How to Be a Woman by Caitlin Moran - review by Joan Smith

Joan Smith

Feminism Lite

How to Be a Woman


Ebury Press 313pp £11.99 order from our bookshop

Caitlin Moran sounds like a nice woman. She writes prolifically for The Times, where she reviews TV and chronicles the solipsistic world of celebrities in one of the paper’s most popular features. Now she has written a book that has been compared by her publisher to two historic events, the death of the suffragette Emily Davison under the hooves of the king’s horse in 1913 and feminists protesting against Miss World in 1970. The blurb continues: ‘NOW Caitlin Moran rewrites The Female Eunuch from a bar stool and demands to know why pants are getting smaller.’

Here are many of the anxieties of contemporary publishing exposed in a single sentence: the craving for a link with past success; the recourse to the breathless language of popular journalism; the reassurance that readers won’t be troubled with anything too weighty. It’s a pretty fair summary of

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