Recommended Book: Does God Hate Women?

Recommended Book: Does God Hate Women? September 12, 2014

This book was published back in 2009, but I read it recently, and I really loved it, so I want to recommend it here.

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 This is the description of the book on Goodrads:

This fascinating book explores the role that religion and culture play in the oppression of women. Philosophy writers Ophelia Benson and Jeremy Stangroom ask probing questions about the way that religion shields the oppression of women from criticism and why many Western liberals, leftists and feminists have remained largely silent on the subject.The lives of women in the industrialized world have improved enormously in the last hundred years, especially so, in social, cultural and political terms, in the last forty. But throughout the rest of the world, a great many women lead lives of misery and sometimes plain horror. They are often considered and treated as the property of men and have few, if any, rights. Such treatment is generally sustained and protected by a combination of religion and culture.”Does God Hate Women?” explores instances of the oppression of women in the name of religious and cultural norms and how these issues play out both in the community and in the political arena. Drawing on philosophical concerns such as truth, relativism, knowledge and ethics, Benson and Stangroom assess the current situation and provide a rallying call for a progressive politics that is committed to universal values. This important new book will appeal to anyone interested in issues of global justice, human rights and multiculturalism

This book is one of the most persuasive books I have ever read, and it touches upon a great subject, and it reveals a very important gap in the feminist and liberal discourse. The book is persuasive not simply because its arguments are persuasive, but because there are many many examples in the book which really cover every aspect of the question. The book is filled with anecdotes, with real-life horror stories, and with their sheer number they leave no doubt for anyone. Religion is an inspiration, and a cause, to misogynistic and sexist people and causes all over the world, and the world has not really faced sexism until it has faced it in the way that it’s integral to many embodiments of religion.

Therefore, feminists and other supporters of equality have a duty to criticize religions and religious sexism. To exempt religion from the topic of sexism would result in a perpetuation of sexism.

There are many things I love about this book. I love how it chooses the examples. No one can dismiss the examples as “anecdotal evidence” because they are always revealing of systematic prejudices and discrimination, and because they are always motivated by religion, inspired by religion in a way that no one can call them secular. Of course, secular and atheistic sexism also exists, but this book shows it’s impossible to omit religion and focus only on other factors.

What I mainly love about this book is its international focus. Nowhere religious sexism is as crystallized as in my region, and no intellectual movement is complete if it’s not international in scope. This book is international in scope, and that is its biggest strength. I strongly recommend it.

You can buy the book from here. I know some readers are opposed to buying from Amazon. I apologize, I didn’t find any other link.

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