The Barbizon: The New York Hotel That Set Women Free by Paulina Bren

The Blurb On The Back:

Welcome to The Barbizon.  New York’s premier women-only hotel. 

Built in 1927, New York’s Barbizon Hotel was first intended as a home for the ‘Modern Women’ seeking a career in the arts.  Over the years its 688 tiny pink ‘highly feminine boudoirs’ housed Sylvia Plath, who fictionalised her time there in The Bell Jar, Joan Crawford, Grace Kelly (notorious for sneaking in men), Joan Didion, Candice Bergen, Charlie’s Angel Jaclyn Smith, Cybil Shepherd, Elaine Stritch, Liza Minnelli, Mona Simpson and a whole host of other writers and actors on the cusp of their careers.  Mademoiselle boarded its summer interns there – perfectly turned out young women, who would never be spotted hatless – as did Katherine Gibbs Secretarial School its students – in their white-gloves and kitten heels – and the Ford Modelling Agency its young models.

Not everyone who passed through the Barbizon’s doors was destined for greatness – for some it was a story of dashed hopes and expectations – but from the Jazz Age New Women of the 1920s, to the Liberated Women of the 1960s, until 1981 when the first men checked in, The Barbizon was a place where women could stand up and be counted. 

You can buy THE BARBIZON: THE NEW YORK HOTEL THAT SET WOMEN FREE by Paulina Bren from Amazon USA, Amazon UK, Waterstone’s or Bookshop.org UK.  I earn commission on any purchases made through these links.

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Blood Moon by Lucy Cuthew

The Blurb On The Back:

During Frankie’s first sexual experience with the quiet and lovely Benjamin, she gets her period.  It’s only blood, they agree.  But soon a graphic meme goes viral, turning their fun, intimate afternoon into something disgusting, mortifying and damaging.  As the online shaming takes on a horrifying life of its own, Frankie begins to wonder: is her real life over?

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The Sex Factor: How Women Made The West Rich by Victoria Bateman

The Blurb On The Back:

Why did the West become so rich?  Why is inequality rising?  How ‘free’ should markets be?  And what does sex have to do with it?

In this passionate and skilfully argued book, leading feminist Victoria Bateman shows how we can only understand the burning economic issues of our time if we put sex and gender – ‘the sex factor’ – at the heart of the picture.  Spanning the globe and drawing on thousands of years of history, Bateman tells a bold story about how the status and freedom of women are central to our prosperity.  Genuine female empowerment requires us not only to recognise the liberating potential of markets and smart government policies but also to challenge the double-standard of many modern feminists when they celebrate the brain while denigrating the body.

This iconoclastic book is a devastating expose of what we have lost by ignoring ‘the sex factor’ and of how reversing this neglect can drive the smart economic policies we need today.   

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Feminism Is … by Alexandra Black, Laura Buller, Emily Hoyle and Dr Megan Todd

The Blurb On The Back:

Feminism is …

… the struggle for equality between women and men.

It didn’t just start with #MeToo.  The fight for women’s rights has been around for hundreds of years.  Today’s feminism is more diverse than ever before and asks all kinds of questions.  How does sexism affect women?  Is gender fixed or fluid?  What is intersectional feminism?

Get to grips with the big issues in this lively introduction, and meet some inspirational rebels who were not afraid to stand up for what they believed.

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Be More RBG by Marilyn Easton

The Blurb On The Back:

Make yourself heard – on and off the bench

Whether you spend your days arguing your case at work, fighting gender discrimination, or raising the next generation of dissenters, call an adjournment and ask yourself,

”What would RBG do?”

Grab your collar and get motivated to change the world with words of inspirational wit and wisdom from Associate Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.  

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The Gender Games by Juno Dawson

The Blurb On The Back:

”It’s a boy!” or “It’s a girl!” are the first words almost all of us hear when we enter the world.  Before our names, before we have likes and dislikes – before we, or anyone else, have any idea who we are.  And two years ago, as Juno Dawson went to tell her mother she was (and actually, always had been) a woman, she started to realise just how wrong we’ve been getting it.

Gender isn’t just screwing over trans people, it’s messing with everyone.  From little girls who think they can’t be doctors to teenagers who come to expect street harassment.  From exclusionist feminists to ‘alt-right’ young men.  From men who can’t cry to the women who think they shouldn’t.  As her body gets in line with her mind, Juno tells not only her own story, but the story of everyone who is shaped by society’s expectations of gender – and what we can do about it.  

Featuring insights from well-known gender, feminist and trans activists including Rebecca Root, Laura Bates, Gemma Cairney, Anthony Anaxagorou, Hannah Witton, Alaska Thunderfuck and many more, The Gender Games is a frank, witty and powerful manifesto for a world in which everyone can truly be themselves.

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Gender, Politics And News: A Game Of Three Sides by Karen Ross

The Blurb On The Back:

From Margaret Thatcher and Benazir Bhutto to Hillary Clinton, women have made great strides in the political arena in recent decades.  Yet studies have shown that media coverage can have a dramatic effect on the public perception of women in politics.  Gender, Politics, News: A Game Of Three Sides explores the origins and evolution of the role of gender in the broader processes of political communication.  Focusing primarily on power, patriarchy, and culture, author Karen Ross reveals the incredibly complex relationships that exist between politics, gender, and media in the modern era.  She probes deeply into the myriad ways in which these issues play out both in the high-octane context of national elections and during the deadline-driven pressures of everyday political reportage.  Topics covered include feminist theories of politics and political communication, gendered journalism, the ways in which women political candidates are framed in news discourse during elections, gender considerations in the role of the political spouse, the differential treatment of women and men politicians by the media and the public in the face of scandal, and many more.  Ross offers a global perspective on issues of gender, politics, and news media with a range of case studies from the US, UK, New Zealand, South American, and more.  Timely and thought-provoking, Gender, Politics, News: A Game Of Three Sides is an important and unique addition to the growing scholarship on gendered political communication, which argues that despite some encouraging moments, politics and news are still primarily jobs for the boys. 

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