Perseus Books Group Best of the Backlist
What Will It Take to Make A Woman President?

Conversations About Women, Leadership and Power

by Marianne Schnall

Prompted by a question from her eight-year-old daughter during the 2008 election of Barack Obama—“Why haven’t we ever had a woman president?”—Marianne Schnall set out on a journey to find the answer. A widely published writer, author, and interviewer, and the Executive Director of Feminist.com, Schnall began looking at the issues from various angles and perspectives, gathering viewpoints from influential people from all sectors.

What Will It Take to Make A Woman President? features interviews with politicians, public officials, thought leaders, writers, artists, and activists in an attempt to discover the obstacles that have held women back and what needs to change in order to elect a woman into the White House.

With insights and personal anecdotes from Sheryl Sandberg, Maya Angelou, Gloria Steinem, Nancy Pelosi, Nicholas Kristof, Melissa Etheridge, and many more, this book addresses timely, provocative issues involving women, politics, and power. With a broader goal of encouraging women and girls to be leaders in their lives, their communities, and the larger world, Schnall and her interviewees explore the changing paradigms occurring in politics and in our culture with the hope of moving toward meaningful and effective solutions—and a world where a woman can be president.
 
ISBN 9781580054966
$17.00 · Trade Paper
A Thousand Sisters

My Journey into the Worst Place on Earth to Be a Woman

by Lisa J. Shannon

Lisa Shannon had what some would call a good life—her own business, a successful fiancé, a secure home. Then one day in 2005, shortly after her father’s death, an episode of Oprah changed everything. The show about women in the Congo depicted atrocities too horrible to comprehend: millions dead, women gang-raped and tortured, children starving and dying in shocking numbers. That day Lisa woke up to her dissatisfaction with the “good” life and to her role as an activist and a sister.

She created a foundation called Run for Congo Women, with the goal to raise money to sponsor 30 Congolese women. What started as a solo 30-mile run has now grown into a national organization in connection with Women for Women International. Run for Congo Women holds fundraising runs in four countries and ten states, and continues to raise money and awareness. In A Thousand Sisters, Lisa shares firsthand accounts of her experiences visiting the Congo, the women she’s helped, and the relationships she’s formed. With compelling stories of why she remains committed to this cause, Lisa inspires her audience to reach out and help as well, forming a sisterhood that transcends geographic boundaries.
 
ISBN 9781580053594
$16.95 · Trade Paper
Purge

Rehab Diaries

by Nicole Johns

Purge is a beautifully crafted memoir that has a Girl, Interrupted feel. In this raw and engaging account of her months in rehab, Nicole Johns documents her stay in a residential treatment facility for eating disorders. Her prose is lucid and vivid, as she seamlessly switches verb tenses and moves through time. She unearths several important themes: body image and sexuality, sexual assault and relationships, and the struggle to piece together one's path in life. While other books about eating disorders and treatment may sugarcoat the harsh realities of living with and recovering from an eating disorder, Purge does not hold back. The author presents an honest, detailed account of her experience with treatment, avoiding the clichéd happily-ever-after ending while still offering hope to those who struggle with eating disorders, as well as anyone who has watched a loved one fight to recover from an eating disorder. Purge sends a message: though the road may be rough, ultimately there is hope.
 
ISBN 9781580052740
$16.95 · Trade Paper
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Yes Means Yes!

Visions of Female Sexual Power and A World Without Rape

by Jaclyn Friedman

In this groundbreaking new look at rape edited by writer and activist Jaclyn Freidman and Full Frontal Feminism and He’s A Stud, She’s A Slut author Jessica Valenti, the way we view rape in our culture is finally dismantled and replaced with a genuine understanding and respect for female sexual pleasure. Feminist, political, and activist writers alike will present their ideas for a paradigm shift from the “No Means No” model—an approach that while necessary for where we were in 1974, needs an overhaul today.

Yes Means Yes will bring to the table a dazzling variety of perspectives and experiences focused on the theory that educating all people to value female sexuality and pleasure leads to viewing women differently, and ending rape. Yes Means Yes aims to have radical and far-reaching effects: from teaching men to treat women as collaborators and not conquests, encouraging men and women that women can enjoy sex instead of being shamed for it, and ultimately, that our children can inherit a world where rape is rare and swiftly punished. With commentary on public sex education, pornography, mass media, Yes Means Yes is a powerful and revolutionary anthology.

