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Friday, 30 November 2012

Catlin Moran- HOW TO BE A WOMAN BY

review live on bookshow by Beth Hilton This is the blurb from the back of the book: There’s never been a better time to be a woman: we have the vote and the Pill, and we haven’t been burnt as witches since 1727. However, a few nagging questions do remain… Why are we supposed to get Brazilians? Should you get Botox? Do men secretly hate us? Why does everyone ask you when you’re going to have a baby? Part memoir, part rant, Caitlin Moran answers these questions and more in How To Be A Woman – following her from her terrible 13th birthday (‘I am 13 stone, have no friends, and boys throw gravel at me when they see me’) through adolescence, the workplace, strip-clubs, love, fat, abortion, TopShop, motherhood and beyond. Most of the chapters start out as a memoir of her experiences with various parts of being a woman eg periods, sexism, marriage etc, which she describes as “all the times that I - uninformed, underprepared, fatally deluded as to my ability to style out a poncho - got being a woman wrong”. Then they veer off into a more general discussion of the issues from a feminist perspective. So what did I think of it? When I told Steve I was doing a feminist book, he said “ooh, scary”, but it's not like that at all. Moran's not strident, she's not humourless and she doesn't hate men. In fact she "I'm neither 'pro-women' nor 'anti-men'. I'm just 'Thumbs up for the six billion.'" I thought this book was very candid, intelligent, thought-provoking and relatable and most of all, really really funny. It was also moving in parts, especially the bits about childbirth. Most reviews I've read liked the reminiscences of growing up best but I personally liked the more political discussion of the issues. She made some very interesting and intelligent points and I like to think at least as much as I like to be made to laugh. This book does both. She also has a horrible interview with Katie Price which shows why she's the opposite of a feminist icon she's sometimes touted as. This book had a positive effect on me. I've read it twice now and I'm sure I'll dip into it again lots more times. I think all teenage girls should be made to read it. It will make them feel more empowered, if you'll excuse the horrible word, and much more able to shrug all the pressure on women to be a certain way and be actually follow their own paths rather than what the media and old-fashioned sexism dictate. So a big thumbs up from me!

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