Me, Not You: endorsements and reviews

‘Me, not you is an essential book for this historical moment. Phipps adds to the growing consideration of “carceral feminisms” by writing an accessible text that addresses how white women can enact violence while organising to end sexual violence. I was particularly interested in the book’s theorisation of “political whiteness,” a concept that owes much to the work of Black feminist scholars and activists. Me, not you uplifts this lineage and offers more food for thought. For anyone interested in anti-violence, anti-racism, and anti-criminalisation organising, this book is required reading. I’ll be coming back to it often.’

– Mariame Kaba

‘This is a necessary and vital addition to feminist texts. Alison Phipps has done exactly what women of colour wish we saw more of during these days of #NotAllWhiteWomen. She has looked white feminism and political whiteness in the eyes and delivered a much-needed reckoning. It is exhausting to both fight political whiteness and explain to white women what that whiteness is, how it benefits them and why the status quo must end if we are all to be free. This is a book I will be carrying everywhere, eager to share, excited to have Phipps’ words fighting alongside me.’

– Mona Eltahawy

Selected reviews

“Me, not you feminism’, as elucidated powerfully by Phipps, is the feminism of the singular, white, fragile suffering subject, who becomes a singular and quintessential political category, subsuming and erasing all others…. Phipps makes a forceful genealogy from first wave feminists who argued for the vote in order to exclude others—notably, people of colour – from the electorate, to second and third wave activists and to recent struggles.‘ Dana Naomy Mills in Tribune Magazine

‘For a notably compact book, Phipps traverses a lot of ground, joining the dots not only between #MeToo and its first-and-second wave antecedents (or colonial and carceral feminisms), but also between wider intersecting systems which produce sexual violence— heteropatriarchy, racial capitalism and colonialism. She has a knack for deftly weaving together emblematic examples, historical precedents and related phenomena (for example, Anita Hill and Christine Blasey Ford) in new and interesting ways.’ Zora Simic in Australian Humanities Review

‘If Phipps echoes thinkers such as Audre Lorde and, in her use of the term “political whiteness”, Daniel Martinez HoSang, novelty lies in her argument that demographic distortion has led to the dominance of a narrative of female victimhood that can play into the hands of the ultra-conservative far right. This is the extreme expression of the “trouble” alluded to in the book’s subtitle: that “‘speaking out’ can become ‘speaking over’” – more “me, not you” than “me too”.’ Freya Marshall Payne in the Times Literary Supplement

‘this short and accessible book challenges us to think deeply about how the politics of woundedness, outrage and carcerality are embedded within the feminist movement and our own organising. In a moment in which calls to ‘take down violent men’ remain frequently voiced in the public sphere, thinking hard about the violence that could be enacted precisely through such responses is paramount. ’ Lili Schwoerer in LSE Review of Books

‘Phippsdetailed and careful itemisation will be useful because it provides some coordinates to watch out for, which will be especially valuable to white feminists who are willing to learn but nevertheless find themselves automatically defensive when allegations of privilege come their way.’ Katherine Parker-Hay in Textual Practice

Now more than ever, we need to develop and enact an intersectional feminist praxis – and #Me, Not You is one of the tools we will need to use.‘ Rachel Phillips in Journal of International Women’s Studies

‘This accessible book is a vital critique of the dominance and weaponization of whiteness within mainstream feminism.’ Claire Sedgwick in Feminist Studies Association blog

‘What is impressive about the book is how Phipps is able to connect the dots between these various issues with both Feminist Theory and the wider history of the feminist movement without losing the urgency of her argument.’ Sophie Harman in the Sociological Review

‘This is a guide on how feminists can critically analyse mainstream white feminism and become aware of the intersecting dynamics mentioned throughout the book. Phipps makes clear that what is needed is a movement that focuses on restructuring society. While Phipps admits that this will not happen in our lifetime, it means feminists must use this vision to guide their current politics. Me, Not You is essential reading for white women everywhere.’ Zoe Tongue in the f word

Also reviewed in Feminist Review, Sociological Research Online, Gender Work & Organization, Cultural Sociology, European Journal of Women’s Studies, Journal of Sociology, Limina, Gender Place & Culture, Psychology of Women & Equalities Review, Times Literary Supplement, The New Feminist, Allegra Lab, Working Mums, The Spectator, The Radical Notion and New Socialist. Recommended as one of six ‘must-read books’ in Stylist magazine’s International Women’s Day issue, 2021