This book was terrific. When I read the book MATERIAL WORLD, A GLOBAL FAMILY PORTRAIT, I thought there was no book like it that could be better. Now when I read it, all I wish is to have is WOMEN IN THE MATERIAL WORLD . I cannot believe how good it is. I recomend this book for all ages (I am 11).
This book really made me think about my life as compared to the lives of women around the world. It was amazing to see how many people lived without electricity and education and all the things people in America and other developed countries take for granted. It reminds you how everyone has similar needs for love and freedom to be themselves, but how people all around the world are very different. When you're surfing the net, sometimes you don't think that there are women somewhere else pounding grain and tending their 7 children. This book was utterly fascinating.
After living in ten U.S. states, England and Panama, I am well aware of economical differences between geograpthical areas. This book reminded me of the indoor physical space we Americans take for granted. The sheer luxury of a bedroom separate from the common living area, let alone bedrooms for the parents and each child!
Women in the Material World was written to correct a defect the author percieved in the previous book The Material World: that the women of the families were neglected subjects by the interviews and photographers. Because the authors chose statically average families, unmarried women, homosexual women and women without children were not chosen--we (I call into one of the above catagories) are a minority and therefore to include us in the book would create a false impression. The questions and replies are not trite. It is almost impossible for those of us used to the unlimited possibilities open to many (but by no means all) to understand how cirumscribed the lives of the vast majoirty of men and women are. Lacking the opporunity to know or understand other ways of living, it is very hard for them to address anything but the day to day issues facing them. Yet the answers given the women in this book are thoughful, insightful and show great compassion. Here, in the US the words diversity and tolerance are bandied about--here is a book that begins to show how different we are in our understanding of ourselves, each other and our place in the world--and also how much we have in common. Now we a book about the most neglected group--Children in the Material World.