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Feminist "self help" books?

(9 Posts)
Tootickyandsnufkin Sat 31-Dec-16 17:20:33

Any recommendations please? Or at least not unfeminist. I'm browsing on Amazon but worry (without having a clue if true) that it might be an area exploiting vulnerability (like dieting books).

VestalVirgin Sun 01-Jan-17 16:12:58

Hm, I think "self help" might be unfeminist in its approach in general.

I can only fuzzily remember the self help books I have read, but they seem to be an awful lot about positive thinking and bootstraps.

Feminism is all about recognizing how the personal is political, and you and your problems don't exist in a vacuum.

What problems do you want to solve?

There are books that recommend women to train men like dogs to achieve happiness in relationships, books that tell women how to imitate men in the workplace to achieve success ... the problems are obvious.

So yes, I am very sure that some self help books exploit vulnerability. I think there are areas where they can be useful, but there are other areas, where they distract from the need for political activism.

I would stay away from books that are explicitly targeted at women but not political in a feminist sense, and moreover only buy a self help book if I am sure (without having read any self help advice) that I am the main cause of the problem, and if the book doesn't just contain encouraging words, but actual strategies for change.

For example, I would buy a book on keeping one's living space in order, as the untidy state of my space is not caused by anything else but me. (I have the time, I just don't use it)

DeepAndCrispAndEvenTheWind Sun 01-Jan-17 16:18:24

Fat is a feminist issue?

Think Dorothy Rowe is pretty respectable, but it's been a while.

What issue is it?

Tootickyandsnufkin Sun 01-Jan-17 16:33:39

Thanks both.

Not really sure what issues. Whole life really - so definitely me at middle of the problem. Starting over after leaving marriage.
(Being happier making friends, finding work, feeling confident as a mother, everything!)

Would like something encouraging, hopeful to read to feel stronger for changes needed. And partly just because have found reading helps me keep going when alone, but done with "miserable" reading.

Downloaded Fat is a feminist issue last night. Reading at moment. Will look up Dorothy Rowe.

TitaniasCloset Mon 02-Jan-17 02:50:38

How to be a woman by Caitlin Moran is fairly cheerful. Not a self help book though.

ICJump Mon 02-Jan-17 04:59:57

I think self care and self love are profoundly feminist things but I've yet to find a self help book which is feminism. Perhaps we should write one

PoochSmooch Mon 02-Jan-17 07:59:12

How about this one, tooticky? A Woman In Your Own Right

It's about assertiveness and communication for women, so might not be 100% what you're looking for. It's been a while since I read it, but it's very woman focused, and I thought it was quite helpful.

MaxineQuordlepleen Mon 02-Jan-17 08:06:22

I second A Woman in your own Right and also The Mirror Within by the same author. Both changed my life in my early 20s.

Tootickyandsnufkin Mon 02-Jan-17 13:41:25

Great. Thanks for more suggestions. Been pondering your post Vestal and will give it more thought. The personal is political has been rattling around in my head. I don't know how I go from where I am to make something meaningful out of it. I feel stuck in my personal situation. Which isn't really feminist I guess. But I am trying to make a connection to the bigger picture.
Will look up the suggestions thanks.

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