It’s been a gutting few weeks (more accurately few years) for progressive-leaning women in the United States. The recent confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, a man accused of sexual assault akin to the President who appointed him, has resulted in an unprecedented outpouring of trauma and rage. Women are angry. Women are seething. Yet women’s rage isn’t contained to the prevalence of sexual violence. We’re are mad about racism, gun violence, inequality, the pay gap, you name it. In her new book, Good and Mad: The Revolutionary Power of Women’s Anger, Rebecca Traister, arguably one of the most important feminist voices of our time, acknowledges this anger and examines it as a political tool. One that, when channelled into activism, has the power to change political systems and institutions.
As she does in explosive writing for New York Magazine, The Cut, and best-selling non-fiction book All the Single Ladies, Traister exposes the patriarchal structures that have sought, and still seek, to curb and marginalize women’s voices. Her research brings to light the stories of women who have changed the course of history, fuelled by the anger of injustice. “I wanted to offer that context as a tool to help women think more about the anger that they feel, that they may swallow, that they may stuff down, that they feel ashamed about or feel that it makes them irrational in some way,” said Traister in New York, speaking to Future Women a few days before her book launch. “It’s also to help certain kinds of women who have not previously expressed that anger or thought about it in those ways, to understand they’re not the first to be there.” Here is an edited version of our conversation ranging from the necessity of giving credit to the women who have come before us, what proximity to patriarchal privilege means, and more.
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