HomeGroupsTalkMoreZeitgeist
Search Site
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Loading...

The Female Man

by Joanna Russ

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
1,834466,777 (3.48)1 / 129
Living in an altered past that never saw the end of the Great Depression, Jeannine, a librarian, is waiting to be married. Joanna lives in a different version of reality- she's a 1970s feminist trying to succeed in a man's world. Janet is from Whileaway, a utopian earth where only women exist. And Jael is a warrior with steel teeth and catlike retractable claws, from an earth with separate-and warring-female and male societies. When these four women meet, the results are startling, outrageous, and subversive.… (more)
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

» See also 129 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 46 (next | show all)
Thanks to technology that allows travel between different alternative realities, four versions of the same woman meet. One is from more or less our reality, one is from a reality in which WWII didn't happen because Hitler died, one is from a reality where males died out in a plague centuries ago, and one is from a reality where there is quite literally a war between the sexes.

It's an intriguing premise, but unfortunately the result is a mess. It's told in a mixture of third person and first person but the first person keeps changing with it frequently being totally unclear who the narrator is or which of the alternative realities we are in. ( )
2 vote Robertgreaves | Mar 27, 2021 |
Well, I have to admit that I am not understanding this book. Multiple characters hang out together, thinking about and discussing the role of woman, with some of them from this world and others from a world where women run everything. Sometimes we get a moment of conflict. Sometimes we get stream of consciousness. I hope others have better luck with this book. ( )
  WiebkeK | Jan 21, 2021 |
This book dragged me along with it kicking and screaming. I did not like it in the beginning or the middle or the end, I complained loudly the whole time I was reading it that it was a TERRIBLE and FRUSTRATING book and OH MY GOD WHY DOES IT HAVE TO BE WRITTEN IN SUCH A FRAGMENTED, CONFUSING MANNER.

But by the time I finished it I was feeling a sense of accomplishment, as well as a sense that it had all been worthwhile, like I'd just run a marathon.

The good: seldom has a book been written that is so necessary. I am surrounded in real life by people who think feminism is a movement for times gone by, that we live in a post-sexist world where the genders are truly equal and nobody is disenfranchised for differences as petty as that which is between our legs. I'd like to throw Janet Evason at their faces. And of course Joanna. My lovely, angry, hyperarticulate Joanna who is the ball-busting bitch I've always wished I could be.

The bad: seldom has a book been written that is so fucking confusing. The short passages alternate between the points of view of the three main characters and an unknown fourth character, often with no way to distinguish between them much less tell which passage belongs to whose eyes. This isn't even the kind of weird writing you get used to as you read along. I wish this book had been written a little more accessibly.

The ugly: it hasn't aged well, this book hasn't. I don't mean that it is too shrill, too feminist, too radical or whatever. I mean it isn't feminist ENOUGH: like the typical 2nd wave work it is, it seems to have blinkers on that restrict its feminism to white western middle-class able-bodied "normal-looking" women. If there is so much anger to be found in this narrow segment of women, imagine how much anger seethes in the breasts of the rest? Then again, every writer is a product of her times, and every book is a product of its. It would be very unfair to hold this book to the standards of four decades later. So this shortcoming is forgiven: I'm only mentioning it as a caveat emptor for current readers.

( )
  nandiniseshadri | Jul 12, 2020 |
Righteous feminist
or, miserable ramblings
of an ass woman. ( )
1 vote Eggpants | Jun 25, 2020 |
"Woman is the gateway to another world; Woman is the earth-mother; Woman is the eternal siren; Woman is purity; Woman is carnality; Woman has intuition; Woman is the life-force; Woman is selfless love.
'I am the gateway to another world," (said I, looking in the mirror) 'I am the earth-mother; I am the eternal siren; I am purity,' (Jeez, new pimples) 'I am carnality; I have intuition; I am the life-force; I am selfless love.' (Somehow it sounds different in the first person, doesn't it?)"

It's an experience, it's worth reading, many of the ideas of second wave feminism present are still relevant today. Having said that, it's not enjoyable. Some might say that it's challenging, I would suggest it's obfuscating. On purpose, sure, but this type of surrealism and purposeful obtuseness annoys me more than anything else. Good ideas are made better by a clear narrative structure in my opinion, but maybe I'm just blind to its genius.

"Does it count if you love men's bodies but hate men's minds? Does it count if you still love yourself?" ( )
1 vote systemfailure | Jun 16, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 46 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (18 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Joanna Russprimary authorall editionscalculated
Bontrup, HiltrudTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Clute, JudithCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Drews, KristiinaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Harman, DominicCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jones, GwynethIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vasilakis, AnastasiaCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Information from the German Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
This book is dedicated to Anne, to Mary and to the other one and three-quarters billions of us.
First words
I was born on a farm on Whileaway.
Quotations
“I didn’t and don’t want to be a ‘feminine’ version or a diluted version or a special version or a subsidiary version or an ancillary version, or an adapted version of the heroes I admire. I want to be the heroes themselves.”
As my mother once said: the boys throw stones at the frogs in jest.

But the frogs die in earnest.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

Living in an altered past that never saw the end of the Great Depression, Jeannine, a librarian, is waiting to be married. Joanna lives in a different version of reality- she's a 1970s feminist trying to succeed in a man's world. Janet is from Whileaway, a utopian earth where only women exist. And Jael is a warrior with steel teeth and catlike retractable claws, from an earth with separate-and warring-female and male societies. When these four women meet, the results are startling, outrageous, and subversive.

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Four women living in parallel worlds, each with a different gender landscape. When they begin to travel to each other's worlds each woman's preconceptions on gender and what it means to be a woman are challenged. Acclaimed as one of the essential works of science fiction and an influence on William Gibson, THE FEMALE MAN takes a look at gender roles in society and remains a work of great power.
Haiku summary

Quick Links

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.48)
0.5 2
1 23
1.5 2
2 30
2.5 9
3 66
3.5 24
4 90
4.5 11
5 62

Beacon Press

An edition of this book was published by Beacon Press.

» Publisher information page

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 157,804,212 books! | Top bar: Always visible