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Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions

4.08  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,559 Ratings  ·  125 Reviews
Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions--a phenomenal success that sold nearly half a million copies since its original publication in 1983--is Gloria Steinem's most diverse and timeless collection of essays. Both male and female readers have acclaimed it as a witty, warm, and life-changing view of the world--"as if women mattered." Steinem's truly personal writing is here ...more
Paperback, Second Edition, 432 pages
Published October 15th 1995 by Holt Paperbacks (first published January 1st 1983)
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Jerome Baladad
Aug 19, 2009 Jerome Baladad rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: all non fiction writers
I bought my copy from a thrift shop because I was curious to know how Ms Steinem did a gig as a Playboy bunny in order to come up with an article that has at least 43 pages of this book. I was way more than satisfied by that article, and learned a lot from her. Imagine her doing the gig, and living to tell the story to all curious readers like myself. And continuing with the reading of book after putting it down in the meantime, so as to focus on my other readings, I rediscovered my copy again. ...more
Kendra
Oct 14, 2012 Kendra rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
I grew up with a lot of choices. I was able to decide what to do with my life, who to love, and how to act day-to-day. It wasn't all that long ago, however, when I would not have had those rights as a woman in America.

Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions is a great reflection on the struggles many before me have had to bear in order to make my liberties a reality. As interesting for me as the historical context of this book is the realization that many women, even in today's society, still d
...more
Chris
What Steinmem would say would violate terms of service and make my laptop blow up.


Cassandra
Jul 11, 2009 Cassandra rated it it was ok
Even the more potentially likable parts of the book were tainted with fanaticism. For instance, I was looking forward to reading Steinem's essay on transsexualism, but it was misinformed and judgmental. I doubt the woman even has any idea of how it feels to be gender dysphoric. And then there was the exposé on Playboy bunnies, which was ruined by Steinem's heavy-handedness and overstatement. The woman has the sensibilities of a Catholic nun when it comes to sexuality, if you ask me. And that's a ...more
Jess
Aug 03, 2015 Jess rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: feminism, non-fiction
My girlfriend wished to read this book, and since it was at my local library I picked it up. After she finished it I went ahead and decided to read it myself.

The book itself is a little dated, most of the articles are anywhere from 1960-1985, so some articles were a little uninteresting. Oh the flip side, because of the age of some of the articles, it made it very interesting to see how much has changed in the last few decades.

I am very new to feminism myself and a lot of things were shocking an
...more
Julia Reed
Jul 25, 2012 Julia Reed rated it it was amazing
It's still unclear to me how I made it through four years of Smith Colleage without ever reading "Outrageous Acts and Everday Rebellions," probably Gloria Steinem's most well known book. I'm glad that I finally got around to it, and I strongly encourage all of my fellow equality-minde sisters (and brothers) to pick this up.

"Outrageous Acts" is not really one book, but a collection of essays and articles by Steinem stretching over most of her career. From her famous/infamous "I was a Playboy Bun
...more
Eva
Jun 28, 2013 Eva rated it liked it
Interesting to read a broad swath of Steinem's work. I didn't know she was originally a journalist, so this book had essays ranging from political profiles to her undercover expose titled "I was a Playboy Bunny".

Some things I found interesting:

- Some of the issues she mentions strike me as being in the past, happily -- like women being preferentially let go since they are perceived as not needing their jobs as much as men.

- "Ms." wasn't really used until the 70s. From Wikipedia: "In February 19
...more
blue-collar mind
I read this book around 1986; picked up while working as a community organizer in Ohio, trying to quickly to fill as many holes in my radical education as possible. It was my first feminist reading in long form and I kept it with me for the better part of a decade, re-reading parts when I felt like I needed a reminder. After reading it the first time, I remember that I felt clearer and sadder, clearer because of the no-nonsense and practical way that Steinem wrote, and sadder because I could fin ...more
Angela
Nov 19, 2014 Angela rated it really liked it
Shelves: fem
I'm writing this review in November 2014. At the moment:

- It's illegal for a woman in Saudi Arabia to drive a car.
- Women in the US earn less than men for the same work.
- Only 10% of Wikipedia's editors are women, 11% of open source software contributors are women, and don't even get me started on trying to be an entrepreneur while female.
- This happened last month.

And so on.

