Reviews

Difficult Women: A History of Feminism in 11 Fights, by Helen Lewis

shona_1's review against another edition

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informative inspiring medium-paced

4.0

katieoliver's review against another edition

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informative medium-paced

3.5

amymeganbrown's review against another edition

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5.0

Great book!

imhidinginabook's review against another edition

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hopeful informative reflective medium-paced

2.75


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ashlislibrary's review against another edition

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3.0

I was so looking forward to reading this book as I love feminist history and powerful women, so I’m a little disappointed that I didn’t really like it.
the content was great, I think they used some super interesting case studies that I had never really heard of before. they brought light to important women that our history doesn’t really teach, I love the use of quotes directly from that era and the multiple sources from others at the time. I think my biggest criticism and the reason why I really didn’t enjoy it that much is the writing style. at times it was kind of all over the place, it flicked back and forth a lot and tried to use so many smilies/metaphors and examples- it just complicated the whole thing and made it difficult to read. I think there are books out there that are a lot better written and easier to understand on the topics mentioned in this book.
another huge criticism for me is that the author was asterisk a note that says something like *i’m sorry for the lack of discussion of gay marriage, there isn’t a lot of research out there* and move on as if that is acceptable. I would’ve appreciated even a paragraph or two just to show that we can be represented, rather than a half assed apology as to why we’re being ignored. In the sex chapter, lesbian and bisexual women were not mentioned, we were only mentioned in the love chapter- which really annoyed me, because gay women still have feminist struggles in the bedroom, pls don’t erase that?? I guess overall if you’re going to read a feminist book, I would suggest a different one.

rozzles95's review against another edition

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5.0

A detailed and self aware look at feminism through 11 topics and women who have shaped it. I recommend this book to anyone that finds feminism difficult and unwieldy at times. The way Helen takes the ‘problematic faves’ head on is refreshing and offers this imperfect history space to be read and understood without undermining the cause.

groober's review against another edition

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medium-paced

2.0


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joshuamarks's review against another edition

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4.0

Excellent read

ijustkindalikebooks's review against another edition

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5.0

Covering really important topics throughout history for women, particularly the last one hundred years, this book covers the waves of feminism we have seen and what each one is done and the fights it’s been in to make sure we have the rights we have today. Lewis really delves into these areas so well and uses excellent moments in history and case studies to highlight women’s stories that make this book so easy to fall into and hard to put down.

Some chapters are harrowing to read, especially ‘Safety’ for me, which focuses on the safety of women and domestic violence women have to endure. I myself found this chapter this most difficult to read, however also one of the most illuminating as I recognised in moments what I have seen for myself. And illuminating is something that keeps going on throughout the book as it shines a light on women I haven't heard the stories of, and now want to know more.

This book does contain difficult women, problematic women, women who may not be considered heroes to some, but that doesn’t stop them being important to the women’s movement and this book is clear about what these women believed in but also the impact they had - women such as Marie Stopes for example. I appreciate the honesty the author has when it comes to the women who are shown in this book, something that in looking for the inspirational often gets hidden.

A great book that covers so many perspectives and allows for intersectionality, in a way that makes it readable and very easy to read. For me this would be a good place to begin if you wanted to know about these areas of women’s history and politics as though Lewis does cover big topics, she does explain everything well and it makes for a greater immersive experience.

bookslucyreads's review against another edition

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3.0

I got this as an audiobook from Netgalley. I found it interesting to listen tia me highlighted some women I didn’t know about. It isn’t my usual kind of book but I did enjoy it and the author also narrates the books which I liked.