Calling Soraya Chemaly’s book, Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women’s Anger, powerful or moving does not even come close to describing the deep, courageous dive she takes to expose the historical-cultural development of the American emotional landscape and how it is stunting our growth as individuals, communities, and a nation.
Who is this book best for?
All Americans, really–age, gender, race, and political leanings can all be held within these pages.
The publisher’s page states Rage Becomes Her is “a transformative book urging twenty-first century-women to embrace their anger and harness it as a tool for lasting personal and societal change.”
I acknowledge my white and socioeconomic privilege absolutely impacted how I digested this book insomuch as I don’t have nearly as much to lose by inhabiting my anger and supporting the anger of other women as people of color and people who do not have as much financial privilege. The book does include minority voices (thank goodness!) and attend to the ways race/heritage, socioeconomic status, and impact one’s experience of anger.
What was my response?
It feels like such a relief to read this book! Right now, I’m in the messy middle stages of learning to channel my own anger into a broader agenda and thus, the process of honing my anger as important and real and worthy of existing is getting higher on my agenda. Since I was young, I’ve known that catering to men is ingrained in me, as it is in many women. My parents dictate that I attend an all-girls high school allowed me to grow into my voice and power more than many other young women…and, yet, I still fall prey to silencing myself in the effort to “be good” and “professional.” That includes dealing with anger.
This book isn’t written as a self-help book, but you’re unlikely to get to the back cover without being somewhat changed.
About Soraya Chemaly
(copied from her website)
Author of Rage Becomes Her, Soraya Chemaly is a writer and activist whose work focuses on the role of gender in culture, politics, religion and media. She is the Director of the Women’s Media Center Speech Project and organizer of the Safety and Free Speech Coalition, both of which are involved in curbing online abuse, media and tech diversity, and expanding women’s freedom of expression.
Soraya started her career working as an associate editor at Paris Passion/Time Out Magazine in Paris and was the co-founder and editor of a DC-based city listings magazine, Key DC, for several years before joining the Gannet Corporation as Precision Marketing Manager and New Media Analyst. In 1994, she left Gannett to help launch the Newspaper and Media Division at Claritas Corporation (now part of Nielsen, Inc.), a pioneer in consumer demography, database marketing and data technology owned by VNU. She served as Claritas’ Senior Vice President of Corporate Marketing, responsible for market development and marketing strategy, before leaving in 2001 to form her own consulting firm, working in the media and data technology fields.
In 2013, she won the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication’s (AEJMC)’s Donna Allen Award for Feminist Advocacy and the Secular Woman Feminist Activism Award. In 2014, she was named one of Elle Magazine’s 25 Inspiring Women to Follow on Twitter. She writes and speaks regularly about gender, media, tech, education, women’s rights, sexual violence and free speech.
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