Eve Was Shamed

Eve Was Shamed : How British Justice is Failing Women

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What comes after #MeToo? One of our most eminent lawyers and defenders of human rights answers with this urgent, authoritative and deeply shocking look at British justice

In Eve Was Shamed Helena Kennedy forensically examines the pressing new evidence that women are still being discriminated against throughout the legal system, from the High Court (where only 21% of judges are women) to female prisons (where 84% of inmates are held for non-violent offences despite the refrain that prison should only be used for violent or serious crime). In between are the so-called `lifestyle' choices of the Rotherham girls; the failings of the current rules on excluding victims' sexual history from rape trials; battered wives being asked why they don't `just leave' their partners; the way statistics hide the double discrimination experienced by BAME and disabled women; the failure to prosecute cases of female genital mutilation... the list goes on. The law holds up a mirror to society and it is failing women.

The #MeToo campaign has been in part a reaction to those failures. So what comes next? How do we codify what we've learned? In this richly detailed and shocking book, one of our most eminent human rights thinkers and practitioners shows with force and fury that change for women must start at the heart of what makes society just.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 352 pages
  • 162 x 240 x 33mm | 573g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1784742228
  • 9781784742225
  • 211,001

Review Text

"A shocking wake-up call, this book will have you demanding justice"
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Review quote

"Stimulating and scary" -- Jeanette Winterson * Guardian * "An excellent and forensic takedown... fascinating and chilling... women are being let down wholesale by a justice system designed with men in mind. And almost the worst thing is, it doesn't have to be this way" -- Caroline Criado-Perez * Guardian * "An unflinching look at women in the justice system... an important book because it challenges acquiescence to everyday sexism and inspires change" -- Kirsty Brimelow * The Times, **Books of the Year** * "Helena Kennedy has written a chilling expose of how the law has historically failed women. Taking no prisoners, Kennedy outlines the damage we must undo, and the changes we must make. Eve was Shamed is a necessary book for the #MeToo era" -- Amanda Foreman "Passionate and persuasive proof that equal justice is an ideal yet to be achieved. Drawing upon her outstanding career at the defence Bar and of leading reform in Parliament, Helena Kennedy eloquently urges an end to the discrimination and dehumanisation that women suffer in the courts, and in their lives" -- Geoffrey Robertson QC "A call to arms, but it is also a whistle-stop tour of the wide-ranging societal and legal changes which have taken place over the last 40 years. The breadth of her book is enormous... In order to explain where we are, Kennedy looks back to where we have come. She does this most powerfully" -- Sarah Langford * Prospect * "Justice for women in this country is failing at every point of our interaction with it, for reasons ranging from age-old prejudice to modern austerity... Yet in her rigorous tenacity, her undimmed enthusiasm for the fight, Helena Kennedy spreads the irrational buoyancy of which revolutions are made" -- Zoe Williams * Guardian * "A shocking wake-up call, this book will have you demanding justice" * Emerald Street * "if I were to be charged with a crime, I would definitely want Helena Kennedy QC in my corner" -- Sarah Baxter * Sunday Times * "Kennedy... writes with calm authority. Her analysis of how such women fail to conform to what remain white, male ideas about appropriate female behaviour and femininity in court...is incisive" -- Afua Hirsch * Guardian * "As eerily persuasive a read as you'd expect from one of the country's top barristers... Kennedy lays bare a panoply of injustices that explain the rage unleashed post-Weinstein... Kennedy's vivacious prose and plentiful research yields a pacy, important read that both elucidates the current climate and offers sage pointers on where to go next" -- Gwen Smith * i * "A passionately argued eye-opener...both a deeply depressing read and a hugely energising wake-up call for anyone concerned with justice, diversity and human dignity" -- Gemma Simmonds * The Tablet, **Books of the Year** * "Compelling... The marginal advances that have been secured fade into irrelevance in comparison with the horrific chronicle of shortcomings that exist for women in the courts...bang up to date... Kennedy writes well and illustrates her cases with heartrending individual examples" -- Julia Langdon * The Tablet *
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About Helena Kennedy

Helena Kennedy QC is one of Britain's most distinguished lawyers and public figures. She is a regular broadcaster, journalist and lecturer and throughout her career has focussed on giving voice to those who have least power in the system, championing civil liberties and civil rights. Her 1992 book Eve Was Framed led to a number of key reforms for women and was followed in 2004 by Just Law. She was the Master of Mansfield College, University of Oxford, from 2011 to 2018, and was awarded a life peerage in 1997. Born in Glasgow, she lives in London.
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