Also, as a lady who writes sci-fi and loves science/tech, I sometimes run into some - hmm, what's the technical word? - i
...more
Allison Hiltz
Jan 02, 2015 Allison Hiltz rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, 2013
Review from The Book Wheel:

About two months ago, during a class simulation, I was in the hallway speaking with several male classmates. Despite that fact that I had done my research and was an active participant, 90% of the men I was with completely ignored me, despite my overt attempts to join the conversation. It was so bad, in fact, that all but one of them walked away while I was still talking. Infuriated, I clapped my hands loudly and demanded that they listen to me. Had I not just been tre
...more
Allan
Jun 27, 2012 Allan rated it really liked it
In the 1980s I was in a relationship with a woman with a comprehensive feminist bookshelf. Along the way, I pulled down nearly every book and read a few cover to cover. Many of the books I didn't regard as well written. Some of the books had a lot to say nevertheless. More than a few put a lot of energy into saying things I didn't regard as constructive. The one book that seemed to combine authenticity and insight and exposition was Gloria Steinem in her essay on her experience as a Playboy Bunn ...more
Miranda
Aug 01, 2010 Miranda rated it liked it
I'm glad I read this, and I wish I had sooner. Many of her battle cries seem moot now, which is awesome, but some things really made me uncomfortable (good, right?). Let's ramble on about one thing!

I know that plenty of aspects of my personality are "feminine" (eg, liking to have a good cry, playing dumb to avoid conflict) and that I've used them to feel safe in not asking more of myself. I've matured being self-aware enough to recognize this, but not empowered to change (esp. with the comfort t
...more
Dana Clinton
Jun 13, 2015 Dana Clinton rated it it was amazing
Had this great collection of essays by Gloria Steinham for 10 years buried in my to-be-read pile, then I read it bit by bit, amazed by the perceptions and intelligence of this early star of "true" feminism (a concept ill understood by current generations and often ill treated as well....). It would be great if all young women today took the time to read and ponder these essays. Among the least interesting is probably the first one, where she recounts her experience going underground as a Playboy ...more
Michelle
As Gloria Steinem once wrote, "we need to know the history of our sisters" and that's exactly why I was interested in reading this book.

Emma Watson was recently appointed (fall 2014) the United Nations Women Goodwill Ambassador and gave a passionate speech calling for gender equality and that we need to stop thinking of feminism as "men hating". Very true. The UN then launched the He for She Campaign and feminism seemed to be back out in the open/mainstream media with all it's supporters and al
...more
Zach Gray
Jan 30, 2015 Zach Gray rated it it was amazing
Shelves: feminism
Feminism 101.

I enjoyed and learned from every essay in this collection. I can't think of another collection of any kind that I could say that about.


A couple of my favorite passages:

From Why Young Women Are More Conservative:
"As young women, whether students or not, we’re still in the stage most valued by male-dominant cultures. We have our full potential as workers, wives, sex partners, and childbearers. That means we haven't yet experienced the life events that are most radicalizing for women:
...more
Viola
Sep 21, 2011 Viola rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am compelled to begin my review with a rant on the status of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA).

As I was reading this book, I came across references to the ERA quite a few times. Not knowing much about this amendment, I went online to look up its history and to see when it was ratified. I was absolutely astonished by what I found. It has not been ratified. It is 2011! It is nearly 30 years past the publication of this book. Americans live in a society that many consider (notwithstanding those wh
...more
Eva Howard
Dec 21, 2013 Eva Howard rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
"Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions" is a collection of feminist essays, covering topics ranging from Steinem's mother's almost life-long struggles with depression, to her experience going undercover as a Playboy Club bunny, to our society's expectations of women. I have hardly learned anything about feminism in school, so I thought I would take my learning into my own hands; this book was the right mix of information and good writing to keep me interested. Although I have read feminist non ...more
Emily
Nov 29, 2012 Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In spite of the rating, I really can't recommend this book enough. The missing star is for some now outdated research, some phrasing I don't agree with, and the fact that because of the nature of this book, a collection of essays written over many years, that some of the information was repetitive.

With all that out of the way, let me say that you can't appreciate where you are without knowing where we've been. I took a Women's History course in college, but it focused primarily on first wave fe
...more
Martha
Nov 10, 2013 Martha rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone interested in modern feminism
This book is part personal reflection, part social critique, and part history, written in the 1960s through the '80s, but updated with commentary in 1995.

