What does it mean to be a woman in American culture? More importantly, what does it mean to be an "acceptable" woman in American culture? During the 2016 election, we all watched Hillary Clinton get gutted by the media for all of the ways she failed to live up to the standards of femininity: she was too shrill, too cold, too ambitious, too bitchy, too unlikeable. It didn't matter that Clinton was more experienced, educated, and qualified than her opponent and now-president of the United States. What mattered was that she was just too much for some people, which is exactly why every nasty woman needs to read Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud. A brilliant and timely examination of the combatting contradictions of modern womanhood and those who refuse to bend to them, this thought-provoking and empowering book will make you proud to be an unruly woman, too.
In Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud, BuzzFeed culture writer Anne Helen Petersen examines eleven different female celebrities and the many ways in which they “question, interrogate or otherwise challenge the status quo.” Drawing from her own reporting, additional interviews, and thorough research, Petersen creates rich and complex profiles of trailblazing women celebrities, including Hillary Clinton, Serena Williams, Lena Dunham, Melissa McCarthy, and more, who are not only challenging the stereotypes around acceptable femininity, but changing them for the masses.
Highlighting the many ways these celebrities are deemed "too much" — Nicki Minaj is too slutty, while Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer are too gross, and Caitlyn Jenner is too queer— Petersen's sharp analysis is one of not just the defiant women themselves, but the society who berates, abuses, rejects, and tries to destroy them. As she puts it, Hillary Clinton's November loss is a "startling rejection: not just of Clinton, but of the very notion of unruly women in general." Female celebrities aren't under attack, women everywhere are, and thanks to Petersen's groundbreaking collection, readers have an engaging and accessible way to examine, and ultimately try and solve, these centuries-long issues.
At once a sharp cultural criticism, a celebration of boundary-pushing women, and a call to action for feminists everywhere, Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud is filled with wit, humor, insight, and admiration for unruly women all over the world.
Every nasty woman should add it to her TBR list, and here's why: