Valerie Solanas is understandably not celebrated for her attempt to kill Warhol. She was, in fact, a friend and peer of his who had significantly contributed to feminist discourse through her “Society for Cutting Up Men” manifesto, where both violence and intelligence are justified. What I love about The SCUM Manifesto is the Freudian inversion – where womb envy displaces penis envy as the societal cause of undesired phenotypes. Whether parody or not, this is a piece of art in its bold focus on the control mechanisms imposed on the female body extending through the discourse of psychoanalysis so that inferiority is built as innate mental architecture. Such is the insidious tenure of the discourse.
The poem attempts to contextualise the act as performative and embodying social activism.
I have to thank the book ‘The Lonely City’ as inspiration, written by the talented Olivia Laing.