Marie Calloway – what purpose did i serve in your life

Marie Calloway’s premiere publication, what purpose did i serve in your life, has arrived, but in bad timing, as most online audiences have tired and moved on from her sexually manipulative theatrics that earned her those few seconds of blog-worthiness.  While it is common knowledge at this point that Calloway’s self-sexploitation escapades function more properly as bad performance art than as alt-lit, she has inevitably insisted on her identity as a “writer” and has, thus far, successfully utilized bogus excuses for feminism to create for herself an immunity from criticism.  This aforementioned misuse of feminist politics in turn leads me to mention her greatest success: being one of the few known misandrists that is more offensive to women than to men.  Her book, coincidentally released around the same time as the new novel by her “mentor” Tao Lin and unfortunately unlike her offensiveness, is a failure.

This ill-conceived, sub-literary art project is littered with plainspeak retellings of promiscuity, which in Calloway’s context has less to do about feminism, gender, or sexual psychology and more to do about American narcissism, irrational aimlessness, and seemingly unmotivated exhibitionism.  Calloway makes herself into a histrionic female character cliche–one which even Plath would scoff at–as Calloway constantly pokes and prods around her environments to see how much of it produces something edifying to her.  In the process, she accidentally stumbles onto some potentially valuable material but inadvertently obscures the subjects with more close-ups of herself.

As mentioned previously, her defensive personality has come to some use against critical skeptics, especially in this book, which features her works’ own published criticisms.  Here she has turned a mirror on her critics, and–in her mind–she has subsequently deflected their judgements.  By featuring these harsh critiques, she can properly victimize herself and also paint a false portrait of the critic as one of the few prudes who doesn’t get it.  But we do get it, Marie, and it’s old news.

I’m not offended by pictures of cum spilling out of her mouth or of bruises on her fat, savaged tits; I’m offended that she’s trying to sell her little illustrated book as something more than it is.

-April Davis


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