Feminism is a word that is both loved and hated by many. A feminist is seen by most as someone who hates men and is not afraid to show it. In contrast, most feminists want to get married and have children and do normal people stuff (correct me if I’m wrong). Feminists want to have equal rights as men. There are doubtlessly some women who are confused about feminism. It’s not restricted to women, some men are also incredibly ignorant about the movement. So, to help with that, here is a list of twelve books to read if you just don’t know what it means and you want to.
We Should all be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
What am I doing if she’s not on this list? I’ve read this book that is in actuality a TEDx talk, and I think she has her head screwed on right. Go check it out.
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
So, this book is actually set in a dystopian community where almost all of the women are infertile. The few fertile ones left, are sent off to rich people’s homes to bear children for them. These women are actually considered government property. How crude! It is actually being made into a movie, I think it’s a series and you need to check it out.
The Color Purple by Alice Walker
I have read this also and I must say I loved it. It talks about black women in the time that there was still segregation. It’s worth a read and is very informative with respect to women’s rights.
Headscarves and hymens by Mona ElTahawy
This is actually a strong and recently published book that addresses women’s rights in the Middle East. It is a must read and I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to learn about feminism and why it is actually important especially with regards to Muslim women.
Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg
Sheryl Sandberg is the Chief Operations officer at Facebook. In Lean In, she encourages women to be more active in their respective workplaces.
Fat is a feminist Issue by Susie Orbach
I would read it just because of the title. It discusses how we can turn food into a friend and learn to accept ourselves for who we are. The society we currently live in tries to enforce a certain body type as the generally accepted one but in this book, she explains how you can love yourself no matter your size.
Men explain things to me by Rebecca Solnit
In this book, Rebecca Solnit explains what is now known as mansplaining and tries to explain how it is actually an abuse of women’s power. What are you still waiting for? Aren’t you triggered??
The Beauty Myth by Naomi Wolf
As taken from Amazon.com: Naomi Wolf exposes the tyranny of the beauty myth through the ages and its oppressive function today, in the home and at work, in literature and the media, in relationships between men and women. With pertinent and intelligent examples, she confronts the beauty industry and its advertising and uncovers the reasons why women are consumed by this destructive obsession.
Bad Feminist by Roxanne Gay
This is a collection of essays that basically says that while you’re a feminist, you don’t have to hate everything and everyone!
Feminism is for everybody by Bell Hooks
Bell Hooks is a highly respected black feminist and has written several books about feminism. Feminism is for everybody is only one of them.
This is in my opinion, the best book on this list and really should have been number one. Bell breaks it all down. She identifies what feminism is and what it is really about. This book is a must read!
Girls will be Girls by Emer o’Toole
In this witty and funny book, Emer O’Toole explains how gender roles are performed and urges her readers to examine how they perform their gender roles in their individual lives. She also suggests how to begin to play with those genders roles in a way that feels safe.
The Feminine Mystique by Betty Friedman
This book is credited with starting second-rate feminism is the United States. She conducted a research on the ‘problem that has no name’ in the 1960s after finding out that most housewives she knew were unhappy in their marriage. Betty Friedman originally wanted to publish it as an article but no magazine would accept it.