I was probably about 10 or 12 years old when Gloria Steinem first became nationally known as a feminist. The book was a great reminder of things I'd forgotten about Steinem and about history -- particularly feminist history -- and it filled in details about people and events I wasn't aware of at the time. The essay "Houston and History" in part
...more
E
Mar 24, 2011 E rated it liked it
Shelves: politics-history
While of course Patriarchy is FAR from over, the book is quite outdated and I read it for historical purposes. The American people owe so much to activists like Steinem. When she speaks of the era in which she was raised, I realize how integral Title IX, comprehensive sex education and strong (non-sexualized) female role models were to the era in which I was raised. Yet whether Steinem recognizes it or not, the feminists of my generation have also brought about tremendous progress since we came ...more
Gilahk
Apr 02, 2016 Gilahk rated it really liked it
I expected the essays to be more dated, but sadly they were not. There were several times when Steinem stated confidently that in another 20 years or so the ERA amendment to the constitution would be ratified and it never was. The right to have an abortion is still hotly contested, there is still an income inequality between the salaries of men and women doing the same work, there is still a problem getting adequate child care and family leave. I enjoyed reading about the history of the feminist ...more
Liz
Sep 29, 2015 Liz rated it it was amazing
This book was my introduction to the amazing Gloria Steinem. My U.S. History teacher in high school who was a super-feminist recommended this book to me, and I am so glad she did!
I liked just about every piece in the book, especially "If Men Could Menstruate" which I quote on at least a weekly basis! Reading Steinem's experience as a playboy bunny, and then Hugh Hefner's response to her expose on Playboy was worth the price of the book. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves feminism.
...more
Emily
Jun 23, 2014 Emily rated it it was amazing
My hero, my idol, the person who changed my life. Outrageous Acts is a collection of Gloria Steinem's journal/magazine/newspaper articles from the 60s and 70s when the feminist movement was being ignited and carried. This book covers everything from Steinem's childhood with her mentally unstable mother, to female body acceptance and celebration. Steinem is profoundly talented at writing from the heart; her narrative voice echoes in your life as the friend you never knew you needed. She is an abs ...more
Rickie
Dec 20, 2012 Rickie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow. This collection of essays was an eye opener for me. As a 30-something woman, I have to appreciate what Gloria and "the second wave of feminism" fought for much like she appreciated the suffragists of the late 19th century. What really amazed me was how much is still the same and the fight that is still left ahead of us. It's easy to read in stages when you have a few minutes here and there. The essay on what the world would be like if men menstruated made me laugh out loud...definitely wort ...more
Gia
Jul 13, 2013 Gia rated it it was amazing
Hands down, this is one of the best books I have ever read. I found this book at a thrift store for very cheap, and read it in its entirety on the beach.

I loved this book! I am mad at myself for taking so long to find it and then read it. Yes, it is a little dated, but unfortunately a lot of the issues women were dealing with and fighting in the 60's through the 80's, we are still dealing with today. I especially liked the article about Hitler and Nazi Germany and anti-choice zealots.
Alex
Jul 17, 2007 Alex rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: women everywhere.
This book is a compilation of essays written between 1970 and 1985 or so, and while the pieces can seem outdated at times, they're also part of the canon of feminist thought. Steinam raises a million points that make you examine patriarchy in everyday life (Who leads conversations? How do we change our voices when talking to people of different genders?) The newest wave of feminism is excluded, but it's an wonderful look at our mothers' generation.
Alisa
Feb 22, 2016 Alisa rated it it was ok
Liberal White Feminism 101. It is engagingly & accessibly written, and it was an important piece of the consciousness-raising puzzle for me when I was a teen trying to figure stuff out - but I wouldn't choose to pass it on to someone else in need of the same, because there are far better introductory feminist texts that aren't so limited by gender essentialism, so dismissive of trans experience, and so faithful in the political process.
Stella
My first Gloria Stainem. I have had her books for years and somehow never got around to reading them. Enjoyed her, still very relevant, views on different issues such as race, politics and mostly women's issues.

I particularly loved her essay on Marilyn Monroe. Just a few excerpts I highlighted:

"Compared to Marilyn, Jane Russell seemed in control of her body and even of the absurd situations in this movie. Perhaps it was the uncertainty in the eyes of this big, blond child-woman; the terrible de
...more
Betty
Jun 23, 2010 Betty rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2010
A collection of essays from the mid-sixties to mid-eighties, with copious introduction and footnotes bringing things more up to date (to the late-nineties, at least). It's obvious why she's such a powerhouse; she's a brilliant, sensitive, funny writer with a wealth of knowledge. It's wonderful to see the origins of second-wave feminism- to see how far we've come and how much there is still to be done. Highly recommended.
Brea
Jan 06, 2013 Brea rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-i-own, feminism
Well now I am good and depressed. Between this book, my current state of mind as a stay-at-home mom (have I derailed my entire future as anything but a mom?), the recent election season, and the even more recent rape allegations/chaos out of Steubenville...I would like to declare feminism absolutely, positively still relevant and necessary!

Also I would like a Xanax.
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Gloria Marie Steinem (born March 25, 1934) is an American feminist, journalist, and social and political activist who became nationally recognized as a leader of, and media spokeswoman for, the women's liberation movement in the late 1960s and 1970s. A prominent writer and key counterculture era political figure, Steinem has founded many organizations and projects and has been the recipient of man ...more
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“Now, we are becoming the men we wanted to marry. Once, women were trained to marry a doctor, not be one.” 3 likes
“How long before both women and men are allowed to see self-respecting rebellion as a lifelong possibility?” 2 likes
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