"We live in a society where sex is used against women as much as it’s used by women. Sexy Feminism calls foul on that (and other) double standards—and makes manifest my frequent observation that feminists are almost always the sexiest people in the room.” —Jennifer Baumgardner, author of F’em!: Goo Goo, Gaga, and Some Thoughts on Balls
Not your mother’s feminism! A humor-filled action plan for an accessible, cool, and, yes, even sexy brand of 21st-century feminism
Feminism can still seem like an abstract idea that is hard to incorporate into our hectic, modern lives, but Jennifer Keishin Armstrong and Heather Wood Rudúlph show how the everyday things really matter. In an age when concern-trolling, slut-shaming, and body-snarking are blogosphere bywords, when reproductive rights are back under political attack, and when women are constantly pressured to “have it all,” feminism is more relevant than ever. For many young women the radicalism of the Second Wave is unappealing, and the “do me” and “lipstick” feminism of the Third Wave feels out of date. Enter Sexy Feminism. It’s an inclusive, approachable kind of feminism—miniskirts, lip gloss, and waxing permitted. Covering a range of topics from body issues and workplace gender politics to fashion, dating, and sex, Sexy Feminism is full of advice, resources, and pop culture references that will help shape what being a feminist can look like for you.
“Genius! Sexy Feminism is a delicious primer for budding feminists (and the feminist-curious), as well as a sigh of relief for long-term third-wave feminists who long to be understood and are tired of explaining our beliefs. Jennifer and Heather do an outrageously good service to us all by bringing feminism into its sexy, confident maturity.” —Katie Goodman, feminist comedian and actress
Co-founders of SexyFeminist.com, Armstrong and Rudulph combine their advice in a practical, if unoriginal, guide to living as a "21st-century feminist." With sections on waxing, plastic surgery, make-up, dieting, and more, this book has potential as a starting point to empower vulnerable girls, but it doesn't reveal anything new to those women already aware of society's objectification of them. Although Armstrong and Rudulph almost always conclude that one's reasons behind using stereotypically "anti-feminist" tools such as make-up are what make a choice feminist or not (are you doing it for you or for a man?), many chapters are strongly critical of women who pursue more controversial routes, such as plastic surgery, and this tone will feel judgmental to many contemporary feminists (those who made it past the Cosmopolitan-esque aesthetic, at least). The highlight of the book is definitely the personal stories that Armstrong and Rudulph include, balancing out the rest of the book's judgmental tone. While this book isn't going to shatter any foundations, the catchy style, solid advice, and personal stories make it decent self-help choice to encourage the next generation to become critical and confident young women.