My Feminist To-Be-Read List
Last week was International Women’s Day! It was a great day and it made me think about what women’s writing I would read next on my feminist TBR.
For anyone who is not aware, I am a feminist. A highly stigmatised, probably out-of-date term, for gender equality.
I am often told not to be too feminist and I am always getting trolled for being one. But I stand my ground.
Since it was International Women’s Day last week, this month I want to talk more about feminism, sexism, and women’s writing!
But for now, let’s start with my To-Be-Read list of Feminist Literature! I have seven books to discuss, so let’s jump in!
A recent phenomenon in crowdfunding books, Nasty Women is a collection of essays by many women on different cultures and through different viewpoints about being women in this day and age. A hugely popular book on social media that has received rave reviews for its timely publication and topics this is a book to get your hands on! I can’t wait to read it!
I bought this for a Waterstones Book Club but unfortunately, it arrived over 3 weeks later and I was unable to read it in time. But I want to. This is a fairly famous book with a fairly famous title and explores the perceptions of bodies and body issues within feminism. It’s not all about eating disorders, fashion, and bodily perception but also the effects of sex, family, abuse, and other hard-hitting topics on our bodies and our minds.
I remember when this first came out not understanding why the newspapers why were making such a fuss. I was only about 6 years old but I remember there being a lot of discussion about it and the topic it covers, namely being a woman and having a vagina. It is a celebration of female sexuality covering fantasies, homosexuality, and heterosexuality, perceptions of sexuality, and the stigma attached. It’s a comedy and it’s hard-hitting as it is funny and relevant.
I’ve yet to read Bad Feminist, which is also on my TBR, and I will do it! Eventually! But I recently found a copy of Difficult Women in my favourite bookstore and had to buy it. This is a collection of short stories by Roxanne Gay about women in difficult situations. There’s a story about a woman who pretends not to notice when her husband changes places with his twin, a black engineer who moves upstate to start anew amidst new gossips and stories, a story about a stripper putting herself through college…and a few more! It’s a realistic, hard look at women’s living within America.
I actually have two Louise O’Neill books on here as I still haven’t got around to them, but I want to. Asking for It is set in a small town in Ireland about a girl who was popular, well-loved, and had everything until one night she is raped and suddenly she’s labeled a slut and humiliated. It is a horrible yet unfortunately realistic story about women/girls who have been raped in modern-day Ireland.
A very Handmaid’s Tale-esque book: Only Ever Yours explores a world when girls, or eves, are designed rather than born. They get only 3 options within life and that is to become a concubine, a companion, or being chaste. And the tagline is quite haunting: Only the Best will be chosen. Only the Men will decide. Jeannette Winterson says that O’Neill writes a scalpel.
Recently released, Jess Phillips is a Northern MP for Manchester. She started off working within Women’s Aid and through the realities of that job she decided to run for MP. She was successful. This book is a down-to-earth depiction of life within government and she explores topics from her life, her work at Women’s Aid, the effects of Brexit, and also the murder of Jo Cox. It is raw and honest writing and a read I can’t wait to get started with soon!
So there are seven books for me to get on with. I have quite a few more on my feminist to-be-read list but I will get to them another time.
If you have any suggestions for feminist books let me know in the comments below or tweet me at @ElliePilcher95!