“Women and Power” Review

By Kathryn Hutchinson

Mary Beard is a 66 year old author and professor at The University of Cambridge. On November 17, 2017 she published a nonfiction book called “Women and Power”. The book is 91 pages long and goes in-depth regarding the reality of women throughout history. 

She begins all the way back in the days of Ancient Greece, recounting mythical figures such as Medusa. Medusa falls in love and sleeps with Poseidon after swearing to be celibate before Athena. Athena gets mad, prompting her to turn her into the serpent with snakes that turn people to stone. Beard dedicates an entire chapter discussing the misogyny of this story and the depiction of women being pitted against women. Keeping with the topic of Greek myths, Homer’s Penelope from The Odyssey is a prime example of how history depicts women. 

After describing the frail, gentle nature of women in literature and art considered “historical masterpieces”, she begins to describe the power struggle between women and male dominated fields, describing the lack of female representation of women within politics, most notably the 2016 election and the disrespect towards Democratic candidate Hilary Clinton because she was a woman.

“Women and Power” is a must read for students, adults, and anybody that cares about the progression of equality and equity within this country and the world. Understanding the past and pushing education on this topic can push us further into the future instead of repeating the past. The book can be found in most bookstores including but not limited to Amazon and Barnes and Noble. 

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