When Women Were Birds: A Voice Analysis

1399 Words 6 Pages
What does it mean to have a voice? What does one do with their voice? How can one make a difference with their voice? All of these questions are pondered, in Terry Tempest Williams’ When Women Were Birds, and Laurie Penny’s Unspeakable Things. While these books, and authors for that matter, appear to be completely different, their underlying messages speak to the same thing. That “thing” is voice. Who has one, who doesn’t, and what it means to use it. When Women Were Birds, is a beautifully written book. Terry Tempest Williams starts out by telling by briefly sharing what gave her the idea to write this book. She recounts how her mother told her that she wanted her to have her journals, but Williams had to promise not to read them until after …show more content…
She starts out by making sure it is very clear that her book is “…Not a fairy tale.” (Penny 1). The subhead of her book title is “Sex, Lies, and Revolution”, this gives preview into topics that will dominate most of the book in one way or another. Penny wastes no time with sugar coating her opinions and criticisms nor does she shy away from subjects that are thought of as difficult to talk about. Within the individual chapters there are many subheads, each which discuss a specific issue or bring up a certain point that relates back to the umbrella topic of the chapter. This organization of the book makes her points clear and easy to follow. Throughout this book she divulges information about her own life, in an autobiographical sort of way. One of the things that she shares about herself that plays a large part, throughout the rest of the book, is her struggle with an eating disorder. Penny also shares her thoughts on modern day feminism, politics, and the oppression of women. Towards the end of the book there is a call for a new kind of feminism. This feminism is all about freedom for anyone and everyone in anything and everything. Freedom to love who you love, to be what you want to be, and to use your voice to speak up and never be

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