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25 Feminist Books Every Women Must Read

“Though she be but little, she is fierce”- William Shakespeare

Abhishek Biju Nair

4 months ago|8 min read

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‘Feminsim’ is one of those words that we are constantly exposed to in our society. Many of us still don’t know what does feminism means. It’s simple. It’s about being the woman that you are without fear of judgment. 

Feminism empowers women to achieve their goals. Being a feminist means believing in and standing up for women’s equality. 

Feminism means a lot to women all around the world. Even after all the struggles. Feminism remains an active topic in political debates and in the society we live in. While we have plenty of time sitting at home during this pandemic, let’s learn about feminism and the issues that women face internationally. 

Here’s a list of 25 Feminist books every woman must read that’ll guide you along the path of feminism and inspire you!

1. Jane Eyre

Must-Read Feminist Books

Written by Charlotte Bronte, this book was one of the first novels to represent the modern view of women in society. Jane Eyre is the story of Jane, an orphan girl who is trying to understand the world around her. The author gives you a unique and inspiring reading experience. A masterpiece of a story and a must-read!

2. To The Lighthouse

This novel written by Virginia Woolf talks about the issues in family life and the conflict between men and women. The heroine of the story challenges the traditional expectations of women during those days. It’s a great story and one that shouldn’t be missed!

3. Hood Feminism 

If you want to learn more about Feminism, this is the right book for you. Written by Mikki Kendall, this book has a lot of ideas and concepts that’ll help you learn about feminism and so many more issues. This book is a wake-up call and is a must-read!

4. Recollections of My Nonexistence 

A memoir of Rebecca Solnit that focuses on feminism and how her identity as a woman impacted her career as a writer. She also writes about violence against women. The book is about how she finds her voice in a society that prefers women to be silent. This is an amazing read and one that every woman should read. 

5. The Awakening 

Written by Kate Chopin, this book talks about how society treated women in the late 19th century and women’s struggles against the conformity of society and married life. The Awakening fights for women’s rights and is a milestone in feminist literature. Another must-read! 

6. The Colour Purple 

By American author Alice Walker, the novel tells the story of Celie, a black girl who is born into poverty. The book mainly focuses on the life of African-American women and their position in American social culture. 

The book is going to leave you disturbed knowing about the abuse and conditions women had to deal with. The Colour Purple is hopeful and beautiful. A must-read!

7. The Yellow Wallpaper

Written by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, this story is a feminist view about a woman’s life after marriage in a male dominant society during the late 19th century. It’s a well-written and incredible story. Highly recommended to anyone who thinks that depending on the spouse is all you need to be happy!

8. The Beauty Myth 

Written by Naomi Wolf, this book has contributed a lot to the feminist movement. Recommended to those who are interested in body image, appearance, and most importantly feminism. 

Naomi Wolf goes against how companies make women buy their products by making them feel insecure about their bodies. Overall a good read!

9. Wild 

One of the best memoirs that you’ll ever read. Written by Cheryl Strayed, the book is the story of a 26-year old girl, who makes an impulsive decision to go on a hike on her own, following a family tragedy. It’s well-written and inspiring. Wild is now a major motion picture too.  

10. Lilac Girls

Must-Read Feminist Books

This story is about three different women; each from three different countries: Poland, Germany, and America. Set during the years of World War II, this book by Martha Hall Kelly is mainly about the inhumanity and experiments the women at camps were forced to endure. 

Lilac Girl is extremely well-written and heart-wrenching!

11. Hidden Figures

Written by Margot Lee Shetterly, this book tells the incredible story of three African-American woman mathematicians who worked at NASA and overcame gender and race bias by being the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history during the civil rights movement. 

An inspiring story that every woman should read!

12. #Girlboss

Must-Read Feminist Books

If you’re in a mood to read some empowering stories about women, this is the right pick. Sophia Amoruso shares her story about how she went from a high-school dropout to the founder of Nasty Gal, one of the fastest-growing retailers in the world. Girlboss is an amazing book and is a must-read!

