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The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World

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A debut from Forbes' third most powerful woman in the world, Melinda Gates, a timely and necessary call to action for women's empowerment. For the last twenty years, Melinda Gates has been on a mission. Her goal, as co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, has been to find solutions for people with the most urgent needs, wherever they live. Throughout this journey, A debut from Forbes' third most powerful woman in the world, Melinda Gates, a timely and necessary call to action for women's empowerment. For the last twenty years, Melinda Gates has been on a mission. Her goal, as co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, has been to find solutions for people with the most urgent needs, wherever they live. Throughout this journey, one thing has become increasingly clear to her: If you want to lift a society up, invest in women. In this candid and inspiring book, Gates traces her awakening to the link between women's empowerment and the health of societies. She shows some of the tremendous opportunities that exist right now to “turbo-charge" change. And she provides simple and effective ways each one of us can make a difference. Convinced that all women should be free to decide whether and when to have children, Gates took her first step onto the global stage to make a stand for family planning. That step launched her into further efforts: to ensure women everywhere have access to every kind of job; to encourage men around the globe to share equally in the burdens of household work; to advocate for paid family leave for everyone; to eliminate gender bias in all its forms. Throughout, Gates introduces us to her heroes in the movement towards equality, offers startling data, shares moving conversations she's had with women from all over the world—and shows how we can all get involved. A personal statement of passionate conviction, this book tells of Gates' journey from a partner working behind the scenes to one of the world's foremost advocates for women, driven by the belief that no one should be excluded, all lives have equal value, and gender equity is the lever that lifts everything.


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A debut from Forbes' third most powerful woman in the world, Melinda Gates, a timely and necessary call to action for women's empowerment. For the last twenty years, Melinda Gates has been on a mission. Her goal, as co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, has been to find solutions for people with the most urgent needs, wherever they live. Throughout this journey, A debut from Forbes' third most powerful woman in the world, Melinda Gates, a timely and necessary call to action for women's empowerment. For the last twenty years, Melinda Gates has been on a mission. Her goal, as co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, has been to find solutions for people with the most urgent needs, wherever they live. Throughout this journey, one thing has become increasingly clear to her: If you want to lift a society up, invest in women. In this candid and inspiring book, Gates traces her awakening to the link between women's empowerment and the health of societies. She shows some of the tremendous opportunities that exist right now to “turbo-charge" change. And she provides simple and effective ways each one of us can make a difference. Convinced that all women should be free to decide whether and when to have children, Gates took her first step onto the global stage to make a stand for family planning. That step launched her into further efforts: to ensure women everywhere have access to every kind of job; to encourage men around the globe to share equally in the burdens of household work; to advocate for paid family leave for everyone; to eliminate gender bias in all its forms. Throughout, Gates introduces us to her heroes in the movement towards equality, offers startling data, shares moving conversations she's had with women from all over the world—and shows how we can all get involved. A personal statement of passionate conviction, this book tells of Gates' journey from a partner working behind the scenes to one of the world's foremost advocates for women, driven by the belief that no one should be excluded, all lives have equal value, and gender equity is the lever that lifts everything.

30 review for The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World

  1. 5 out of 5

    Bill Gates

    I would say this even if I weren’t married to the author: The Moment of Lift is a terrific read. It is a wise, honest, and beautifully written book about how empowering women lifts up everyone. (None of that will be surprising to anyone who knows Melinda.) Although it took her about a year to write, in a way she has been working on it her whole life. The Moment of Lift is about the women who have inspired Melinda, starting with her own mother, through her colleagues at Microsoft, and continuing t I would say this even if I weren’t married to the author: The Moment of Lift is a terrific read. It is a wise, honest, and beautifully written book about how empowering women lifts up everyone. (None of that will be surprising to anyone who knows Melinda.) Although it took her about a year to write, in a way she has been working on it her whole life. The Moment of Lift is about the women who have inspired Melinda, starting with her own mother, through her colleagues at Microsoft, and continuing today with the amazing scientists, farmers, educators, and leaders she meets through her work with our foundation. Melinda opens up about her personal journey from private citizen to public advocate. You see how she pushed our foundation to focus more on women’s empowerment. She shares insights about our marriage, the path we took to become equals in our work, and how she has helped me grow as a father and husband. But to me, what is really impressive about the book is the way Melinda combines her mastery of data with her ability to tell powerful stories about individual women she has met. In an especially memorable passage about how she handles seeing people in desperate circumstances, she writes: “All of us have to let our hearts break; it’s the price of being present to someone who is suffering.” Your heart will break more than once when you read this book. But more often, you will be enlightened and inspired. In this free excerpt, Melinda writes about her final conversation with our friend Hans Rosling, a touching discussion about why it is so important to help mothers protect their children. I encourage you to pre-order the book now. Melinda will donate all the amounts she receives from this book to charity. Melinda is the most important person in my life: an amazing wife, mother, partner, and friend (and now accomplished author!). I am lucky that she has shared these insights with me for all these years, and delighted that she is now sharing them with the rest of the world too.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Suzanne

