Nonfiction Book Club
Our discussions take place in our Community Room unless otherwise indicated. Copies of the books for discussion are available at our Checkout Desk for readers registering for the discussion.
When Everything Changed: The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present
by Gail Collins
Tuesday, March 18, at 6:30 p.m.
Gail Collins, New York Times columnist and bestselling author, recounts the astounding revolution in women’s lives over the past 50 years. When Everything Changed begins in 1960, when most American women had to get their husbands’ permission to apply for a credit card. It ends in 2008 with Hillary Clinton’s historic presidential campaign. This was a time of cataclysmic change, when, after 400 years, expectations about the lives of American women were smashed in just a generation.
A comprehensive mix of oral history and Collins’s research–covering politics, fashion, popular culture, economics, sex, families, and work–When Everything Changed is the definitive book on five crucial decades of progress. The enormous strides made since 1960 include the advent of the birth control pill, the end of “Help Wanted–Male” and “Help Wanted–Female” ads, and the lifting of quotas for women in admission to medical and law schools. Collins describes what has happened in every realm of women’s lives, partly through the testimonies of both those who made history and those who simply made their way.
Older readers, men and women alike, will be startled as they are reminded of what their lives once were–”Father Knows Best” and “My Little Margie” on TV; daily weigh-ins for stewardesses; few female professors; no women in the Boston marathon, in combat zones, or in the police department. Younger readers will see their history in a rich new way.
This discussion will be held upstairs in the library.