Women & Power: A Manifesto by Mary Beard

Women & Power: A Manifesto

At long last, Mary Beard addresses in one brave book the misogynists and trolls who mercilessly attack and demean women the world over, including, very often, Mary herself. In Women & Power, she traces the origins of this misogyny to its ancient roots, examining the pitfalls of gender and the ways that history has mistreated strong women since time immemorial. As far b...

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Women & Power: A Manifesto Reviews

  • Nicola

    I pretty much wanted to underline the whole thing. Review coming in The Big Issue soon.

  • Becky

    I will get straight to the point, with no ladylike silly shally.... this is bloody brilliant.

  • Joanna Flis

    A very important book. Loud voice about voiceless women.

  • Flapper72

    Far too short but fantastic. Until a few years ago I had thought that feminism was something that was necessary but as I get older, read more, think more, experience the world more, I realise just how far we have to go. Mary Beard is an amazing, balanced woman who explains what happened in ancient cultures and find analogies with our world today. It's completely up to date - how the media treated Hiliary Clinton with regards to DT in the most recent American Election - and how it continues to tr

    Far too short but fantastic. Until a few years ago I had thought that feminism was something that was necessary but as I get older, read more, think more, experience the world more, I realise just how far we have to go. Mary Beard is an amazing, balanced woman who explains what happened in ancient cultures and find analogies with our world today. It's completely up to date - how the media treated Hiliary Clinton with regards to DT in the most recent American Election - and how it continues to treat Theresa May. Words we continue to use for women, the fact that women who succeed in politics seem to focus on 'women's issues' and that, historically, women have always succeeded when achieving something for women. They're obviously not good enough to do anything else. The other thing that Beard mentioned was the way that woman are berated by social media (something that she has been subject to). She didn't moan in any way about how awfully she has been treated (and she has been) but, as ever, used evidence base and plenty of awful exampled. Dianne Abbott really has been treated awfully on twitter. This book is really far too short. I am hopeful that this is a taster for more writing as her works are always amazingly well written, sourced and thought provoking. More please!!

  • Sarah

    A fantastic couple of lectures entitled 'The Public Voice of Women' and 'Women in Power'. The first one is a confrontation with public silencing of women throughout history, from Telemachus to Twitter. The second one examines how patriarchal myths like Medusa are still used today to undermine women in power, especially in politics. Loved it, I just wish this carried on longer. Notebook at the ready!

  • Jasmine
  • Victoria (Eve's Alexandria)

    Read in one late-train-journey gulp and very much enjoyed. There isn’t a lot new here from a feminist theory perspective but I really appreciated how Mary Beard foregrounds the impact of speech and speech imagery. It’s engaging, thoughtful and so inventive in the connections made between the classical and the contemporary world. I just wish it was longer, with more space to expand.

  • Karina Read

    I very much enjoyed reading this collection of two of Mary Beard’s lectures on women & power. In all honesty I enjoyed the second essay/lecture (Women in Power) more than the first (The Public Voice of Women) but both explored how elements of classical art and mythology portrayed their beliefs on the position women held (or should hold) in everyday life and how that has filtered down the years and still influences our society today. I found the exploration and modern use of Medusa (mainly he

    I very much enjoyed reading this collection of two of Mary Beard’s lectures on women & power. In all honesty I enjoyed the second essay/lecture (Women in Power) more than the first (The Public Voice of Women) but both explored how elements of classical art and mythology portrayed their beliefs on the position women held (or should hold) in everyday life and how that has filtered down the years and still influences our society today. I found the exploration and modern use of Medusa (mainly her head) particularly interesting and somewhat shocking.

    I won’t go too in depth about what Beard discusses as you can read it yourself and make your own judgement about the issues, but I found this enlightening and informative. I found her writing to be very readable and I would definitely purchase an entire book dedicated to the subject of power by her should she get the chance to write one. Beard does mention in her afterward that she would have elaborated further on how we can change and move forward had she written a whole book, but that these were speeches delivered in 2014 & 2017 respectively and she didn’t want to alter them. I would recommend this for anyone who is interested at all in equality or in the history of female power/politics.

  • Monika

    There's really nothing new here, but Mary Beard does a wonderful job bringing classical history/misogyny into the 21st century. My biggest complaint is that it just didn't go far enough. I would have loved a full length book on the subject, and she did raise some really interesting comparisons. It just wasn't fleshed out enough for me, and I think it's a better pick for readers just getting started with feminist texts.

  • Hannah

    Mary is queen.

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