Women & Power: A Manifesto by Mary Beard
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is a very thought-provoking read, as long as you understand what it is - the texts of two speeches Mary Beard has given in the 21st century. Honestly, I do wish she'd used them as a starting point and written a much longer book about the topic, because I think she is drawing some connections I have not seen before - between classical imagery and modern politics, the cultural precedents for the oppression of women in the oldest literature, etc. She completely blew my mind about incorrect information I had internalized as part of my education, about Elizabeth I and Sojourner Truth, and it just makes me wonder what else she knows that I don't.
I was glad to see that she included a long list of additional readings and resources, but I still think there is work for Mary Beard herself to do in this arena.
The focus of this book is politics and history in the UK but of course there is a healthy dose of the USA in there, as well of some mentions of other world leaders.
It is making me want to go back and read her well-loved book, SPQR: A History of Ancient Rome, because if anyone can bring it to life, surely it is Mary Beard.
The publisher provided a copy of this book through Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.
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