My recent non-fiction jaunts have taken in a fair few feminist books, I wanted to review these books, but I don’t feel I have enough to say- or in some cases remember enough- to write full reviews, so I am going for some little reviews instead.
Men Explain Things to Me- Rebecca Solnit
Solnit is the inspiration behind the term ‘Mansplaining’ (although not actually a fan of the term herself). In this book she talks about men thinking they know better than women about things, and some of the serious consequences which can come from these presumptions. I didn’t expect it to be this serious, so in terms of subject it was a good read. However I didn’t really find it a good read…which may not have been helped by me getting annoyed at Solnit suggesting that violence is male. She sort of went back on herself but not before I’d posted a thread about it on twitter
Other people have loved it though. Try Heather’s review
Buy it from £8.88
A History of Britain in 21 Women- Jenni Murray
This one was read as part if our feminist bookgroup (we’re reading ‘The Cows’ this month if you fancy joining us). I was expecting a history of Britain which was female based, maybe women who contributed to big historical events, or were the foundation of them. What we got was more of a series of biographies of women who Murray saw as feminist icons.
I will use Ali’s word and say that I had some quibbles. It was interesting in a historical sense, and included some women who were unknown to me, but I was unsure that I would call some women feminist icons. The major one (and I think the one that our bookgroup had the most quibbles about) was Thatcher. Whilst she broke a major barrier for women she didn’t exactly show support for women.
Dear Ijeawele: Or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions- Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
This book is a copy of a letter that Adichie wrote to her friend with recommendations on how to raise a feminist daughter. It has some really good ideas, and I think it’s well worth a read, especially for parents.