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The Guilty Feminist: From Our Noble Goals to Our Worst Hypocrisies

4.29  ·  Rating details ·  2,517 ratings  ·  262 reviews
In 2015 I described myself as 'guilty feminist' for the first time. My goals were noble but my concerns were trivial. I desperately wanted to close the pay gap, but I also wanted to look good sitting down naked.

From inclusion to the secret autonomy in rom-coms, from effective activism to what poker can tell us about power structures, Deborah explores what it means to be a
Paperback, 336 pages
Published September 11th 2018 by Virago (first published September 6th 2018)
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Emily B
May 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you to netgalley and the publishers for a copy of this book.

I learnt a lot from reading this book and not just about feminism but also about history, and gender.
It also made me start to question the reasons behind my thoughts and my own behaviours or lack there of.

There is so much good advice, wisdom and knowledge in this book that I wish I could store it all in my brain and use when needed.

More than 6 months on and there are still parts of this book that have stuck with me
Apr 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You'd be hard-pressed to find a book that talks about feminism in a more accessible, eloquent, sensitive, empathetic way. It's a book that acknowledges the imperfections of modern feminism and how to improve, how to be more inclusive, how to be better feminists and people. It includes interviews with people from all sorts of different backgrounds, giving variety and diversity of opinion to the book. It's such an enjoyable, funny and brilliant book that you will read in one breath and will feel a ...more
Michael Legge
Sep 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
He dies of shame in the end.
Aug 15, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: feminism, non-fiction
I went into this book not knowing what to expect. In all honesty, I saw this book in the "New release" section in Waterstones, and as soon as I saw the word "Feminist" on the front cover, I thought "Yes Sister! I just HAVE to buy this!"

Apparently, Deborah Frances-White has a podcast, which I have also never tuned into. I may have to rectify that at some point. This book explores feminism in quite a frank way, but I didn't find all of it engaging. It covers the issues women have to deal with in a
Oct 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: four-star
Firstly, I have to admit my ignorance to the highly successful podcast on which the author created and instead chose this book based on its reviews. Although this reads much like a companion guide to the podcast of the same name, its actually easily digestible and thoroughly entertaining as a stand-alone guide to feminism.

The author covers a large range of topics, although a few I expected to read on were not mentioned or discussed minimally. The book addresses individual topics with passion
Katrine Engelhardt  Thomsen
I am a Feminist and Guilty Feminist Podcast fan but .... I did not enjoy this book.
Infact, I would most likely advocate for this being a book your borrow rather than buy.

I tried so hard to imagine the tone being the same inclusive tone as the podcast aims towards, but it just didn't work for me. The flow was off and the mixture between stories about Frances-White's life and own lived feminist experiences (mostly white, cis and middle class) and the immensly dense facts of the history of
Katie Lumsden
Nov 12, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this a very interesting read - comprehensive, enjoyable and thought-provoking at every turn.
Does anyone else find starting new podcasts more intimidating than reading a book? I have no idea why I feel that way, but I do. If a podcast has a backlog of hundreds of episodes, then I just seem to panic and not know where to start, so put it off, listen to old favourites I'm already caught up on, or start a very new podcast with a low episode count. I've had this podcast recommended to be so many times over the years, so when I noticed the podcast creator had released this book, aimed at ...more
"I feel it's my job, as a privileged woman who is not suffering under the most oppressive forces, to do more than let my anger out in random, undirected bursts. I need to turn my anger into influential words and persuasive ideas wherever possible"

"Fish are so woke"

DFW works hard and is constantly challenging herself and white woman feminism and is funny sometimes. Total win. She formulates thoughts I've had eloquently and with panache.

I give it 4 instead of 5 because I felt like although the
Viv JM
This is a really great guide to feminism - it's funny, informative, insightful and inclusive. Loved it!
Lucy Banks
Feb 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A fun, frank exploration of feminism.

I'm a guilty feminist. There, I said it. I believe strongly in women's rights, but seldom dare to voice this fact, for fear of being considered 'one of those types'. As such, this book was of great interest to me!

I've not listened to the podcast (though I probably will do now), so I don't know how much overlap there is, but what you have in this book is a down-to-earth exploration of some of the key issues affecting women today. The struggle to be accepted in
Sep 04, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Most people think that feminists have to be 100% feminist all the time: they can't enjoy dressing up, make up, rom-coms, looking good, flirting etc etc. This book provides a much healthier and more balanced view, essentially saying you can be a feminist but still enjoy all of those things.

It's a clever tactic because it makes feminism accessible to all women (and indeed, all PEOPLE) rather than being this exclusive club of sad, serious women who are more focused on judging and condemning others
Verity Craft
Dec 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If I'd thought that I was fired up about feminism before reading this book, I'm absolutely in flames after reading it. As an obsessed podcast listener, there was much that was familiar and great to revisit, but plenty of new material too. I will be passing this on to everyone I know to read, and will continue trying to make all women and men feminists by listening to the podcast and reading this book. The world will be a better place because of it.
Emilia Barnes
I really love the podcast and so of course this was on the top of my to read pile as soon as I heard of it. It would have been easy for Frances-White to sail along the same lines as the podcast and dish out heart warming, stirring and funny little wisdoms in palatable morsels of comfort and entertainment. But this is the book that men and women alike should read because though it is not angry (or rather not angrily written) and it is entertaining (making it accessible), it opens our eyes to the ...more
Angourie Rice
Feb 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019-favourites
My first 5-star read of the year! Finally!

