“How to be a woman” Caitlin Moran

HowToBeWoman pb c

artemisiconAs soon as I saw that Jenny Lawson read this book I decided I should read it to. I mean, come on, look at the title!  There is nothing wrong with men reading this book, but this is definitely more aimed at women.   And I definitely think EVERY woman should read it.

Caitlin Moran has written this book half as an autobiography and the other half her opinion.  At first I was a little thrown, how does the title “how to be a woman” have anything to do with her life?  She starts like most biographies, about her early life, but after she’s built her foundation she uses what she’s been through,throughout the rest of her life, to relate back to the issue of being a woman.

The thing I liked about her is even though it is her opinion, she doesn’t show only one side.   There were a sequence of chapters following hers about having children;  have children, do not have children, and the possibility of abortion.  She did not shy away from any topic.  The brought every little topic out to the open and made it okay to talk and think about.  Pubic hair? She talked about it.  Sexism? Right there.

After reading this book I was proud to call myself a feminist.  And no, not the butch, bra-burning, “herstory not history” kind, the kind that can stand up and say “yes I have a vagina, and yes I want to be in control of what happens to it”.  She used the broken window theory to explain feminism.  In a building, if you leave a window broken it eventually will have more broken windows, and be victim to vandals, and then after the tenants leave it will become a place for squatters and bums.  For feminism, how can you fight the bigger picture (like the way women are treated around the world) if we ourselves are still victim to the most basic forms of sexism.  How can we fix the building if we don’t fix the window?

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