From Publishers Weekly
The satirical cartoon cover of O'Beirne's book-not to mention the title-is an accurate reflection of the content within: O'Beirne, Washington editor of National Review magazine and a former vice president of the Heritage Foundation, has jumped on the bandwagon of highly politicized books (from both ends of the spectrum) leveling an all-out attack on the American feminist movement. O'Beirne tackles a wide range of issues, from childcare to sports to women in the military, claiming: "Only the French looked to a teenage girl to lead them into battle." She has a tendency to link strong arguments (children born into single-family homes are more likely to live in poverty) with her nebulous central thesis-feminists are responsible for the world's ills-without providing sufficient evidence to reinforce these claims. But are feminists really chiefly responsible for the demise of the American family? O'Beirne does bring up some worthy points, such as the fact that women's salaries are essentially equal to men's when accounting for time/job experience lost while raising children, but she tarnishes even her fact-based arguments with slavish adherence to the book's central focus: smearing powerful, left-wing women. The clever chapter titles and argumentative, lively writing style make this book, even for those not inclined to agree with O'Beirne's politics, readable, but O'Beirne's primary readership will undoubtedly enjoy her rousing take on gender politics.
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O'Beirne, an editor with National Review
and a former panelist on CNN's Capital
Gang, takes the feminist movement to task, charging it with responsibility for assorted social ills from broken families to increased risk to the military with female recruits. She cites some of America's best-known feminists, including Hillary Clinton, Gloria Steinem, Maureen Dowd, Kate Michelman, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Despite defeat of the ERA, these women, and the feminist movement in general, have managed to influence American culture to the detriment of women. Lamenting the "totalitarian" methods of the modern women's movement, O'Beirne maintains that advancements for women should not be credited to the women's movement but to intrepid women--including Catholic school nuns--who were hard at work breaking down barriers without celebration or official causes behind them. O'Beirne catalogs all the ways that feminism has weakened families, coarsened culture, and burdened the government. Readers interested in different perspectives on women's issues will appreciate O'Beirne's strongly held viewpoint. Vanessa BushCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved