Thirty Ways of Looking at Hillary
By Susan Morrison
272 pages. HarperCollins.
Hillary Clinton was definitely onto something when she referred to herself as a "Rorschach test." Our responses to her public persona can reveal our own deeply divided feelings about politics, gender roles, power, authenticity, and female ambition. In Thirty Ways of Looking at Hillary (HarperCollins), some of our most thoughtful and articulate female writers and journalists—including Susan Orlean, Judith Thurman, Kathryn Harrison, and Jane Kramer—tell us what they see when they look at the Democratic presidential hopeful and former First Lady. "I have yet to meet a woman who likes Hillary Clinton," declares Katie Roiphe, but as her fellow contributors make clear, the truth is not nearly so simple. Lorrie Moore writes beautifully about her complex ambivalence, while Katha Pollitt describes the outrage she feels every time she hears someone make a sexist remark about Hillary. As we read Daphne Merkin on the Clintons' marriage, Susan Cheever on Hillary's passion for Louisa May Alcott, Laura Kipnis on her fashion makeover, and Mimi Sheraton on her food preferences, we may find ourselves thinking that Hillary Clinton is not only a Rorschach test but a mirror for our country's political and private preoccupations and obsessions.