What Is Feminism?

What does the word ‘Feminism’ conjure up for you?

Burning bras?  Hairy armpits?  Argumentative, bitter women?

Feminism has a bad reputation.  Many women are afraid to use the word, or to admit they are a feminist, for fear of being pigeonholed.  But the truth is this: Feminism simply means that we as women want to be treated as individuals and allowed to fulfill whatever it is we wish for.  It’s about equal rights, but it’s also about working out what we want.

Every woman is different.  Being a feminist doesn’t mean you have to work when you have kids.  If you want to stay at home with them, don’t feel guilty about that either.  Feminism is about targeting what makes us happy and being allowed to pursue it.  And not criticizing other women for making different choices to us.

Of course, there are places in the world where this is still not the case (and we shouldn’t forget to look in our own backyards too).  Active feminism means fighting for a level playing field, where we can make our own decisions.  If anything is jeopardising those opportunities, we need to take a look at it.

Feminism in How To Be A Good Wife

In How To Be A Good Wife, Marta stays at home and while Kylan is there she finds it very fulfilling. But when he leaves, she is at a lose end. Who is Marta now that her role as wife and mother has been stripped away? And how can she rediscover herself?

Read more about Empty Nest Syndrome

These are the questions which How To Be A Good Wife raises. What do we want, and what happens when we get it? And what happens after? How do we find happiness and how do we keep it?

‘The book can be read both as a taut thriller and an allegory of the female experience in an unhappy marriage, the waning sense of self felt by the woman who attends to the needs of her family before her own.’
– Financial Times