Saturday, 20 May 2017

Nasty Women

A day after Donald Trump called Hilary Clinton a "nasty woman"; every man, woman and child showed up on Twitter because  we'd all  rather be "nasty" and carefree 😎 than whatever it is Trump expects women to be. The people (an independent publisher in the UK) over at 404 Ink took note and, got a kickstarter going to  put out a book written by women, on what it's like to be a woman in the 21st century. Months later and voila, here it is - Nasty Women, a collection of essays, interviews and accounts by fearless women who are unapologetically themselves.

This book of course does not and cannot account for every woman's experience in the 21st century and kind-of-low-key-claims-to-do-so. All these women are British and many of them are based in Scotland which is worth bearing in mind. That said, the book really tries to be representative. Even as a woman with my own experiences, this book was a window into so many more. My at times ignorance and preconceptions were definitely checked in the reading of this book. There are essays about race, visibility, class, culture, politics, family, religion, disabilities, contraception, the workplace - and many  if not all the essays, are intersectional.

Not so long ago, I went through a "thing" where I wasn't being treated fairly and in speaking up about it, I was labelled as "difficult". At the time I actually really beat myself up about it because I hate being perceived as being as an unpleasant individual. And that's the issue! We've been conditioned to be "nice" all the time. Speaking up or challenging or questioning things or not smiling or not being a sized  aren't what nice girls do. And because we've been so conditioned to feel this way, these labels "nasty","difficult" are used to silence us.  Because apparently the worse thing that could've happen to me, was being called difficult. Honestly the freedom when you realise how silly this all is is like nothing else.

Like the glorious day on Twitter :') this book reclaims the "nasty woman" label just by presenting intelligent, opinionated, female voices.


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