Gloria Steinem: TOP TEN BOOKS


Courtesy of Gloria Steinem

Gloria Steinem, the preeminent voice of the feminist movement in the 1960s and ’70s, continues to maintain her place among the modern movement. Her continuing advocacy has led to inspiring conversations with a new generation of activists, passing the torch to figures such as Lena Dunham while maintaining her stride; Steinem recently published My Life on the Road about her lifetime blazing the feminist trail, her first book in over 20 years. Her accomplishments are too numerous to name, suffice to say she’s founded many pioneering women’s rights alliances and organizations. Ms. Steinem is also the co-founder of Ms. magazine, first published in 1972. Says Steinem of her One Grand book list, “If I were marooned on a desert island, I would want a book on edible plants and building a raft, but here are ten I would choose for the pleasure of big and new understandings.”

Below are Gloria Steinem’s favorite books, available to purchase as a set or individually.


The Mermaid and the Minotaur

Dorothy Dinnerstein
In a migratory past when both men and women raised children, men developed empathy, patience, attention to detail, and a sense of the value of life; all qualities now wrongly called “feminine.” Dinnerstein will convince you that men again raising children is the key to world peace.
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Exterminate All the Brutes

Sven Lindquist
By traveling in Africa while also learning from hundreds of books stored in his computer, Lindquist shows us that racism was invented to justify colonialism. Racism came home to Europe as the holocaust.
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Two Thousand Seasons

Ayi Kwei Armah
In the communal voice of a storyteller, this great Ghanaian novelist describes Africa before Arab and European invasions and slave-taking. He not only redefines history, but how history is told

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The Sacred Hoop

Paula Gunn Allen
By describing the Americas before Columbus and what is still the biggest genocide in history, she tells us that “the root of oppression is the loss of memory.” Otherwise, we would know that most of what we want in the future was once here.
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Trauma and Recovery

Judith Herman
From shell shock in World War I to childhood sexual abuse today, the reality of trauma has been denied. But as this indispensable book makes clear, “Remembering and telling the truth about terrible events are prerequisites both for the restoration of the social order and for the healing of individual victims.”
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At the Dark End of the Street

Danielle McGuire
For a decade before Rosa Parks began the Montgomery bus boycott, she had been protesting the rapes at bus stops of black women by white men. This book helps make the female half of the civil rights movement visible.
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The Color Purple

Alice Walker
Because she makes the invisible visible, and redeems people who seem irredeemable, she makes every reader feel visible and redeemable, too.
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Sex and World Peace

Valerie Hudson et al
All the many forms of violence against females have now added up to fewer females on earth than males. Since violence against females is the normalizer of all other forms of violence, this book is vital, from family life to foreign policy.
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The Woman Warrior

Maxine Hong Kingston
If a Chinese girl living in the back of a laundry in San Francisco can imagine herself as a woman warrior riding down from the hills of China to rescue her people, I can imagine myself off this island.
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Dark Matter

Robin Morgan
Though I plan to stay off desert islands, and live to be 100, this soon-to-be published book of poetry contains my favorite lines: "….It’s sweetness/ that turns leaving sour, joy that makes dying hard.” Please note this title is not yet published and will not be included with the purchase of Ms. Steinem's list.
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