Synopses & Reviews
A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
"A modern feminist classic." — The Guardian
From the internationally acclaimed classicist and New York Times best-selling author comes this timely manifesto on women and power.
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 back as Homer’s Odyssey, Beard shows, women have been prohibited from leadership roles in civic life, public speech being defined as inherently male. From Medusa to Philomela (whose tongue was cut out), from Hillary Clinton to Elizabeth Warren (who was told to sit down), Beard draws illuminating parallels between our cultural assumptions about women’s relationship to power — and how powerful women provide a necessary example for all women who must resist being vacuumed into a male template. With personal reflections on her own online experiences with sexism, Beard asks: If women aren’t perceived to be within the structure of power, isn’t it power itself we need to redefine? And how many more centuries should we be expected to wait?
"At just a little over 100 pages, Women & Power: A Manifesto may seem slight, but don't let its size fool you. This book speaks volumes and will not be silenced by Telemachus or anyone else." Sarah E. Bond, Forbes
"Beard always fights back, with humor and the confidence of intellectual authority…It’s fun to read Women & Power. Beard’s slim, elegant, well-illustrated book would fit nicely into a Christmas stocking." Elaine Showalter, The Washington Post
"[A] sparkling and forceful manifesto…The book is a straight shot of adrenaline." Parul Sehgal, New York Times
"A pithy exploration of misogyny’s tangled cultural roots....With clearsightedness and wry humour, this self-described "gobby woman" proves public speech is no longer the preserve of maleness. More power to her." Financial Times
"Beard’s is a manifesto firmly grounded in rigorous academic study made legible for the masses, and her proposal for change as radical as it is reasonable and — we can but hope — realistic." The National
"Beard....is a writer of exceptional erudition and biting wit, and reading her is always a pleasure. This latest manifesto...is no exception." The Guardian
About the Author
A professor of classics at Cambridge University, Mary Beard is the author of the best-selling SPQR and Women & Power and the National Book Critics Circle Award–nominated Confronting the Classics. A popular blogger and television personality, Beard is a regular contributor to the New York Review of Books.