Based on personal opinion, these are my top favorite books on feminism I have come across.
- Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay
I finished this book in a day. I read it front to back two summers ago. It reaffirmed but validated the flaws I had in my philosophies on social structure and modern gender equality. It, through the author’s voice, allowed for a natural growth of adapting to an idea. Feminism. Roxane Gay had her collection of essays published in 2014 and this book greatly inspired me. It reviews the multiple layers of modern feminism and how hard it can be to consistently strive for equality when it’s a concept that is still evolving. When are there exceptions? How should a feminist act? What makes for a good or ‘bad feminist’?
2. We Should all be Feminist by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
This book is a very quick read. It is based off of Adichie’s TED Talk on her personal experiences with being labeled a feminist. I thought this book was very well thought out because it discusses her reaction to the word during various stages of her life. She reviews the adaption and reconfiguration of the word to suit her views rather than the negative ones stereo-typically attached to feminism. My favorite quote from the book would be, “I have chosen to no longer be apologetic for my femaleness and my femininity. And I want to be respected in all of my femaleness because I deserve to be.”. It reaffirms a push to not be any less of who you are and to appreciate one’s self fully.
3. Feminism is for everyone by bell hooks
bell hooks is the pen name for writer Gloria Jean Watkins. In this book, it gives a great historical context to feminism during the 1960s and 1970s. It paints the picture to addressing why some issues are still being brought up for public discussion today (women’s reproductive right), and some things that are not (breaking down societal expectations of men). It’s a good read because there is a sincerity in the opinions given in the book. hooks isn’t trying to assert how right or knowledgeable she is, but simply to inform people on the general philosophy behind feminism.