In 2003 the first Swedish translation of the well-known second-wave feminist manifesto, the SCUM Manifesto by Valerie Solanas, was published. Publication of this text became intricately involved with a number of other contemporary events in Sweden which pose questions about that country’s widely perceived status as one of the most “gender equal” in the world. In this paper, I use the text’s own challenging content, provocative language and complicated history as a way into exploring its disruptive effects on Swedish society. I ask how and why the text retains its power to provoke and challenge some forty years after its initial publication, and its place in the so-called “feminist canon.”

Author Biography

Katherine Harrison is a PhD student at Birkbeck, University of London, U.K. and is researching intersections of gender, language and technology under the supervision of Lynne Segal and Laura Salisbury. Financial support for writing this paper was provided by a studentship from Birkbeck, University of London, UK, and by the European Community under a Marie Curie Host Fellowship for Early Stage Researchers Training, hosted by the Department of Gender Studies, Linköping University, Sweden, under the supervision of Nina Lykke.