Tuesday, January 1, 2013

The Good Girls Revolt

Title:  The Good Girls Revolt
Author:  Lynn Povich
Publication Information:  Perseus Book Group. 2012. 249 pages.

Book Source:  I read this book based on a recommendation by a friend. The book came as a hardcover edition from the library.

Favorite Quote:  "For most of us middle-class ladies, standing up for our rights marked the first time we had done anything political or feminist. It would be the radicalizing act that gave us the confidence and the courage to find ourselves and stake our claim."

The Good Girls Revolt is a memoir of a group of women - the first women in the media industry to initiate a class action suit against their employer for sex discrimination. The "good girls" are female employees of Newsweek magazine during the 1960s.

Lynn Povich considered herself lucky to have landed a job at Newsweek. For a young woman raised in the 1950s, a job at Newsweek, a reputable journal, was career making. However, over the years, the discrimination between equally qualified men and women became increasingly apparent. Things came to a head in 1970 when Newsweek's cover story was on women's movement and was titled "Women in Revolt." Forty-six female Newsweek employees timed their class action discrimination lawsuit to be filed that same week.

This book tells the story of these women, how they got to the point of filing the lawsuit, and what happened after. It is a fascinating piece of history and one that I was not familiar with before reading this book.

Unfortunately, I found the book very difficult to read. It moved between characters and back and forth over time very rapidly. I found myself getting lost - either having to re-read to follow the thread of the story or to skim facts that were less relevant to the main story line.

Equality and the fight for equality is an idea I whole-heartedly support. So, I am glad I learned about the story, but I just wish I had enjoyed the book more.

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