Monday, 21 August 2017

Everywoman: One Woman’s Truth About Speaking the Truth by Jess Phillips

Jess Phillips is a British Labour Party MP for Birmingham Yardley and an MP who's reputation definitely precedes her. She's known for being a staunch feminist who speaks her mind and so going into this book, I knew it'd be boldly written. When I started reading it though, I quickly how little I knew about her own story and work.

'Everywoman' is a hybrid between a biography and a feminist manifesto; each chapter entitled "The Truth about ... Speaking Up ... Equality ... Violence ... Sisterhood etc. Drawing on her experiences in her personal life, work with Women's Aid, work as an MP; she sheds light on gender inequality in different domains in society.

It's fascinating to have an insight into life in Westminster and I felt like she really humanises the political process. And because of her work with Women's Aid and, growing up in a working class background, I felt like she speaks with real authority on the ways we as a country have to go to gain social and economic parity.

It may not be the best written of boks; parts of it felt quite clunky and I didn't always understand the way in which the book had been divided - for instance the whole book really is about speaking up and equality and yet the two also have their own chapters. So at times it was hard to know what this book is really supposed to be.

But she writes with such clarity and honesty. Her voice is unapologetic and her frustrations, hopes for the future and urgency for change leap from the page. It's a quick read, very refreshing and one that left me feeling really empowered.


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