13. I am Malala

An autobiographical book by Malala Yousafzai. It tells about her extraordinary journey from Northern Pakistan to Oxford University. She also talks about the day when she was shot at point-black for fighting for her right to education. 

It’s an inspiring story and if you want to know more about Malala, then this book is highly recommended

14. My Life On The Road

Gloria Steinem, a feminist icon shares her experience of fighting for women’s rights with us. Gloria is a writer, activist, and one of the most inspiring leaders of the world. There are many inspiring stories in this book and is a must-read! 

15. The Moment of Lift 

This book is truly about women’s empowerment. Melinda Gates talks about her personal life and the initial struggles he faced with her marriage to Bill. The Moment of Life is inspirational, heart-breaking, and will leave you empowered! One of the best feminist books that every woman should read. 

16. Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body 

Written by Roxane Gay, this book tells about how being fat affected her life in so many negative ways and also about the rape she experienced when she was just twelve. Then she learns to be confident about her body. It’s a heartbreaking story, but inspirational. 

17. The Witch Doesn’t Burn In This One 

Written by Amanda Lovelace, ‘The Witch Doesn’t Burn In This One’ is a collection of poems the empowers women and also motivates them to take control of their minds and bodies. The narrative behind every poem is beautiful, raw, and honest. It’s so powerful and a must-read!

18. Little Woman

Must-Read Feminist Books

Written by American author Louisa May Alcott, this book tells the story of four sisters- Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy and their journey from childhood to womanhood. It’s about spirited young women. A beautiful classic and a heartwarming one. 

Little women is now a major motion picture directed by Greta Gerwig. 

19. Sister Outsider 

Through this book, Audre Lorde, tells her journey being a single mother, black woman, lesbian, and feminist. Sister Outsider is a collection of 15 essays that talk about sex, race, and ageism. Another beautiful and inspiring book. A must-read!

20. We Should All Be Feminist 

A short and insightful essay about feminism written by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. This book tackles the issues and misunderstandings associated with the word ‘feminist’. The book is phenomenal and one of the best feminist books that every woman should read!  

21. Men Explain Things To Me

Written by Rebecca Solnit, this book talks about the things that go wrong in a conversation between men and women. It’s a collection of essays on feminism, sexism, patriarchy, and many more, and she also shares her awful encounters. This book is an eye-opener and a must-read!

22. The Bluest Eye

A novel was written by Toni Morrison tells the story of an African-American girl Pecola who is regarded as ‘ugly’ due to her characteristics and dark skin. This novel explores racism, poverty and so much more. The Bluest Eye is heart-wrenching and powerful. Highly recommended!

23. Slay In Your Lane 

Written by Yomi Adegoke & Elizabeth Uviebinene, this book is about the endless challenges black women in the United Kingdom face throughout their lives, just because they’re black. This book is impactful and is a perfect balance between evidence and personal experience. 

Another feminist book that every woman should read!

24. The Second Sex 

Written by Simone De Beauvoir, this book discusses how women were treated throughout history. The Second Sex is major work of feminist philosophy and also led to the beginning of second-wave feminism. It’s one of the best feminist books that every woman must read. It’s well worth the time. 

25. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

Must-Read Feminist Books

The first book of Maya Angelou’s 7-part Autobiography series. This book tracks her journey from a young girl who was a victim of racism to a proud young woman who challenges prejudice. 

Not just about racism, she talks about a lot of issues. It’s heart-touching and inspires you to stand up for yourself. This book is a must-read and will leave a long impact on all the readers!

These 25 books on feminism that every woman should read will inspire anyone who identifies as a woman and also get you thinking about many issues like feminism, patriarchy, equality, and many more. As a female, you deserve to be treated equally and no one can take your rights away from you. 

If you haven’t read any of these books, it's high time that you read them all. Make sure you share this list with your friends so that they’re aware of feminism and other issues. Happy Reading!

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Abhishek Biju Nair

I grew up with immense love for Performing arts, Movies and Sports. I never thought that I could write an article. But life is worthwhile if you try! You never know what you’re capable of until you try. And then I tried writing for fun, and here I am!

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