Good and Mad: The Revolutionary Power of Women's Anger by Rebecca Traister
From Rebecca Traister, the New York Times bestselling author of All the Single Ladies—whom Anne Lamott called “the most brilliant voice on feminism in this country”—comes a vital, incisive exploration into the transformative power of female anger and its ability to transcend into a political movement.
In the year 2018, it seems as if women’s anger has suddenly erupted into the public conversation. But long before Pantsuit Nation, before the Women’s March, and before the #MeToo movement, women’s anger was not only politically catalytic—but politically problematic. The story of female fury and its cultural significance demonstrates the long history of bitter resentment that has enshrouded women’s slow rise to political power in America, as well as the ways that anger is received when it comes from women as opposed to when it comes from men.
With eloquence and fervor, Rebecca tracks the history of female anger as political fuel—from suffragettes marching on the White House to office workers vacating their buildings after Clarence Thomas was confirmed to the Supreme Court. Here Traister explores women’s anger at both men and other women; anger between ideological allies and foes; the varied ways anger is perceived based on its owner; as well as the history of caricaturing and delegitimizing female anger; and the way women’s collective fury has become transformative political fuel—as is most certainly occurring today. She deconstructs society’s (and the media’s) condemnation of female emotion (notably, rage) and the impact of their resulting repercussions.
Highlighting a double standard perpetuated against women by all sexes, and its disastrous, stultifying effect, Traister’s latest is timely and crucial. It offers a glimpse into the galvanizing force of women’s collective anger, which, when harnessed, can change history.
“Urgent, enlightened… well timed for this moment even as they transcend it, the kind of accounts often reviewed and discussed by women but that should certainly be read by men…realistic and compelling…Traister eloquently highlights the challenge of blaming not just forces and systems, but individuals.”—WASHINGTON POST
"A resounding polemic against political, cultural, and personal injustices in America...With articulate vitriol backed by in-depth research, Traister validates American women's anger.... Traister has meticulously culled smart, timely, surprising quotations from women as well as men. The combined strength of these many individual voices and stories gives the book tremendous gravity.... A gripping call to action that portends greater liberty and justness for all.”—KIRKUS REVIEWS (STARRED REVIEW)
“A trenchant analysis… Traister argues forcefully that women are an ‘oppressed majority in the United States,’ kept subjugated partly by racial divisions among the group. Traister closes with a reminder to women not to lose sight of their anger—even when things improve slightly and ‘the urgency will fade... if you yourself are not experiencing’ injustice or look away from it.”—PUBLISHERS WEEKLY (STARRED REVIEW)
"Timely and absorbing, Traister's fiery tome is bound to attract attention and discussion. Traister takes a deep dive into the current political climate to explore the contemporary and historical relationship women have with anger and the ramifications of expressing and suppressing feminine rage. Traister uses…startlingly obvious double standard[s] to explore how attaching negative connotations to women's anger has always been used to silence and dismiss them."—BOOKLIST (STARRED REVIEW)
“Good and Mad is Rebecca Traister's ode to women's rage—an extensively researched history and analysis of its political power. It is a thoughtful, granular examination: Traister considers how perception (and tolerance) of women's anger shifts based on which women hold it (*cough* white women *cough*) and who they direct it toward; she points to the ways in which women are shamed for or gaslit out of their righteous emotion. And she proves, vigorously, why it's so important for women to own and harness their rage—how any successful revolution depends on it.”—BUZZFEED
"Women are angry, and Rebecca Traister is just the person to chart the topography of their rage, its causes, and its effects.”—ELLE
"With Traister’s incisive prose and a topic that couldn’t be more timely, this book is sure to be a fiery read.”—HUFFINGTON POST
"Traister's reported manifesto on feminism after Trump...offers a forceful...inventory of the ways in which women’s anger in the public sphere is exaggerated, pathologized, and used to discredit them in a manner unimaginable for men."—BOOKFORUM