Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women's Angerby Published 11 Sep 2018
|Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women's Anger.pdf|
A transformative book urging twenty-first century-women to embrace their anger and harness it as a tool for lasting personal and societal change.
Women are angry, and it isn’t hard to figure out why.
We are underpaid and overworked. Too sensitive, or not sensitive enough. Too dowdy or too made-up. Too big or too thin. Sluts or prudes. We are harassed, told we are asking for it, and asked if it would kill us to smile. Yes, yes it would.
Contrary to the rhetoric of popular “self-help” and an entire lifetime of being told otherwise, our rage is one of the most important resources we have, our sharpest tool against both personal and political oppression. We’ve been told for so long to bottle up our anger, letting it corrode our bodies and minds in ways we don’t even realize. Yet our anger is a vital instrument, our radar for injustice and a catalyst for change. On the flip side, the societal and cultural belittlement of our anger is a cunning way of limiting and controlling our power.
We are so often told to resist our rage or punished for justifiably expressing it, yet how many remarkable achievements in this world would never have gotten off the ground without the kernel of anger that fueled them? Rage Becomes Her makes the case that anger is not what gets in our way, it is our way, sparking a new understanding of one of our core emotions that will give women a liberating sense of why their anger matters and connect them to an entire universe of women no longer interested in making nice at all costs.
Following in the footsteps of classic feminist manifestos like The Feminine Mystique and Our Bodies, Ourselves, Rage Becomes Her is an eye-opening book for the twenty-first century woman: an engaging, accessible credo offering us the tools to re-understand our anger and harness its power to create lasting positive change.
"Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women's Anger" Reviews
I have been following Soraya's writing for many years, so I expected this book to be amazing—but it surpassed my wildest expectations. Rage Becomes Her will make you cry—and make you angry—but it will also leave you hopeful and filled with the energy necessary to create change. Astoundingly Good!
Rage Becomes Her is at once the worst and best book to have started in the midst of the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation. I was already enraged and this book has so much more to make me angry, but it also puts it into context. Of course, the best thing Soraya Chemaly does with Rage Becomes Her is encouraging us to see our anger as healthy.
Chemaly begins by reclaiming anger. Women are supposed to be sad, not angry. We are not supposed to have the power of anger. Anger is a demand, sorrow is acceptance. Then she spends several chapters reminding us why we should be angry, from pay differentials, the women tax, sexual assault, health care inequities, and the flat-out misogyny that impinges so much on our lives. I would read a bit and then have to get up and chop onions VERY HARD or take a short walk just to walk off some of the anger so I could read some more.
It’s not that I didn’t know a lot of this, but concentrating it is an intense experience. However, Chemaly does us the service of ending with a chapter on turning our anger into more than a fiery furnace so that it is instead, the optimistic demand for justice that righteous anger can be.
It took me far longer than usual to read Rage Becomes Her. This is not because this is not a good book, it’s because it is so very intense. Seriously, if you could measure injustice per column-inch, this book is near the saturation point. In spite of bringing all the scholarly receipts, Rage Becomes Her is a very readable narrative. Chemaly brings herself and her family into the narrative, telling of seeing her mother’s evident, but unexpressed rage and finding herself falling into the trap of perpetuating the ‘good girl” socialization with her own daughter who was being bullied. This kind of honest self-reflection reifies many of the broader themes.
This is not a happy book and it will make you angry, but you should read it anyway. We really need to see the bigger picture. We really do need our anger and we need to employ that anger to make the world less unfair and better for women, not just for us, but for the next generations.
I received a copy of Rage Becomes Her from the publisher through NetGalley.
Rage Becomes Her from Atria Books
Soraya Chemaly at Women’s Media Center
This is a Goodreads win review. This is not my favorite topic. I in general do not like rage and anger. However if a woman can grow and express these feelings correctly and move forward in a good way than I can see the point. But I have seen some people who stay angry forever about one thing or another and they seem to be miserable.
Can you read about a book about rage without becoming angry? I certainly could not. Chemaly brings up many relatable experiences and topics: the role of women as selfless caretakers, fear of being publically harassed and shamed, women in politics, benevolent sexism, the #MeToo movement, Hollywood, and general injustices against women.
Clearly, the main topic revolves around anger. Women are taught to suppress their anger because to express it would be unladylike and against gender norms. Instead of sticking to this unhealthy social norm, Soraya Chemaly encourages women to understand and use their anger, not in the name of vengeance, but as a way to create positive change in the world. This involves having uncomfortable conversations, asserting oneself, and getting involved, such as joining a protest or starting a petition.
Overall, this was a great feminist read that encourages women to express themselves and strive for social change. She does not encourage blind rage or revenge, but encourages women to express and channel their rage in a healthy way, rather than allowing the anger to bubble up inside, which can negatively impact anyone. The book is intersectional and well researched. There were some sections that I found to be a bit dry, but I also found other sections to be completely absorbing. I would definitely recommend.
One of the most powerful books I've read this year, Rage Becomes Her gives voice to the causes, expressions, and possibilities of female rage. I will do a full video review on my YouTube channel Beautifully Bookish Bethany, but I cannot recommend this book enough. It says the things that have long needed saying. It also strikes the perfect note between anecdotes and hard research, making it very readable. This will make you reconsider everything.