The delineation between paranoid and reparative readings originated in 1995, with influential critic Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick. A paranoid reading focuses on what’s wrong or problematic about a work of art. A reparative reading seeks out what might be nourishing or healing in a work of art, even if the work is flawed. Importantly, a reparative reading also tends to consider what might be nourishing or healing in a work of art for someone who isn’t the reader.
This is almost an aside in a much longer article about Isabel Fall’s short story, “I Sexually Identify as an Attack Helicopter,” which is worth reading in full (though content warning for gender dysphoria, transphobia, harassment, and mentions of suicide and mental illness).
After ditching Twitter (and most social media) a few years back, one of my self-imposed rules has been to limit my exposure with people who are known, primarily or in large part, for their Pithy Internet Hot Takes. This mostly means just . . . not being on Twitter, though I also do liberal name muting on platforms like Tumblr and Mastodon. It is an unbelievably freeing feeling.