Book Review – Scars Across Humanity: Understanding and Overcoming Violence Against Women, by Elaine Storkey

Some books just break you. They tear down your neatly compartmentalised perspectives and opinions. They “burst your bubble”, so to speak, causing the cultural and self-induced anaesthesia’s to be flushed out of your system; leaving you aware of a reality that you had never wanted to see before.

Some books need to break us. As Franz Kafka once wrote, “If the book we’re reading doesn’t wake us up with a blow to the head, what are we reading for?”

Elaine Storkey’s latest book, *Scars Across Humanity*, certainly does this.

And it’s a much needed blow — the violence against women has perpetuated on for far too long. Charting us through the issues of female genital mutilation, selective abortion and infanticide, rape, trafficking and domestic violence (to name only a few of the topics this book describes), *Scars Across Humanity* clearly diagnoses the pandemic of violence that is taking place towards women, in some form, on every continent of our planet.

This isn’t merely a book about dry statistics — this is a book about stories, human lives, and the demeaning, destructive, discriminating and dehumanising value that is ascribed to them.

You’ll be shaken when you read this book.  It’s terrifying in many ways. Some of the accounts are raw and brutal. But they need to be told, the lid needs to be lifted. The victims of this pandemic have been extremely courageous to stand up and share their stories; the least you can do is read them! The spread of this deepening, patriarchal inflicted scar needs to be stopped, and that can’t happen whilst many of us are in denial of its existence.

*Scars Across Humanity* is a powerful thrust in the direction of justice and inequality. By a long shot, this the most important book I’ve read in the past year – maybe my lifetime.

Please read this book, and tell others to read it too.

Tristan Sherwin is the author of *Love: Expressed* – Now Available



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