Thursday, 15 February 2018

Book Review: Attack of the 50ft Women: How Gender Equality Can Save The World by Catherine Mayer

Title: Attack of the 50ft Women: How Gender Equality Can Save the World

Author: Catherine Mayer

Pages: 352

Publication: 8th March 2017 by HQ

1 line synopsis: What does a gender-equal world look like and how far do we have to go until we reach it?


I think one of the most interesting things about this book is that it’s written by one of the co-founders of the Women’s Equality Party. I found the origins of the party and its accidental creation thought-provoking, in that it raised a lot of issues with the political system in the UK. For example, I had no idea how much you had to pay to stand in a UK election, and how much bureaucracy was involved.

Whilst not all facts and figures in this book were new to me, I thought the way the book was split up was coherent and easy to follow. Also, I did learn new things, for example about women in technology/Silicon Valley and the book also provides a good look at female heads of states which I haven’t read much about prior to reading this. I think for this reason, it’s a great starter for anyone looking to get into feminist literature, particularly books that don’t just look at the negative impact on women but how gender inequality also affects men.

The other thing that makes this book stand out from other books about gender equality is that it takes Iceland, the most gender-equal country in the world, and looks at it as a role model. There is a whole chapter on Iceland and its history with gender equality and a look at how things have changed to make Iceland the feminist goal.

Throughout the book, the feminist utopia of ‘Equalia’ is strived for but these sections were the bits I struggled with most, especially the final chapter which outlines what ‘Equalia’ looks like. Overall though, I thought this was a great look a how gender inequality negatively impacts everyone, and is a hopeful look at how things can and should change. I gave it 4 out of 5 stars, and I recommend it to anyone looking for a gateway feminist book or another book to add to the feminist shelf. Also, it makes for a great audiobook listen!

Does this sound like your kind of thing? Let me know in the comments below! Also, for more of my book reviews, check out my book review catalogue.