four stars · review

Review: The Mother of All Questions

Title: The Mother of All Questions
Author: Rebecca Solnit
Rating: ★★★★
Summary: In a timely and incisive follow-up to her national bestseller Men Explain Things to Me, Rebecca Solnit offers sharp commentary on women who refuse to be silenced, misogynistic violence, the fragile masculinity of the literary canon, the gender binary, the recent history of rape jokes, and much more.


Note: an eARC of this title was acquired via Edelweiss+.

Comprised of essays from the last two years, Solnit’s latest, The Mother of All Questions, is a continuation of the feminist issues to which she gave voice in Men Explain Things to Me, grouped together under two headings: “After Silence” and “Breaking the Story.” The book is slim at 160 pages, but Solnit’s observations make you pay attention to each word or phrase. Don’t go into this thinking it will be a nice, short read. (Because when is the examination of ingrained sexual and gendered behavior ever “nice and short”?) Savor each sentence and anecdote. Write in the margins. Underline. Take notes. Hope that in three more years, maybe we won’t need Solnit to again write so insightfully about feminism.

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