michelle's Reviews > How to Be a Woman

How to Be a Woman by Caitlin Moran
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's review
Apr 08, 2012

liked it
Read from April 09 to 12, 2012

I enjoyed this, yet not as much as I expected I would.

What prevented me from giving it four or five stars were small things, but significant enough in my mind to not rate it high.

The first is the use of the words "retard" and "tranny". Particularly galling was the use of the latter when she had already taken a small dig at Germaine Greer's transphobia. Being a white cis woman, Moran definitely wrote for an audience like her; no intersectionality was to be found.

Next, I think the memoir sections needed to be more in the past tense rather than the present, if only to reduce some of the confusion.

Some of the generalisations grated. She complains about people making them but goes on to make them herself.

Having said all that ... I think this book would be good for a young girl who is just discovering feminism.

It is awfully funny. But my absolute favourite part is the chapter on abortion. Seems weird to single that out as a favourite, but by telling her story and cutting through the bullshit (which Moran does with all the deeply personal stuff), she made me rate the book a bit higher than I otherwise would.

So while I wouldn't rave about it, I can see how it can have its place among some of the less serious works on feminism.
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