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Big Girls Don't Cry

Cover of Big Girls Don't Cry

Big Girls Don't Cry

The Election that Changed Everything for American Women
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Salon.com reporter Rebecca Traister provides a social commentary on how the 2008 presidential election brought issues concerning women, power, sexism, and feminism to the fore.

In the last two years, the United States—-its history, assumptions, prejudices, and vocabulary—-have all cracked open. A woman won a state presidential primary contest (quite a few of them, actually) for the first time in this country's history. Less than a year later, a vice-presidential candidate concluded her appearance in a national debate and immediately reached for her newborn baby. A few months after that, an African American woman moved into the White House not as an employee but as the First Lady. She is only the third First Lady in American history to have a postgraduate degree, and for most of her marriage, she has out-earned her husband.

In Big Girls Don't Cry, Rebecca Traister, a Salon.com columnist whose election coverage garnered much attention, makes sense of this moment in American history, in which women broke barriers and changed the country's narrative in completely unexpected ways: How did the volatile, exhilarating events of the 2008 election fit together? What lessons can be learned from these great political upheavals about women, politics, and the media?

In an utterly engaging, razor-sharp narrative interlaced with her first-person account of being a young woman navigating this turbulent and exciting time, Traister explores how—-thanks to the campaigns of Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin, and the history-making work and visibility of Michelle Obama, Tina Fey, Rachel Maddow, Katie Couric, and others—-women began to emerge stronger than ever on the national stage.

Salon.com reporter Rebecca Traister provides a social commentary on how the 2008 presidential election brought issues concerning women, power, sexism, and feminism to the fore.

In the last two years, the United States—-its history, assumptions, prejudices, and vocabulary—-have all cracked open. A woman won a state presidential primary contest (quite a few of them, actually) for the first time in this country's history. Less than a year later, a vice-presidential candidate concluded her appearance in a national debate and immediately reached for her newborn baby. A few months after that, an African American woman moved into the White House not as an employee but as the First Lady. She is only the third First Lady in American history to have a postgraduate degree, and for most of her marriage, she has out-earned her husband.

In Big Girls Don't Cry, Rebecca Traister, a Salon.com columnist whose election coverage garnered much attention, makes sense of this moment in American history, in which women broke barriers and changed the country's narrative in completely unexpected ways: How did the volatile, exhilarating events of the 2008 election fit together? What lessons can be learned from these great political upheavals about women, politics, and the media?

In an utterly engaging, razor-sharp narrative interlaced with her first-person account of being a young woman navigating this turbulent and exciting time, Traister explores how—-thanks to the campaigns of Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin, and the history-making work and visibility of Michelle Obama, Tina Fey, Rachel Maddow, Katie Couric, and others—-women began to emerge stronger than ever on the national stage.

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  • AudioFile Magazine Traister's nuanced analysis of gender politics in the 2008 election is handled superbly by narrator Kirsten Potter. Given the nearly two-year presidential campaign, there are ample sound bites that could have been over-embellished. But Potter maintains a solid presentation, providing inflection and tone but not outright impersonations of the wide pool of candidates. Her pacing and emphasis throughout the more detailed passages also make listening highly enjoyable. Traister's research is extensive and filled with an array of quotes from new and traditional media. Her skill at teasing out recurring misogynistic themes and rhetoric will change many listeners' views of the election regardless of whom they voted for. L.E. (c) AudioFile 2010, Portland, Maine
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    Not permitted
    File-sharing: 
    Not permitted
    Peer-to-peer usage: 
    Not permitted
    All copies of this title, including those transferred to portable devices and other media, must be deleted/destroyed at the end of the lending period.

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The Election that Changed Everything for American Women
Rebecca Traister
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