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Feminist Reading Group: Feminist Futures
Location: 19 University Place, 2nd Floor, The Jordan Center

FRG was founded in the fall of 2015 by a group of students in the Comparative Literature department at NYU looking to enrich their scholarly work and their personal lives with readings in feminist theory. Last semester, under the theme “Feminist Killjoys,” we read work by Sara Ahmed, Wendy Brown, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Clare Hemmings, Jennifer C. Nash, Bobby Noble, Dean Spade, Robyn Wiegman, and others exploring feminism’s often troubled relationship to academic institutionalization. Previous semesters’ themes include "Feminist Porn Wars” and “Socialist Feminisms."

Our theme this semester is “Feminist Futures.” We are living, now but also as before, in a present bloating with political dread. So rather than wriggle our way through it, we're changing the channel and giving ourselves permission to speculate on the future—from wild, spectacular utopian demands to those bits of otherwiseness we’ve all been hiding from our parents under the floorboards of the present. This semester’s readings may range from feminist speculative literature (both fiction and criticism) to cyber- and techno-feminist manifestos to queer and feminist theories of futurity, fugivity, and escape; authors may include Aimee Bahng, Marleen S. Barr, Octavia E. Butler, Tina Campt, André M. Carrington, Michelle Commander, Shulamith Firestone, Donna Haraway, Laboria Cuboniks, Ursula K. Le Guin, Elizabeth Povinelli, August Villiers de l’Isle-Adam, Alyssa Wong, and others, as well as selections from Ann and Jeff VanderMeer’s collection Sisters of the Revolution: A Feminist Speculative Fiction Anthology and the New Inquiry’s “Speculating Futures” reading list. Importantly, readings will be determined as we proceed through the semester, so attendees will have ample space for input!

The readings for the first meeting, already available on our website, are Ursula K. Le Guin’s 1990 short story “The Shobies’ Story” and Octavia Butler’s 2005 short story “The Book of Martha." Both works will give us space for thinking about speculation, fantasy, fiction, and what it means to think the future. We’ve also put up some nonfiction essays of Le Guin’s on utopia for further reading.

For this semester’s readings and syllabi from past semesters, visit our website: For more information or to join our mailing list, contact Andrea Chu at

Co-sponsored by NYU GSAS and NYU Comp Lit.
All graduate students, faculty, and friends welcome.
Refreshments at every meeting!

Meets every other Monday:
Jan. 30
Feb. 13
Feb. 27
Mar. 20
Apr. 3
Apr. 17
May 1