BELLA! Ms. Abzug Goes to Washington by Bella S. Abzug

BELLA! Ms. Abzug Goes to Washington

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Bella glissando, agitato, just forte enough in a diary of her days in Congress. ""The people are waiting for a new kind of leader. . . people like themselves. . . as human and emotional and agonized as they are. Like me."" Accordingly, this account of committee appointment fights and staff difficulties and procedural lessons and trips to the grassroots is laced with the pettiest of irritations and frustrations. In this genre, the ""human interest"" is not a frill, but inseparable from the political battles: and the Abzug idiom pulls the reader past issue-oriented questions like just what is her position on housing, the wage freeze, taxation, and so forth. Nothing can gainsay the thrill of hearing a public official cuss 'em out: the four-letter words are unimportant, it's the spirit that counts. Moreover, the narrative is disarmingly self-aware insofar as, for example, Abzug recognizes the basis and limits of her good relations with the House in-group and tells all. We were tempted to make this review entirely quotes -- it's a terrifically quotable book -- or to collate the comments on the women's movement, Israel, Lindsay, etc. But since everyone of any political disposition will want to grab the book, that seems unnecessary. A triumph of self-projection, and an inimitable chronicle of righteous assault, frank vanity, and perfectly calibrated impetuosity.

Pub Date: June 1st, 1972
Publisher: Saturday Review Press