 
ISBN 9781580052573
$16.95 · Trade Paper
What You Really Really Want

The Smart Girl's Shame-Free Guide to Sex and Safety

Jacyln Friedman

In this empowering, accessible guide, Jaclyn Friedman—co-editor of Yes Means Yes—gives young women the tools to decipher the modern world’s confusing, hypersexualized, sometimes dangerous landscape so they can define their own sexual identity. Friedman decries the hypocrisy and mixed messages of our culture (we’re failures if we don’t act sexy, but we’re sluts if we actually pursue sex; we need to be protected from rapists lurking in bushes, but deserve “whatever we get” if we have a drink at a party and wear a skirt), and encourages readers to separate fear from fact, decode the damaging messages all around them, and discover a healthy personal sexuality.

Educational and interactive, What You Really Really Want includes revealing quizzes, creative exercises, and reality-based advice about sex and sexuality today. With Friedman’s informed advice to guide them, readers will build new skills for safely expressing their sexuality with lovers and explore effective ways to talk about tricky issues with family and friends—and learn how to make the world a little safer for everyone else’s sexuality along the way.
 
ISBN 9781580053440
$17.00 · Trade Paper
Beautiful You

A Daily Guide to Radical Self-Acceptance

Rosie Molinary

In Beautiful You author Rosie Molinary passionately encourages women—whatever their size, shape, or color—to work toward feeling wonderful about themselves despite today’s media-saturated culture. Drawing on self-awareness, creativity, and mind-body connections, Molinary incorporates practical techniques into a 365-day action plan that empowers women to regain a healthy self-image, shore up self-confidence, reframe and break undermining habits of self-criticism, and champion their own emotional and physical well-being. Through accessible, doable daily actions, women and girls learn to manifest a healthy outlook on life—teaching them to live large, and starting them on the path to learning to love themselves and others. Molinary steers clear of the florid affirmations and daily meditations often utilized by books geared toward personal growth, instead delivering a hip, modern guide of inspirational thought and action that keeps pace with the times. A practical, candid, and accessible handbook, Beautiful You strikes a chord with every woman who has ever faltered in her self-confidence or lost her personal brilliance—and it makes sure she never lets it happen again.
 
ISBN 9781580053310
$16.95 · Trade Paper
America and the Pill

A History of Promise, Peril, and Liberation

by Elaine Tyler May

In 1960, the FDA approved the contraceptive commonly known as “the pill.” Advocates, developers, and manufacturers believed that the convenient new drug would put an end to unwanted pregnancy, ensure happy marriages, and even eradicate poverty. But as renowned historian Elaine Tyler May reveals in America and the Pill, it was women who embraced it and created change. They used the pill to challenge the authority of doctors, pharmaceutical companies, and lawmakers. They demonstrated that the pill was about much more than family planning—it offered women control over their bodies and their lives. From little-known accounts of the early years to personal testimonies from young women today, May illuminates what the pill did and did not achieve during its half century on the market.
 
ISBN 9780465024599
$15.99 · Trade Paper
Reading Women

How the Great Books of Feminism Changed My Life

by Stephanie Staal

When Stephanie Staal first read The Feminine Mystique in college, she found it “a mildly interesting relic from another era.” But more than a decade later, as a married stay-at-home mom in the suburbs, Staal rediscovered Betty Friedan’s classic work—and was surprised how much she identified with the laments and misgivings of 1950s housewives. She set out on a quest: to reenroll at Barnard and re-read the great books she had first encountered as an undergrad.

From the banishment of Eve to Judith Butler’s Gender Trouble, Staal explores the significance of each of these classic tales by and of women, highlighting the relevance these ideas still have today. This process leads Staal to find the self she thought she had lost—curious and ambitious, zany and critical—and inspires new understandings of her relationships with her husband, her mother, and her daughter.

 

ISBN 9781586488727
$15.99 · Trade Paper
A Strange Stirring

The Feminine Mystique and American Women at the Dawn of the 1960s

by Stephanie Coontz

In 1963, Betty Friedan unleashed a storm of controversy with her bestselling book, The Feminine Mystique. Women wrote to her by the hundreds to say that the book had transformed, even saved, their lives. Nearly half a century later, many women still recall where they were and what they were doing when they first read the book. In A Strange Stirring, prominent historian of women and marriage Stephanie Coontz strips away the myths, examining what The Feminine Mystique actually said, and which groups of women were affected. Coontz takes us back to the early 1960s – the age of Mad Men – when the sexual revolution was barely nascent, middle class wives stayed at home, and husbands retained legal control over almost every aspect of family life. Based on extensive research in the magazines and popular culture of the 1940s, 1950s, and early 1960s, as well as interviews with women and men who read The Feminine Mystique shortly after its publication, A Strange Stirring brilliantly illuminates how Friedan’s book emboldened a generation of women to realize that their boredom and dissatisfaction stemmed from political injustice rather than personal weakness.
 
ISBN 9780465028429
$15.99 · Trade Paper