. I mean, really, it’s difficult to imagine that straight women think about it that much.
Which is sort of the point. Ariel thinks about penises the way constipated people think about their bowels....