May 29, 12
Read from December 06 to 31, 2011
This is an excellent book, a Feminine Mystique for the 1980s. Faludi discusses every aspect of American culture - movies, music, television, fashion, makeup, employment, politics, reproductive rights - and calculatingly tears apart the detractors of feminism, revealing the subtle and covert war waged against women in the 1980s.
Despite this book's being twenty years old, I found it very pertinent to today's world. The past decade has certainly been a time of backlash, ranging from the heavily sexualized images of women in basically everything - music videos, children's shows, etc. - to the increasingly punitive laws implemented to rescind Roe v. Wade and, therefore, women's rights to their own bodies. Just as in the eighties, "news" programs provide statistics about working women and, supposedly, corresponding health issues. I was disturbed as I read this about how little has changed in over twenty-five years. Not to mention, the truth about how manipulated, or fabricated, in some cases, the "statistics" about working mothers or single women are made me furious. I actually had to put this book down a few times because it made me so angry, but angry in a good way. I am very grateful to Susan Faludi for writing such a thorough, well-researched tome about the backlash. This is a book we really needed twenty years ago and need, perhaps even more, right now.
This is a book every American should read, man and woman, to understand why feminism is so essential to our country's anthem of freedom and to open their eyes about what needs to be done.