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100 Most Important Women of the 20th Century Hardcover – October, 1998


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Meredith Books; 1st edition (October 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0696208237
  • ISBN-13: 978-0696208232
  • Product Dimensions: 10.2 x 10 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,324,236 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

100 Most Important Women of the 20th Century is a gift book, with photographs and short essays on influential women around the world, ranging from writers and scientists to politicians and athletes, and from progressive figures like Oprah Winfrey and Eleanor Roosevelt to reactionaries like anti-feminist Phyllis Schafly and ruthless Madame Mao (Jiang Qing). Although the essays on even the most famous figures, such as Billie Jean King or Princess Diana, are well-written and interesting, the best thing about this book is that it calls to mind wonderful women whose names have lost their currency, among them Jane Addams, who cofounded Chicago's Hull House and was vitally involved in the formation of the ACLU, and Carrie Chapman Catt, who formed the League of Women Voters. The foreword by Barbara Walters, who has interviewed many of the women included, describes her own difficulties in establishing a career as a television journalist (even after she was allowed on the air, she was referred to as "the Today girl") and celebrates the new opportunities made possible by these leading women. --Regina Marler

More About the Author

Kevin Markey thinks "rain" and "out," when used together, are two of the saddest words in the English language. When speaking of weather, "snow" and "day" are much better! Other word combinations as compelling in their way as a bang-bang play on the bases include "greasy slider," "late-inning heroics," and "lasting friendships," concepts that all appear in this book... which he hopes will induce gales of laughter (another good one) in every reader.

Kevin is the author of SLUMPBUSTER, WALL BALL, and WING DING, all in his Super Sluggers series of baseball adventures, and several books of nonfiction. He lives in Northampton, Massachusetts, with his wife and two children and a lovable yellow-haired dog named Happy. He bats left, throws left, and types with both hands. You can visit him online at www.kevinmarkey.com.

Customer Reviews

2.7 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

30 of 39 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 24, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Usually I don't bother reviewing so-so books, but I have to ask: How could they include such women as Lady Di (oh, please), Jiang Qing, Eva Peron, Sonja Henie (Sonja who?), and what appaled me the most, Phyllis Schlafly, in the list? When I saw the book I though it would be about women who had helped to elevate our status and create better conditions for us all, but Schlafly appears here, and I quote "as the woman who helped shot down the Equals Right Amendment(....)" I was mad. Where are the truly deserving women, the ones that did try their best to leave the world a little better that when they found it? Where is Eileen Collins, Gabriela Mistral, Karen Horney, and why not, Audrey Hepburn (isn't she a way more reasonable choice than Jane Fonda?) I'll grant that they compiled a more or less good list of important women, but I'm glad I borrowed this book instead of buying it. I have better plans for my money.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Allyn on March 27, 2003
Format: Hardcover
After receiving this book as a birthday gift, I was initially delighted. The best thing about this book is certainly its "magazine-like" appeal. Its pages are glossy, the print is sharp, the layout is pleasantly modern, and best of all, the short, concise biographies of a widely diversified group of women are fascinating and effortlessly attention-grabbing. Indeed, this book is a godsend for people who ordinarily wouldn't want long, detailed historical books and biographies; "100 Most Important Women of the 20th Century" gives this type of person a glimpse of important history without boring them. And of course, needless to say, hardcore history buffs wouldn't want to be without this book...
However, upon closer examination and further reading, a fundamental flaw present in this volume becomes obivious. Put simply, somehow it seems that some women in this book are simply not worthy of being named "most important." Before I go any further, I think it necessary to say that I understand that it's impossible to satisfy everyone when creating a book like this, but I still feel that selections could have been better. For example, why is Mary Quant included? I know that the mini skirt created quite a stir in the fashion world, but fashion is only so important. Sonja Heine? Revolutionizing the sport of figure skating is can hardly be considered a fundamental accomplishment of the century, at least by my book. Dorothy Parker? Maybe I'm missing something here, but when reading this book, it appeared that she basically drank, smoked, and told witty jokes. Madonna? I won't even go there.
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Laura Fearins on November 27, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This book was good for learning a little about each person, however, I felt as though quite a few women were left out. I suppose that it is only 100 women, and they did have to include some from each area, but many in here didn't seem to have a significant impact. Many women who I feel had a significant impact weren't listed. I didn't feel as though each woman got equal coverage.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Susan Simpson on May 20, 2002
Format: Hardcover
The authors of this book had some interesting choices of women for their most important. That's fine, "most important" is a pretty subjective term anyways. What bothered me was the short shrift this book seemed to give many of these women. If you read the brief blurb on Eleanor Roosevelt, you'll come away thinking she was nice to black people. This book doesn't give you enough details to explain why these women are so extraordinary.
Still, the book introduces many women of the 20th century that readers would probably not have heard of before.
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19 of 29 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 20, 1999
Format: Hardcover
One must suppose that Barbara Walters is correct by stating in the forward on page 8, "Every woman alive today owes an immeasurable debt to the women in this book." Although after having read the book, there are some of the women to whom one, such as I, can not relate.
Some are these women one has read about; while others one has studied about in school. I think one is drawn to those women who have lived during one's lifetime or not too long before. Those who are not among my favorites are Gloria Steinem, Mary Quant, Martha Stewart, Jane Fonda, Madonna, and Helen Gurley Brown. Among those whom I admire the most are Mother Teresa; Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis; Diana, Princess of Wales; Eleanor Roosevelt; Betty Ford; Hillary Rodham Clinton; and Marilyn Monroe.
Hillary Clinton states on page 22, "Our global future depends on the willingness of every nation to invest in its people, especially women and children." Mother Teresa said, "Each of us is merely a small instrument; all of us, after accomplishing our mission, will disappear." -page 53. Eleanor Roosevelt is credited with the statement, "It is better to light a candle that to curse the darkness." - page 46
I highly recommend this book for everyone regardless of gender. Since I have subscribed to LADIES' HOME JOURNAL for many years, I have read about the more recent ladies. As a teenager, I can recall this magazine was always in my parents' home.
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