Kim Gordon to co-edit new book of music essays, ‘This Woman’s Work’

Essays about pioneering female artists and movements written by Maggie Nelson, Ottessa Moshfegh, Margo Jefferson and more

Kim Gordon will co-edit a new book of essays about pioneering female artists, written by female writers.

This Woman’s Work: Essays on Music will be edited by the co-founding Sonic Youth member alongside former music journalist Sinéad Gibson, and is set to arrive in April 2022 via the publishing imprint White Rabbit. The book will feature contributions from Maggie Nelson, Ottessa Moshfegh, Margo Jefferson, Jenn Pelly, Juliana Huxtable and more.

According to its synopsis, the book is “for and about the women who kicked in doors, as pioneers of their craft or making politics central to their sound: those who offer a new way of thinking about the vast spectrum of women in music”.

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“‘What’s it like to be a girl in a band?’ The often-repeated question throughout my career as a musician made me feel disrupted, a freak or that we are all the same. I once asked my boyfriend what it was like to have a penis? To me they are sort of equivalent questions,” Gordon wrote on Instagram when announcing the project.

“If it was born out of pure curiosity it’s understandable. Hopefully this book begins an unravelling of the myth that if you’re a female musician you are a ready-made, easily digestible.”

 

“Music has been a massive part of my life, from fan to music journalist and writer, I’ve always been aware that male narratives have dominated this industry; valorised and prioritised above many ground-breaking female practitioners,” added Gleeson, who released her first book Constellations back in 2019.

“Women (like Kim) had to carve out their own space within it, and we wanted to create a book that asked women to tell us about the female artists, movements and pioneers that matter to them.

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“It’s been honour to find these stories, and to work alongside Kim — who I first saw play in Dublin with Sonic Youth when I was 16. This Woman’s Work has a stellar list of contributors writing across subjects both familiar and niche and we hope there’s something in here for every music fan.”

Gordon released her memoir, Girl in a Band, back in 2015. In a four-and-a-half star review of the book, NME’s Leonie Cooper wrote, “So much more than a rock biog, Girl in a Band is a unique record of the past 50 years of alternative culture.”

Last year, Gordon released No Icon, a “personally curated scrapbook” of writing, photographs, clippings, artworks and more.

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