Fighting with the Sky

Manmade Breast Cancers [Women's Studies Wednesday]

Posted on: August 26, 2009

Manmade Breast Cancers by Zillah Eisenstein


I first read
Manmade Breast Cancer for Intro to Women’s Studies, but it was so good that I have read it again since then. This book is all about how the environment, politics, race, and culture intersect on women’s bodies in the form of breast health.

From the back cover:

A new understanding of humanity and feminism from the starting point of breast health is the ultimate goal of Zillah Eisenstein’s political memoir of her family’s experience with breast cancer. The well-known feminist author brings together a critique of environmental damage and the health of women’s bodies, gains perspective on the role race plays as a factor in breast cancers and in political agenda, links prevention and treatment, and connects individual support and political change.


I was not expecting to be reading a book about breast cancer in my intro to women’s studies, I was thinking that would be more of something that would be covered in a women’s health class. But after reading the book and seeing the intertwining of personal/family stories with the intersectionality of breast cancer, I realized why our professor had us read this book. This book shows the many ways in which sexism (and other forms of oppression) work their way into the very personal — the body — and how different forms of oppressions are intertwined.

This is not just a read for people interested in breast cancer, but for people interested in seeing how women’s lives are affected by all of these intersections. It’s a great book that is well written by incorporating different kinds of writing — from personal stories to political investigations.

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1 Response to "Manmade Breast Cancers [Women's Studies Wednesday]"

Thanks for the recommendation.

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