Caitlin Moran's playful feminist manifesto How To Be A Woman
Dubbed "the British Tina Fey" and "a feminist heroine for our times," columnist and author Caitlin Moran has a bestseller on her hands with her new book How To Be A Woman.
Part memoir, part rant and part feminist manifesto, the book of essays draws on Moran's working-class roots and unconventional youth to explore a host of topics that many people find difficult to discuss. The book tackles everything from menstruation and pregnancy to masturbation and pornography to everyday sexism and pop icons like the Spice Girls and Lady Gaga.
Moran's intelligence, self-deprecating wit and refreshingly frank and fearless approach have touched a chord in her native Britain and now, in North America.
"[Feminism's] a word that's sadly been hijacked. People think it just means an angry lady who hates all men and dresses very badly and probably hasn’t had sex for awhile. Whereas of course feminism is a very simple and straightforward thing: it just simply means being equal to boys. That's such a lovely and beautiful and revolutionary idea," she told Terry O'Reilly, guest host of CBC's cultural affairs show Q.
"As an old hag of 37, I became very sad when I met people from the younger generation — whose knees have not yet gone and who have beautiful, dewy skin — who say 'I'm not a feminist.' You just go 'What do you mean? You don't want to be equal to boys?' And they go 'Oh yeah, is that what it means?'"
Feminism can take millions of forms, she added during her interview from London. "There's no right way to be a feminist," Moran said.
"Everyone's unconsciously thought that once we've made the perfect feminist that we can all point at her and go 'Now every other woman in the world be like that,'" she said waggishly.
"Feminists can drive pink cars. Feminists can be stay-at-home moms. Feminists can wear high-heeled shoes. You can do whatever you want as long as you believe you're equal to men and, you know, you’re not being horrible to other people."
Moran talked to O'Reilly about her feelings about making feminism "cool," being delighted with the news that boys have been downloading her book and why she thinks the Spice Girls killed feminism.