Women Without Superstition : No Gods - No Masters 1st Edition

15 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1877733093
ISBN-10: 1877733091
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Editorial Reviews

Review

". . . a valuable resource for both feminists and atheists and it provides interesting reading for people without a cause who would just like to learn more about some of American history's most interesting citizens." -- Rev. William R. Wineke, Wisconsin State Journal, April 13, 1997

"A spirited and inspiring book. . . . the book made me think--hard--about why I support an institution that has, historically, such an atrocious record of abuses against women. . . . In sparkling displays of logic, freethinking women snip patriarchal theology into ribbons. . . . The lives of these women are absolutely exhilarating, and Gaylor's pungent biographical sketches are a delight to read. . . . an unusually accessible volume." -- Joan Hedrick, The Women's Review of Books, November 1997

"A superb collection of original writings . . . tells the story of how female heretics, agnostics, and atheists influenced the women's movement. It is particularly valuable to history buffs and women activists. The writings are provocative, timely, and give the eloquent views of women--past and present--who were social reformers as well as revolutionaries." -- Annette Van Howe, The Humanist, July/August 1997

"This anthology of 51 feminists, from Mary Wollstonecraft to Katha Pollitt and Barbara Ehrenreich, shows how the leaders of the women's-liberation movement have long understood the crucial importance of breaking with the Bible. . . . Gaylor's selections of original writings are well chosen, and her introduction is convincingly argued. I found her brief biographical sketches fascinating." -- Matthew Rothschild, The Progressive, January 1998

"This anthology, billed as the first of its kind, certainly provides food for thought." -- Judyth Rigler, San Antonio Express News, March 23, 1997

From the Publisher

The first anthology of its kind.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 680 pages
  • Publisher: Freedom from Religion Fndtn; 1st edition (January 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1877733091
  • ISBN-13: 978-1877733093
  • Product Dimensions: 2.2 x 6.8 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #445,549 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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42 of 44 people found the following review helpful By psmith@sol.racsa.co.cr on December 13, 1997
Format: Hardcover
"Women Without Superstition" is a compilation of short biographies with sample writings of some of the more well known mostly North American and English freethinking women. Beginning with Mary Wollstonecraft, and ending with Taslima Narsin, The editor A. L Gaylor does an admirable job connecting a large cast of women together including Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, Voltairine de Cleyre, Margaret Sanger, and Dora Russell and painting a vivid picture of the incredible struggle they endured simply trying to enfranchise women especially during the first two centuries of American independence. The fact that their struggle incorporated the rational position against slavery helps validates their underlying premises. Presented are beautiful thinkers mostly struggling alone. An understandable bias toward feminism is notable, perhaps explainable due to the repressive forces continually confronting these women freethinkers. These are stories about women and their struggle to promote women rights. Women working with women. A slight bias underlines some of the biographies written by the editor. The most glaring instance occurs in the biography of Margaret Sanger. Gaylor's description of her father as "better at stirring up controversy than providing for his family" cast her father in less than an admirable light and doesn't coincide with Sanger's remembrances. He had a difficult life offering his position to the community as well as the women freethinkers. The sub-title, "No Gods, No Masters", attributable to M. Sanger, accurately conveys the critical stance most of these women offer of religions, mostly judaeo-christianity. Repetition of critiques of biblical errancy, brutality, irrationality and chauvinism abound.Read more ›
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37 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Eric Fricker on May 2, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I wish I had been given the chance to study this stuff in school. I spent a long time struggling with these ideas. If only I had access to this book at an earlier age. Great book, wonderful works by highly intelligent authors. Helped me to cast off my old doubts.
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29 of 32 people found the following review helpful By S. Hayes on December 26, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I first checked this book out of the library. I wasn't sure about it as I have had to really wade through quite a few books recently and didn't want to buy something that would put me to sleep. But I hadn't finished the introduction yet, and I knew I would be buying it. It's a fascinating book, and way overdue to be published! I wish everybody, but especially every woman, could read this book! There are so many interesting things in here, and no matter how much you think you know about feminism, freethought, etc, there is something new for you in this book. I have recommended it over and over again to my friends.
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28 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Eugene Boggiatto on April 1, 2000
Format: Hardcover
A great collection of writing from woman of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Any woman who is enjoying todays freedom (still a way to go) should read this book and appreciate the efforts of these writers and to the ridicule, insults, threats etc. they weathered. As a man, I'm thankful to them.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 2, 1997
Format: Hardcover
Annie Laurie Gaylor's new book on Women Without Superstition is an outstanding contribution to Freethought literature. Most Freethought anthologies include selections from the famous male freethinkers of history, and except for a few outstanding individuals, female writers have been ignored. Ms. Gaylor corrects this imbalance with her new book. For each woman freethinker, she has written a short historical introduction that places each author in her time and culture. Simply as a historical resource, this book would be valuable. But the selections from each author that Annie Laurie includes are rich and rewarding. Imagine the courage and confidence each woman had to have to live a life based on reason, evidence, and honesty--and then speak openly about her heretical beliefs--in a disapproving society. Such courage is still required today, which makes this book inspiring reading.
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23 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Ted Huntington on March 5, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I enjoyed this book. Not only is the story of atheism (and antitheism) difficult to find info on, but the story of female humans in atheism and science is also difficult to find info in.
This is one of the only books I have found that tells the stories of women in atheism. I would enjoy seeing a video on atheism, and also female humans in atheism and science. I would enjoy seeing, hearing and reading stories of humans that spoke out against religion and promoted science.
Finding images of these female humans is also difficult to do. This book includes humans I had never heard of, but also any body that did any thing for female human equality. For example, I was very glad to see a photo and data on Matilda Joslyn Gage, a person usually left out of women's history because of her anger with religion, and perhaps because of her sexuality.
My one criticism of this book is that the people are kind of tame (although being atheist is shocking for most humans). Where are the female humans in science...? Still, for one of the only books (or videos for that matter) on free thinking women (or women without superstition and substition!) I was glad and enjoyed every story!
Stop Violence, Teach Science!
Ted Huntington
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23 of 28 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 20, 2000
Format: Hardcover
As I first read this book, I was constantly amazed at the insight and reasoning power of these women. I was also angry that I had never been exposed to these texts. The only thing that baffles me is that Ayn Rand is not mentioned more. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that she was a capitalist? I haven't found any evidence that the FFRF (the author's group) is philosophically socialist, which would explain her Rand's warranting only a footnote. Rand is surely one of the most famous atheist women of our day. Nevertheless, the book is an absolute treasure to anyone interested in enjoying life and my thanks go out to Ms. Gaylor for writing it.
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