06 Jul 2011

I'm not entirely sure what I thought about this book.  A funny, observant but possibly slightly over-exaggerated memoir of poverty in Wolverhampton, rock writing in London and marriage; the parts on childbirth and abortion were excellently, very powerfully and affectingly done. The feminist bits a) made assumptions about most women (planning weddings from the age of 5, always shopping, knowing what to buy) and b) preached about what to do in order to be a Good Feminist without acknowledging that – surely – many of her readers already would be.

It was very rude in places – I slightly blushed to read it on the bus – but I could see the background in Woman Words Mary Daly type stuff, in wishging to reclaim and celebrate certain words, Simone de Beauvoir made it de rigueur to talk about our Biology as Destiny – and, after all, I partly chose Germaine Greer's "Female Eunuch" as my Sixth Form prize for being Library Prefect because I had already read it and knew it was quite saucy about certain things, but I just wonder how people without a grounding in previous feminist writings will take this (which sounds pretentious, I know) and the research done on Twitter did make me giggle – surely some people just made that stuff up!

I'm glad someone's out there engaging with feminism, and it was a brave book (but amidst all the personal details I don't think we ever lost our virginity, even though we went through pretty well everything else with the author), but I would have liked that acknowledgement of Moran's near-contemporaries (like me!) and I do wonder if it's actually converted anyone to the Cause yet.  But some great read-out-loud moments, too.

So, I still don't know what I thought about it, but I'm glad I read it.