There is an old saying:
Well behaved women seldom make history.
When Hillary Clinton ran for President last year, it was history making. But Hillary was not the first woman to run for the highest office in the land.
In 2016, The Highest Glass Ceiling: Women’s Quest for the American Presidency hit book shelves. Written by Ellen Fitzpatrick, the book examines the lives and careers of three women who paved the way for Hillary Clinton’s nomination: Victoria Woodhull, Margaret Chase Smith and Shirley Chisholm.
Each woman’s personal and professional history is written about in great detail. All three women faced discrimination and prejudice in her quest for the Presidency. But despite the obstacles (and none of them actually makes it to the Oval Office), they still paved the way not just for Hillary Clinton, but for future generations of girls to step into the political arena.
Anyone who had read this blog regularly knows that I am a feminist. I truly believe in the ideals of the movement. But that doesn’t mean that every book on the movement’s past, present or possible future is the next Feminine Mystique. My problem with the book is that there are certain areas of the book (namely the entire chapter on Victoria Woodhull) that felt more like a boring college textbook than an inspiring non fiction work that gives its reader the nudge to make a difference in his or her world. I wanted to like it, because I would love to say the words “Madame President” at some point during my lifetime. But I didn’t.
Do I recommend it? I’m leaning toward no.
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