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Nasty Women: Feminism, Resistance, and Revolution in Trump's America    by Samhita Mukhopadhyay & Kate Harding Amazon.com order for
Nasty Women
by Samhita Mukhopadhyay
Order:  USA  Can
Picador, 2017 (2017)
Softcover, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Carrol Wolverton

This book hit a nerve. These essay writers represent a cross-section of totally ticked-off women crushed by the election of the current US administration. They vent and vent without holding back. How could such a misogynistic loudmouth bully EVER be elected president of the world's greatest democracy?

The reader gets visceral, gut spilling reactions from minority women, gay women, trans-gender women, dedicated feminists, and more. Particularly gripping is the reaction of the disabled lady crushed by the president's treatment of a Pulitzer-prize winning disabled reporter. The American Indian writer isn't forgiving anybody.

They conclude that the United States remains violently racist, women haters, deferring to men who are seen as financially and politically superior. Confident, outspoken women are a threat to the dominant order. What is valued in a man is demonized in a woman. It's not crazy behavior if it works for him, and it did.

One author subtitled her essay 'The 1950's Called ...' Katha Pollitt is on to something here. I grew up in the 50's and matured in the 60's. My mother didn't work; my father worked two jobs. My mother didn't drive. Her only real job was sewing parachutes during World War II, after which she was sent home so a man could take over her knitting machine. Even in the 60's I was told by a personnel guy that I would not be hired because I would just get married, pregnant, and leave. In the late 60's I was forced to leave a good paying federal job at seven months, never to return. Maternity leave wasn't even an option. Bye.

The majority of white women in our most recent election voted for Trump. They want the old order back and made a big difference in electing Trump. They want back the factory jobs once held by the middle class male. The rust belt states were critical to this election. My dad's old factory is long gone, as are most of my husband's former employers. They are not coming back ever. Even in my present struggling middle-class neighborhood, many households house three generations, including grandchildren. A seventy-year-old neighbor struggles to keep his job despite health issues so he can support his tribe. Why aren't the two sons working? They are; they're just not making enough money to support themselves and a family. Trump's pledge to make America great again resonated. These voters don't care about a woman president. They want the 50's and 60's back. Sorry folk, it's gone.

Despite the laments of these authors, our American society has changed greatly. Our daughter has a responsible banking position making at least twice my highest-ever salary and was once awarded an equity scholarship for majoring in finance. Her boss is female and even higher waged. This would have never happened in my working generation. Granted, there remains gross discrimination, resentment, and clinging to the old order. Voting in a card-carrying old white bully with a trophy wife won't bring it back. It may slow progress for a while, but there is no going back. Americans must adjust to reality as it is. Our authors can take heart in this progress and keep up the good work.

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