Notes on Feminism: 7 Books Written By Women To Add To Your Reading List This 2020
1/7 From the top shelf: Trick Mirror: Reflections on Self-delusion by Jia Tolentino
This collection of self-reflexive essays by beloved New Yorker critic, Jia Tolentino, is a touching read. The author's interesting anecdotes enjoy interjections of curb-side philosophy, making this book incredibly engaging, funny, and thought-provoking all at the same time. Tolentino tackles modern-day conflicts and issues through her own experiences with life's daunting challenges. Here, she muses upon culture, both online and in the real-world and just how difficult it is to exist in a world full of double-standards.
2/7 For a dose of romance: Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen
If you're looking to revisit a classic novel, Pride & Prejudice will always prove to be a fun read. Austen's famous first line —"It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife"—sets the tone for the entire book. Written in 1813, its interesting to see how subversive this book can be. Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy both overcome their preconceived notions of being and becoming (as woman and man) through well-written character developments. An inspirational sojourn into the institutions of love and marriage continues to make this novel a classic read even in the year 2020.
3/7 A dose of philosophy: We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche
This Nigerian writer has her hand in many pots. Writing fiction, philosophy, and autobiographical essays, she fast became a poster-child for modern feminism. Her 2014 work, We Should All Be Feminists, is a book-length essay which serves as a treatise and investigation in to what feminism should be and is in the 21st century. This book was so iconic that in 2016, designer Maria Grazia Chiuri—the first female creative director in the 70-year history of the fashion house Dior— featured a T-shirt bearing the statement, "We Should All Be Feminists", during her premier show.
4/7 On Art: The Diary of Frida Kahlo: An Intimate Self-Portrait
Frida Kahlo is an artist that has become, despite her leftist sentiments, a beaming icon. Her art and self-portraits find themselves in many mass-marketed products like illustrations, pillowcases, books, and whatnot. Her drawings have become synonymous to surrealism, however, critics note that these may be easily seen as realism due to her insistence that her works portray exactly how she sees the world around her. This journal might be a good book to peruse to touch base with the artist's own truth and ideology. It provides insight to her political sensibilities and struggles with facing thirty-five corrective operations. It is a work of discovering the self and how it can be moulded by society and history.
5/7 Notes on Business: In the Company of Women: Inspiration and Advice from over 100 Makers, Artists, and Entrepreneurs
This New York Times Bestseller collates insights from over 100 exceptional women on how they overcome adversity in the workplace and the world of entrepreneurship. These women share their experiences and advise on how to pursue one's dreams and what it takes to tackle gender bias. From all walks of life — the arts, big business, architecture, entertainment, and much more — this book will serve as an inspiring read that you can come back to every now and again when searching for encouragement about women's roles in today's bustling society.
6/7 Something Funny: Men Explain Things To Me by Rebecca Solnit
The beauty of reading works written by women is that one gets a new perspective of what truth and history can be. In this witty collection of essays, well-renowned American author Rebecca Solnit, takes on misconceptions between men and women and how men may wrongly assume things about women. Although it can be a hilarious read, Solnit's personal stories of awful encounters with prejudice and misogyny remind us of the need for more women to speak up and be heard.
7/7 Something thrilling: Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot has inspired many a character in both TV and film. The renegade sleuth finds himself in his most iconic role yet in this mystery read. A murder occurs during a long train journey and it is up to Poirot to discover who among the seemingly innocent passengers is the killer. Every page is filled to the brim with intrigue made iconic by sophisticated language that Christie fans have loved across the years. If you're a film buff, give the star-studded 2017 film adaptation a watch to compare to this thrilling read.
For more books to read, see also: 5 Local Books To Revisit For Pride Month, Tatler's Reading List 2019 & 2018, and Boozy Bookworm: 5 Thrilling Reads And Drinks To Pair Them With.