Sylvia Walby’s book provides a comprehensive rebuttal of the notion that feminism is dead. Rachel Benson reviews this definitive account of feminism’s present and future forms, and the progression of feminism into the mainstream
Typing “Daily Mail” and “feminism” into the internet probably isn’t a wise move. Within seconds a selection of stories appear with headlines declaring feminism “irrelevant”, “passé” and “dead” (not to mention being responsible for widening the poverty gap, making men second-class citizens and killing the art of home cooking).
In Reclaiming the F Word Catherine Redfern and Kristin Aune describe how “feminism is pronounced dead on a regular basis”. It is an argument that many feminists must be familiar with; therefore the opening lines of The Future of Feminism, the latest book from academic Sylvia Walby, are refreshingly defiant. They set out a clear agenda. Feminism remains active, relevant and powerful in the 21st century: “Feminism is not dead. This is not a postfeminist era. Feminism is still vibrant, despite declarations that it is over. Feminism is a success, although many gender inequalities remain. Feminism is taking powerful new forms, which make it unrecognisable to some.”