Books Abroad, The Global Women’s Caucus Feminist reading group, is excited to kick off the new year with an unforgettable read about the roots of misogyny, written by world renowned classicist Mary Beard.
You might wonder what a learned Cambridge don, professor of classics, scholar of Ancient Roman and Greek civilizations, and Britain’s best-known classicist can tell our modern “me-too” world about feminism, but the answer is, “a lot.”
Beard is an indomitable feminist, and her new best-selling book Women and Power, is an engaging and educated search back into antiquity to find the roots of misogyny. To quote The Guardian, “[r]eading it in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, it seems utterly, dreadfully convincing. Mute women; brutal men; shame as a mechanism for control; androgyny and avoidance as a strategy for survival.” But Beard doesn’t keep us in the past. What she uncovers for us in the classics has bearing on our leaders today and sensitizes us to the world around us. And she even offers remedies. It’s a slim volume (115 pages), but what Mary Beard writes is powerful and complex.
A manifesto that is erudite, powerful and complex… and more importantly, for non-classicists, delightfully readable.