Creative Writing About Menstruation
by Cassie Premo Steele, Ph.D.
Paperback: 176 pages
Publisher: Summerhouse Pr (April 1, 1999)
Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
Review by Christina Francine
Some cultures regard woman's puberty as taboo and something we should be ashamed of; not all. Steele profiles various cultures' ways of viewing womanhood, especially the Western one. Here, a woman is to look, act, think, and dress like a man. How did this come to be and who says so?
This book is about ending the silence and stigma that occurs concerning menstruation. Many women today still grow quiet when the subject comes up. Steele's book brings voice, an openness on the topic.
The book moves through four phases, just as a woman and their bodies do. The first phase is "Early Moons"...those first periods. The second phase is "Waxing Moons...Coming to Light." It moves from adolescence to adulthood; of feelings, dreams and consciousness. It also discusses the position our culture places women in as daughters, wives, mothers, sister, and patients dealing with sons, husbands, fathers, brothers, and doctors.
The third phase is "Full Moon Celebrations." This section provides the differences in how mainstream cultures differs from "natural" or "normal." The forth phase is "Re-entering the Dark: Poetry and Prayer." Here, poetry emphasizes the power of being female, suggests menstruation is more than physical. The back of the book contains notes, a bibliography, and a listing of contributors, including their picture and Biography. There are 27 contributors in all.
As a woman reading Steele's book Moon Days, I nodded often and said, "Hmm-hmm, yes, that's true" often. Steele removes the baggage and gets to the bare truth. I liked her book so much I shared it with my daughters; ages seventeen and twenty, as well as women friends and relatives.
I've always wanted my daughters to be comfortable and proud of being female, to not view themselves as weak or less than men. Women and men are just different. One is not better than the other. We discussed being women, shared our thoughts, concerns, and dreams. Steele provided a springboard.
Readers will find themselves nodding in agreement, and recalling their first period and everything happening around it. Most will smile, some shed tears, but all will feel a kinship with other women. A book to be treasured and shared by females everywhere. Like having a conversation with a wise, strong and loving mother. Perfect for mothers and daughters, or as a gift. Empowering and passionate. Highly recommended.