The women’s movement has transformed British society since the 1960s. In this contentious and controversial book leading feminist writer Ros Coward asks, is it now holding us back?
When women set out to change the world and their place in it in the 1960s and 1970s it seemed they had a long struggle ahead. Educational standards for girls were lower, they were not expected to take on serious jobs, women did not get paid as much as men in identical jobs, they were not given maternity provision (not least because they were not expected to work after getting married, let alone having children). Women’s health was not researched as thoroughly as men’s, there were few women doctors, politicians, senior managers…
Within a generation, our world has been transformed into one in which women are assumed to be the equals of men. Indeed, many feminists continue to argue that women are superior to men. But in a world in which girls consistently attain better exam results than boys, achieve a higher percentage of university places, are more likely to get jobs and whose expectations – of flexible working lives – are more attuned to the needs of the modern workplace, such a suggestion seems as discriminatory as the world of the 1960s was to women.
In this controversial, hard-hitting and myth-debunking book, Ros Coward looks at feminism’s achievements and asks that most un-PC of questions: do we need feminism any more? Or is it damaging of real relations between men and women, demonizing men and denying them the right to understanding and equality in a world that is harsher for them than ever before?
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The women’s movement has transformed British society since the 1960s. In this contentious and controversial book, leading feminist Rosalind Coward asks, is it now holding us back?
Feminism has been one of the most successful social movements of the twentieth century. So much so, in fact, that young women today take for granted many of the principles that their mothers struggled so long to establish.
When women set out to change the world and their place in it in the 1960s it seemed they had a long struggle ahead. Yet, within a generation, our world has been transformed into one in which women are assumed to be the equals of men. So where do we go from here? And what are the consequences of this success? Should women continue to campaign for equal opportunities, financial independence and sexual freedom, or is it time not only to reassess what women want but to look at society as a whole?
Columnist and author Rosalind Coward argues that we now need to consider seriously the lives of boys and men. The social fabric of the UK has changed dramatically in the last thirty years and there is no longer a clear-cut distinction between male advantage and female disadvantage. Many people blame feminism for the breakdown of family life, so surely it is time to face up to the movement’s failures as well as its undoubted successes.
'Sacred Cows' looks critically at feminism’s achievements and asks that most un-PC of questions – do we need feminism anymore or is it damaging relations between men and women, demonizing men and denying them the right to understanding and equality in a society that is harsher for them than ever before?
PRAISE FOR ROSALIND COWARD
“Vigorous intelligent, funny essays on women and pleasure – an accessible instruction manual on how to differentiate between knowing what one likes and liking what one knows”
“Perceptive and challenging essays on food, beauty and fiction as the operation of female sexuality through other means”
THE WHOLE TRUTH
“Probably the first book which challenges these myths of the wholesome, the good, and the natural … she “excavates” the deep roots of modern beliefs, regarding them as symptoms of how individuals see society and themselves”
“A book of sparkling intelligence”
OUR TREACHEROUS HEARTS
“Courageous and timely. Coward takes a hatchet to the myth of women as bound together in solidarity and friendship, in contrast with the thrusting competition of men”
ANGELA NEUSTATTER, 'New Statesman'
“From a hard-line feminist point of view, women have turned out to be a bit of a disappointment; despite years of consciousness-raising, they will persist in wanting the wrong things. 'Our Treacherous Hearts' is a courageous attempt to face this question”
Ros Coward is the author of Female Desire and Our Treacherous Hearts. She writes a weekly column in the Guardian.
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Book Description HARPERCOLLINS PUBLISHERS LTD, 1999. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 2555514