Cover image for Unladylike : a field guide to smashing the patriarchy and claiming your space / Cristen Conger and Caroline Ervin ; illustrated by Tyler Feder.
Unladylike : a field guide to smashing the patriarchy and claiming your space / Cristen Conger and Caroline Ervin ; illustrated by Tyler Feder.
Publication Information:
California : Ten Speed Press, [2018]

Physical Description:
281 pages : color illustrations ; 23 cm
Introduction: patriarchy says behave -- Gender trouble: witches, bitches, and wives -- Uterine furies: PMS, IUDs, and WTFs -- Head games: crazy, shrill, and sad -- Body baggage: too fat, too hairy, too you -- Beauty bargains: concealers, contours, and statement lips -- Creep factors: virgins, chivalry, and sex objects -- Sexual frustrations: hang-ups, hookups, and heartaches-- Money pits: glass floors, pink taxes, and golden skirts -- Talking points: communicating, debating, and relating -- Marching orders: resist, persist, and raise hell.
'Get ready to get unladylike with this field guide to the what's, why's, and how's of intersectional feminism and practical hell-raising. Through essential, inclusive, and illustrated explorations of what patriarchy looks like in the real world, authors and podcast hosts Cristen Conger and Caroline Ervin blend wild histories, astounding stats, social justice principles, and self-help advice to connect where the personal meets political in our bodies, brains, booty calls, bank accounts, and other confounding facets of modern woman-ing and nonbinary-ing. By laying out the uneven terrain of double-standards, head games, and handouts patriarchy has manspread across society for ages, Unladylike is here to unpack our gender baggage and map out the space that's ours to claim." -- Provided by publisher.
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Call Number
Material Type
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305.42 CON Book Adult General Collection

On Order



This fully intersectional, fully unapologetic, and fully radical field guide examines what happens when women break the rules, why and how the patriarchy is alive and well, and how fierce modern women can smash it. Funny, fact-driven, and full of wisdom from herstory, Unladylike is a feminist life guide for the modern era, examining the issues women of all ages and backgrounds deal with on a daily basis and offering kickass advice for how to deal with it all, from dating, sex, and friendship to rape culture, the wage gap, and intersectionality. Fully illustrated with art and infographics, authors and hosts of the hit Unladylike podcast Cristen Conger and Caroline Ervin handle both the political and personal implications of modern feminism with wit, sass, knowledge, and delightful feminist rage. Unladylike is an indispensable guide for how to be a woke modern woman who's ready to raise hell.

Author Notes

CRISTEN CONGER is a former senior staff writer and host for and co-creator of the hit podcast Stuff Mom Never Told You. She is a contributing writer for Refinery29, and her writing has appeared on Jezebel, Huffington Post Women, MSNBC, and ABC News. CAROLINE ERVIN is a podcast host and former editor at She has a journalism background and researches and speaks on issues of sexuality, health, history, and pop culture--all through the lens of feminism and gender. Their new podcast, Unladylike, launch in Janaury 2018 as part of Midroll Media's Earwolf network.

TYLER FEDER is an illustrator and comedy writer. She has illustrated for Netflix, Comedy Central, and ESPN, and her work has been featured in Glamour and Brigitte magazines.

Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

Following the success of their hit podcast Unladylike, Conger and Ervin have teamed with illustrator Feder for this smart, sassy field guide for feminists. While some content may be more applicable to younger readers, this book follows in the same vein as Kelly Williams Brown's Adulting, providing life advice and fact-filled information for modern women. With chapters devoted to a wide range of topics, including the wage gap, dating, and beauty, it's bound to benefit feminists looking to smash the patriarchy and live their best lives. Part of the appeal is found in the art and infographics, which often comically portray the messages crafted by Conger and Ervin and help drive home their message. VERDICT Unapologetic and witty, this work is a great choice for followers of Jennifer Baumgardner and -Roxane Gay but will also appeal to young adults and graphic novels fans.-Mattie Cook, Flat River Community Lib., MI © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Get Unladylike Regardless of who we are, what we look like, and how many advantages life has dropped in our laps, none of us is immune to patriarchy's ladylike claptrap. Guys get entitlement, gals get objectified, and nonbinary folks get dehumanized and worse. Like a broken record, women are still incentivized to be sexy (but not slutty), beauty-conscious (but not vain), motherly (but not smothering), and presidential (but not mannish). If we don't care to dare those tightropes? How selfish. So shrill. Just sad. Regardless of whether men are literally in charge, we all can internalize sexist preferences and put-downs like a contact high--or low.  Once you spot sexist species, summon patience. It might take more time, headspace, and digging to figure out where it came from and why it won't just die already. That's why this guide exists! The only women patriarchy fears more than unladylike women are persistent unladylike women. We're flies in the ointment, harpies at the frat house, and pussies grabbing back. Likeability, attractiveness, and class aren't our currencies, but we're far from bankrupt. So long as we're gutsy enough to get loud, loose, and livid, unladylike witches do what it takes to smash the patriarchy that stands in our way. At its core, this is a field guide to the patriarchal creepy crawlies that stand between you and the autonomous, safe, compassionate person you were put on this planet to be. To be clear, this isn't about magical makeovers (though we love a good makeover montage). Our unladylike feminism in action applies to  all major facets of our lives: brains, bodies, besties, wardrobes, work goals, wife roles, hookups, and f*ckups. No space is exempt, or topic taboo.  We'll reveal modern patriarchy's many disguises and what to do when its influencing, privileging, and profiteering slithers into your home, school, work, and even your mirror. You'll pick up some practical feminist life hacks as well as tips for detoxing from the sexist myths, mindsets, and stereotypes culture constantly force-feeds us. Exactly what that means will be different for everyone. Maybe you'll smash a stiletto through glass ceilings, cure Silicon Valley sexism, or volunteer for a rape crisis hotline--who knows? By the time we've arrived on the last page, we'll have mapped out a ready-to-go battle plan for finding your tribe, rising up, and pushing back together . That includes us, your authors, Cristen and Caroline. We've likewise found ourselves in all sorts of anxious quicksand, booby traps, and oops-I-did-it-again mudslides. We've been bad feminists, catty coworkers, and crazy ex-girlfriends. It happens. We also understand firsthand how easy it is to feel decidedly un exceptional, un worthy, and un hopeful about our potential to make the inside-out change we want to see in ourselves the environments around us. That's why it's our mission to present social justice self-help as intersectionally as possible, make clear the limits of our firsthand perspectives, and stay grounded in the truth that we're all works in progress. We've been obsessively researching and podcasting about all things gender and feminism for the better part of a decade, and despite witnessing all sorts of rapid progress, there's been no handy guide that holistically addresses what top-to-bottom, brains-to-butt-hair, inclusive feminist living can look like regardless of who you are. Unladylike is the hell-raising how-to y'all deserve--the one we wish we'd had while learning to crawl as baby feminists years ago, fresh out of college and sideswiped by professional sexism. We've packed it with judgment-free, age-unrestricted, gender-creative perspectives and pro-tips for adventurous, compassionate, and inclusive womaning and non-binary-ing. Let's go. Excerpted from Unladylike: A Field Guide to Smashing the Patriarchy and Claiming Your Space by Cristen Conger, Caroline Ervin All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.