This was an outstanding book. It made me feel excited, positive and powerful. It's funny and insightful, and it is clear that Deborah Frances-White is both an intelligent and hilarious writer and performer.
I'd recommend this to anyone interested in getting into feminist non-fiction. It's clearly written and also wickedly witty.
Adrian Brown
Disclaimer: I LOVE the Guilty Feminist Podcast. Loved it before DFW wrote this book and love the book. And love the podcast even more now. And love the book more because of the podcast. Nauseous yet? Suck it up, buttercup. DFW is brilliant. All things Guilty Feminist are brilliant. Drink this cool-aid; it'll make you smarter and probably make people (specifically women) like you a little more.

In all seriousness, this is a phenomenal primer on present-day (2019) feminism, with all of it's
Kat Sanders
Oct 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Just read it.
Some of it is familiar, but it all rings true.
Accessible and entertaining.
The insights are intersectional and varied.

The more privilege you have, the more obligation you have to persuade rather than just vent.

If we wont respect the binary and form ourselves into two camps, how will they know who to oppress?

I want to host a party where everyone wears something they already own but would never dare wear.

Freeze and friend was new to me but I can see so many times Ive employed
Karina Webster
Dec 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting discussion around lots of key components of feminism. Its easy to only educate yourself on issues that affect you, and people that look, talk and live like you, but it is important to understand the hugely diverse nature of equality. This book considers what feminism means to people of all genders, races and those with disabilities. Is it different? Why is it different? And what can we do about it?

I particularly liked the suggestions of how to word responses differently in
Becca Housden
I absolutely love the Guilty Feminist podcast and so was the excited when I finally picked up this book. Parts of it are an amazing expansion on things talked about in the podcast, and the inclusion of Deborahs speeches about Brexit and Trump were just as moving in the book as they were when I first heard them.
Other aspects, however felt very repetitive, they were almost verbatim from the podcast and therefore couldnt really hold the readers attention.
On the whole, I feel like it isnt a book I
Jan 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
By far the best introductory book on intersectional feminism I have come across. Deborah Frances-White is an articulate, witty woman who has managed to cram an immense amount of feminist history, nuance, and interviews with a diverse panel of feminists into a single hilarious page turner.

Theres no preaching, theres no talking in circles in order to attempt to address all the issues (problems Ive found with other similar texts) - just well organised and coherent prose. As the creator of a
Oct 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love the podcast and was not disappointed by the book, which was an interesting and entertaining read. Some essential points on feminism and women's experience in the present day. It's very relevant and I've used some of the examples from the book in discussion, particularly with my dad (nothing but respect for men who recognise their privilege), who now uses them in conversations with other people!
Nov 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, feminism
The author discusses different aspects of feminism and how it can become more inclusive. But also that you can like romcoms and wearing high heels and still march for women's rights. Agreed with much of what she said but overall I found this quite thought-provoking.
Anna Johnson
I have read a lot of popular feminist books, and this one is a cut above - more substance, more nuance. Thought-provoking and worth a read.
First read of the year. I was so pleasantly surprised by how inclusive this book was and how the author used it as a platform for others to speak.
Dec 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I picked this up with doubt as I don't usually like books about feminism with this kind of title but the book surprised me totally! It wasn't so much a comedy book but a good feminist book that actually really does look at intersectionality and interviews people from various walks of life and actually tries to look at how we can be more intersectional. I loved it!
Though I've never listened to 'The Guilty Feminist' podcast, I found this book to be hugely interesting, funny and incredibly personable. Though this is, like many good feminist books, a generalised opinion over certain feminist issues, she does what any good ally should do- when she's unqualified in whatever way to talk about a certain issue, like intersectionality, transgender rights, gender identity, disabilities and more, she lets other people do the talking in the form of interviews.

Jun 14, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I thought I was going to love this book but I found it really disappointing. It was repetitive and was lacking the fun take on feminism that I was expecting. I found it hard to follow as the structure was all over the place. I also found it more like a textbook full of facts. It reminded me of Everyday Sexism by Laura Bates but, in that case, you know what you are investing in because Bates doesnt pretend her book is anything other than an informative exploration of sexism in todays society. The ...more
Apr 04, 2019 rated it liked it
Big fan of Guilty Feminist. But the book was somewhat disappointing. It felt repetitive. Good idea to transfer political stand-up comedy to a book but maybe rethink the way? Still, it is worth reading some parts and offers accessible, non-academic intro to feminism while acknowledging and fully embracing theoretical frameworks(e.g. intersectionality)&encouraging readers to call out privileges & exercise inclusion.
Nov 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Brilliant - everyone should read this!
Caitlyn O'dowd
Maybe I wasnt the right audience for this one? I picked up this book months ago and only just finished. I think I was looking for perhaps a nice study of feminism in pop culture and modern day, sort of like Roxanne Gays Bad Feminist. Instead I got pages and pages of interviews lifted off a podcast, general rehashing of feminist theory and very little to tie it all together. Disappointing. ...more
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