In cultures all over the globe, sex and gender issues have been expressed in proverbs, the world's smallest literary genre. This fascinating book provides revealing insights into the female condition across centuries and continents, as recorded in thousands of vivid and earthy proverbs about women. Mineke Schipper analyses similarities, differences, and contradictions in the cultural norms about gender expressed in thousands of proverbs she has found from over 150 countries. Grouping the sayings into such categories as the female body, love, sex, childbirth, and female power, she finds shared patterns in ideas about women (and how men see them). Part cross-cultural study, part literary criticism, and part anthology, her book is a unique and intriguing resource to dip into again and again.