When hundreds gathered in 1970 for the UK's first women's liberation conference, a movement that had been gathering strength for years burst into a frenzy of radical action that would transform the way we think, act and live. In the 40 years since then, the feminist movement has won triumphs and endured trials, but it has never weakened its resolve, nor for a moment been dull. The Guardian has followed feminism's progress throughout, carrying interviews with and articles by its major figures, chronicling the arguments surrounding issues such as pornography, prostitution, political representation, pay and abortion rights, to name but a few. These are articles that, in essence, ask two fundamental questions: Who are we? Who should we be?
This collection brings together for the first time the very best of feminist writing in the Guardian. It includes the newspaper's pioneering women's editor, Mary Stott, writing about Margaret Thatcher, Beatrix Campbell on Princess Diana, Suzanne Moore interviewing Camilla Paglia, and Maya Jaggi interviewing Oprah Winfrey. There's also Jill Tweedie on why feminists need to be vocal and angry, Polly Toynbee on violence against women, Hannah Pool on black women and political power, and Andrea Dworkin writing with incendiary energy about the Bill Clinton sex scandal.
Lively, witty and full of verve, this is the essential guide to the feminist thinking and writing of the past 40 years the ultimate portrait of an ongoing revolution.
About this author
Kira Cochrane is the former women's editor for the Guardian and a frequent contributor to articles on women's issues.