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Thread: Good feminist books?

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    Elite Member Honey's Avatar
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    Default Good feminist books?

    Can anyone recommend me some please?

    I'm thinking of getting "He's a stud, she's a slut"

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    Super Moderator NoDayButToday's Avatar
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    I loved the Handmaid's Tale, read that in one of my women's studies classes, great dystopian novel.

    A lot of people I had classes with read and liked Female Chauvinist Pigs. It's supposed to be about women and the rise of what they call "raunch culture", been meaning to read it for a long time now.

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    Elite Member Sassiness's Avatar
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    Totally agree - Female Chauvinist Pigs: Women and the Rise of Raunch Culture by Ariel Levy. A must read for every modern woman!!

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    Elite Member Daphne's Avatar
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    Kate Chopin's The Awakening.

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    The Yellow Wallpaper;

    Jane Eyre
    , to a point.
    I don't want to perish like a fading horse - best lyric ever

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    Mrs Beeton's Book Of Household Management
    I've never liked lesbianism - it leaves a bad taste in my mouth
    Dame Edna Everage

    Just because you're offended doesn't mean you're right.

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    Elite Member Shinola's Avatar
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    It sounds like you might be looking for something more fun than some of the stuff I'm going to list here. I'm a hardcore book nerd and can get into pretty dry material. I also like reading historical stuff. But Female Chauvinist Pigs sounds cool--I'll have to check it out.

    Here are some things I like, some of it kind of old-school:

    Bitch
    magazine--fun.

    Woman on the Edge of Time (novel by Marge Piercy--and her poetry blows me away).

    The essay A Room of One's Own (Virginia Woolf).

    The Feminine Mystique (Betty Friedan). It's still good reading, and it's cool to read the book that kicked off the 1960s wave of feminism.

    Anything by Simone de Beauvoir; The Second Sex is probably considered the most important feminist book she wrote. I prefer her creative writing, esp. La femme rompue.

    A Vindication of the Rights of Women by Mary Wollstonecraft (her daughter Mary Shelley wrote Frankenstein). It's still actually pretty readable, depending on your tastes. I admit I'm into English literature of bygone centuries.

    Although it may not be quite what you were asking for, I think part of feminism is understanding women's lives in other cultures. So I also recommend a book called Guests of the Sheik by Elizabeth Fernea. Great, nonjudmental inside look at women's private lives in Iraq in past decades.

    For something more edgy, Mary Daly's Gyn/Ecology: The Metaethics of Radical Feminism.

    Then there are the more challenging reads--by people like Julia Kristeva or Catharine MacKinnon. I've never tackled an entire book by either of these thinkers, but they're a couple of important ones who should be mentioned. Maybe just looking for a feminist reader of some sort--a collection of works--would give you a better idea of what you do and don't like. Meaning, I've read shorter works by these women and others and didn't get interested enough to pursue their book-length works.

    Also, Germaine Greer's The Female Eunuch is a book I really enjoyed when I was younger. She puts some people off, but I think she's cool.

    Kate Millet wrote a book called Sexual Politics that was considered important in its day (1970). More interesting to me, she wrote a memoir-ish book called The Looney-Bin Trip about her bipolar disorder. If you can see where issues concerning madness and those concerning womanhood might intersect, Looney-Bin could appeal to you.

    Last thing that comes to mind right now is that feminist studies and gay/lesbian studies often overlap. Adrienne Rich wrote this article "Compulsory Heterosexuality and Lesbian Existence," in which she introduced her idea of the Lesbian Continuum, which I really found helpful when I learned about it. Evidently it appears in her book Blood, Bread, and Poetry, but I haven't read the entire book, just the essay.
    Last edited by Shinola; August 8th, 2009 at 01:09 AM.
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    Elite Member LaFolie's Avatar
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    ^Outstanding list, Shinola. I'll bookmark it.
    I don't want to perish like a fading horse - best lyric ever

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    Elite Member Shinola's Avatar
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    ^^Oh, yay! My investment in higher education does pay off from time to time.

    Also, bell hooks (Ain't I a Woman?) and Audre Lorde--two important black feminists. Lorde wrote an essay ("The Master's Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master's House") that critiques most feminism as racist; she was seen as attacking white feminists and caused a big stir.

    Angela Davis's autobiography (I think it's just called Angela Davis) is good, especially if you have any interest in the Black Panthers. Some of her other books might actually be better than the early autobio, but I haven't read any of them yet.
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    Elite Member Honey's Avatar
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    Thanks, wow I have a lot of ideas now

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    Elite Member chartreuse's Avatar
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    i totally second ariel levy's female chauvinist pigs & ain't i a woman by bell hooks. honestly, i read anything by bell hooks that i can get my hands on...i lurve her.
    white, black, puerto rican/everybody just a freakin'/good times were rollin'.


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    I have just finished reading Female Chauvinist Pigs, loved that book and I reckon that every woman should read it. Skin by Dorothy Allison is good too. There is also The Butcher's Wife by Li Ang is fictional but inspired by female oppression in Asia. I would recommend Andrea Dworkin and Catherine Mckinnon but that is considered too extreme for some.

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    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    i second 'the handmaid's tale'

    i remember liking susan faludi's 'backlash: the undeclared war against american women' back when i first read it in the early 90s.

    i quite like Úlisabeth badinter too. though a lot of her work pisses off a lot of other feminists.
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

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    Elite Member Tiny Pixie's Avatar
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    I love Badinter's books. I think she pisses off a lot of feminists because these so called feminists haven't had a look at the definition for a long time.
    Fluctuat nec mergitur
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    It's from the 90's but Naomi Wolf's "The Beauty Myth" is worth a read.
    When your daughter plays "House," she pretends to be an annoying doctor with a pill-addiction and a limp.

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