So I’m doing a little online book club right now.  We’re reading a book called “Feminism is Not the Story of my Life” by Elizabeth Fox-Genovese.  I’ll admit, normally this is not a book I’d pick up as I generally have problems with this whole “anti-feminism” movement that Mrs. F-G is associated with, I mean how can you be truly anti-something and still take advantage of the opportunities it gives you.  I initially feared I’d be reading a book that could be used to bolster statements like “Feminism was established so as to allow unattractive women easier access to the mainstream of society.”– Rush Limbaugh or other conservative lines of thinking that blame any type of working/educated woman on the “downfalls of society”.

However, for the sake of expanding my horizons (knowing what you believe means knowing what you do not believe) I’m reading the book – even if that means I occasionally I want to throw it out the window.

Anyways every Monday we’ll be posting our views on that weeks chapter and I’ll be posting my reviews on this site as well with any extra info to help you understand what I’ve read.  My hope is that by the end of this book in the club I will be able to write a post that will sum up what my experiences of feminism are and what I hope it will be.

This week was just on our initial takes on the prologue.  This prologue was pretty basic and Mrs. F-G discussed the basics of why she felt she had to write this book and how she went about it.  However even reading prologue made me a little uneasy, something was off and she was already making a lot of statements about feminism and her experiences with that I didn’t share in any way.  So I had to do a little research on the book and it turns out that not only was Mrs. F-G born about 40 years before me, the book was published almost 15 years ago.  She was writing about a type of feminism occurring before I was born  and her research was done when I was learning basic math.  She wasn’t writing to my generation and she definitely wasn’t writing with my generations (gen. Y) experiences in mind, no wonder something seemed off!

So as I started to really read this book I do so with the realization that she’s not really talking to a 20 something in the year 2010; honestly this book would probably strike more cords with my mother and other older aquaintances.

Below is the brief post I wrote for the “Ladies Who Blog Book Club” Post.

I found it interesting reading some of what she says so far from the viewpoint of a few generations under her and am reminding myself that she is writing this from HER generations view and experience with Feminism which (IMHO) is different than my generations view on Feminism.

If I can make a generalization I feel that Generation Y’s view on Feminism is a little more mellow and encompassing than her’s (Mrs. F-G was born in 1941, not techincally a baby boomer, but a part of the Silent Generation) which seemed to be marked with the development of more of the radical stances of feminism. Because of this as I’ve started reading Chp 1 I already find myself saying, “No that’s not how it is for me and my age range.” and “That’s not how we all think of x,y and z” so I wonder if this book is actually applicable toward people in their 20’s/early 30’s in 2010 (info: the book was originally copyrighted in 1996, 14 years ago).

Mrs. F-G would have been dealing with the rise of 2nd wave feminism as a teenager and young adult, right in the prime (and perhaps most persuasive time) of her life and I wonder if she doesn’t look back on her old Feminist opinions the way some of us look back on some stupid decisions made in college. And by the time 3rd wave feminism “hit” she was approaching her 50’s.

I honestly found myself wondering if Mrs. F-G’s book would make more sense to my mother rather than me.

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Generation Info.
A Generation in the USA as of 2007 is typically around 25 years.
Generation Y – mid to late 1970’s to late 90’s early 00’s
Generation X – about 1961- 1981
Baby Boomer Generartion – Post WWII to 1960
Silent Generation – 1925-1045

Feminist Movements
1st Wave 19th Century and Early 20th Century
2nd Wave – 1960 & 70’s
3rd Wave – 1990 – ?
4th Wave – Happening Now?

Originally I assumed this book had been published no later than the turn of the new century, and because of that her original statments just seemed a little off from what I’ve experience but keeping in mind that she’s not actually writing to me (as I was 13 when the book first came out), but rather to a group of women almost 15 years ago (with the stated opinions gathered closer to 20 years ago), I find myself able to step back from some of her definitions and assumptions as they were not made for my generation and I think I’ll be able to approach this as more of a criticism of 2nd and 3rd wave feminism rather than what I believe the “4th wave” is shaping up to be.

With this information does Mrs. F-G’s book make a little bit more sense to anyone else?
And what generation are you a part of?

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