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Off the Stacks: ‘Big Girls Don’t Cry’ by Rebecca Traister

by Kim on June 24, 2011 · 8 comments

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Off the Stacks is a weekly-ish feature where I highlight a nonfiction book I’m curious about but will probably run out of hours in the day to actually read. I’m hoping that by highlighting titles this way, I can encourage other people to give the book a try, and, if it’s great, consider nominating it later this year for the Indie Lit Awards. Consider these books stamped with the “Sophisticated Dorkiness Seal of Curious Approval.”

big girls don't cryTitle: Big Girls Don’t Cry: The Election That Changed Everything For American Women
Author: Rebecca Traister
Publisher: Free Press, an imprint of Simon & Schuster
Nonfiction Type: Narrative Nonfiction
Topics Covered: Politics, Hillary Clinton, Sarah Palin, feminism, women, United States

What It’s About: The 2008 presidential election was a big one for a number of reasons, but the narrative this book focuses on is the role of women as candidates, spouses, and commentators. Traister, a reporter for Salon, offers an account of the election, covering a range of women including Sarah Palin, Tina Fey, Katic Couric, and Hillary Clinton and exploring the different reactions the candidates received throughout the election season.

Why I Want to Read It: It’s by a journalist! And Cass (Bonjour, Cass!) recommended it! I know my summary made the book sound a little dry, but I really don’t think it is. I’ve had my eye on this one since Cass reviewed it last year, and it made “Off the Stacks” because it came out in paperback this week, making it the perfect time to grab a copy and reflect on women’s changing role in politics as the next election starts to gear up (Already? Ridiculous, I know!).

Who Else Might Like It: Political junkies, women, fans of (or those curious about) The Boys on the Bus or Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail 1972, first- and second-wave second- and third-wave feminists

Reviews: Bonjour, Cass! | NPR |

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Melissa June 24, 2011 at 8:48 am

I keep checking this one out from the library and not getting to it. Love the subject matter, but am wondering how different this one is from NOTES FROM THE CRACKED CEILING by Anne Kornblut. Guess there’s only one way for me to find out ….

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Kim June 24, 2011 at 4:31 pm

I hadn’t heard of the other one you mentioned, but I love the title. I’m off to the library website to check it out now :)

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Michelle June 25, 2011 at 10:31 pm

Interesting! I am wondering if the upcoming 2012 election will be just as monumental for women. I’d like to think that things definitely changed forever, but the United States does have a tendency to be slightly reactionary when it comes to progress at times. I think the timing of this book in paperback is perfect, as election news is going to start heating up in the latter half of this year and well into next!

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Kim June 26, 2011 at 8:26 pm

That will be really curious to see. With Palin and Bachmann on the Republican side, it could be interesting. I can’t believe election is already getting talked about already.

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Michelle June 26, 2011 at 8:31 pm

I know, but I have to admit, I’m rather excited. It is going to be one heck of a campaign process, given the state of the economy, the ongoing war, the debate over health care and government spending.

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Kim June 28, 2011 at 5:44 am

Very true, it’s going to be an intense one. I’m already sad about all the negative ads and screwy stuff that’s going to happen though — that always wears me out by the end!

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Unruly Reader June 27, 2011 at 9:21 am

Oh, I’ve got to read this book! It sounds like all kinds of goodness: politics, journalism, feminism, and narrative nonfiction.

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Kim June 28, 2011 at 5:44 am

I really want to read it. I’m on the library hold list, so we’ll see what my reading life looks like when it finally gets here :)

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