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Best Books to Read on Second Wave Feminism

This article showcases our top picks for the best second wave feminism books. We reached out to industry leaders and experts who have contributed the suggestions within this article (they have been credited for their contributions below).

We are keen to hear your feedback on all of our content and our comment section is a moderated space to express your thoughts and feelings related (or not) to this article This list is in no particular order.


Sisterhood Is Powerful by ROBIN (ed.) MORGAN

This product was recommended by Carol Queen from Good Vibrations

Subtitled An Anthology of Writings from the Women’s Liberation Movement and published in 1970, this book is one of the most important works of second-wave feminism; it collects some of the most notable activist voices of its time, but more importantly, it introduces the wide range of issues that these feminist foremothers saw as crucial points that could lead to equality.


Pleasure & Danger by Carole S. Vance

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After the feminist sex wars were in full flame, this anthology appeared (in 1984) to share the perspectives of women who in many cases would be the founding thinkers of sex-positive feminism. Gayle Rubin’s essay Thinking Sex alone would be worth getting the book, but there are so many more iconic voices included in this groundbreaking work.


Desiring Revolution by Jane Gerhard

This product was recommended by Jennifer Willy from Etia

Gerhard asks why issues of sex and female pleasure came to matter so much to these “second-wave feminists”. Gerhard begins by showing how the marriage experts of the first half of the twentieth century led people to believe that female sexuality was bound up in bearing children.


The Second Wave: A Reader in Feminist Theory by Linda Nicholson

This product was recommended by Jennifer Willy from Etia

The Second Wave: A Reader in Feminist Theory by Linda Nicholson collects many of the major essays of feminist theory of the past forty years, essays by the figures who have made key contributions to feminist theory during this period and have generated extensive discussion.


Feminist Therapist by Jessica Heriot

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Feminist Therapist: How Second Wave Feminism Changed Psychotherapy and Me by Jessica Heriot discovered Women’s Liberation in 1969 and became an avid feminist. A few years later, she was introduced to “feminist therapy” and decided to use her social work degree to counsel women.

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