    If you invest in a girl or a woman, you’re investing in everyone else. I did not realise the depth of philanthropy that Melinda Gates is invested in. She is seriously invested in the rights of women and making women more empowered around the world. She works tirelessly within her organisation the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. I knew nothing of the work undertaken by this organisation, they certainly use their wealth for excellent means. Melinda travels around the world, stays with families If you invest in a girl or a woman, you’re investing in everyone else. I did not realise the depth of philanthropy that Melinda Gates is invested in. She is seriously invested in the rights of women and making women more empowered around the world. She works tirelessly within her organisation the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. I knew nothing of the work undertaken by this organisation, they certainly use their wealth for excellent means. Melinda travels around the world, stays with families, gets to know people at an intricate level and learns so much about what is happening to women at a basic level and is making progress. The simple right to contraception is one of the biggest themes here, Melinda is a Catholic and does not let this get in the way of her important work. There were some great quotes that I wish I had written down but did not as this was an audio read, skillfully narrated by the author. I love to listen to the author tell their story, it adds to my reading experience. As for this being a debut work, it blows me away. Child arranged marriage is discussed, and some of the stories are heartbreaking. The author approaches these tragic issues with humility and grace. I applaud the author for using her wisdom, knowledge and position to raise up the status of women from around the world. Even issues on not such a grand scale are faced here, such as the ratio of women to men performing household duties, and the task of driving the kids to school. She asked Bill to step up here and share the load, and he did so willingly, without noticing the disparity of the task. Because after all Melinda Gates is just a mum, like so many of us less known folk are. I took away from this that Melinda learns a lot from everything she undertake; whether they be life lessons or personal things from the scores of women she has had dealings with around the world. She makes mention of many women being her 'teacher'. I liked this. This was an interesting and thoughtful read which I recommend.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Mario the lone bookwolf

    Discriminating half of your population is a crime against humanity of such immense stupidity that hardly any words can be found to describe it. Next to the social and millionfold individual suffering, the scientific and economic damage is immense and countries lead by such deluded conservatives are immensely weakened. In a modern, equitable country simply everything would collapse if overnight a suddenly appearing dictatorship would disenfranchise all women. There is often the old belief in tale Discriminating half of your population is a crime against humanity of such immense stupidity that hardly any words can be found to describe it. Next to the social and millionfold individual suffering, the scientific and economic damage is immense and countries lead by such deluded conservatives are immensely weakened. In a modern, equitable country simply everything would collapse if overnight a suddenly appearing dictatorship would disenfranchise all women. There is often the old belief in talent and gender, but it is talent, hard work, and perseverance, independent of the gender. The argument of conservative sexists gets really ridiculous if one takes people born in bodies with genders they don´t identify with, among others all variants of LGBTs, as examples. In these cases, the vindications lose any logical and comprehensible semblance and can be seen as the pure shenanigans that they are. Cause it shows, that the human, person and character are the facts that count and not the body, genitals, hormones, self-concept or something. Instead, other arbitrary arguments such as height, weight or some kind of descendant of eugenics could be taken to show the absurdity. As seen in statistics, boys get outstripped and owned by girls as kids already in early childhood and adolescence in a fair society and in most western, democratic countries most problems with addiction, inability of adaption to new circumstances, stress resistance, let's say it, nearly every flaw, is a male problem. The only thing men are really good at is getting megalomaniac and destroying the planet. This is perfectly shown in the reports of sociologists and psychologists that compare kids in schools as following: Males never stop with stupid hierarchical and physical fights, have nearly all the learning problems, disturb the lessons, are more prone to any addictive substance and abuse it much more often, can´t multitask, aren´t as diligent as girls and have very low social skills. The only sexist argument that makes men look good are the higher achievements in the MINT areas. This is definitively just a consequence of sexism, telling little girls that evil maths, physics, etc. is too difficult for their cute little heads (jovial, condescending patting) and that they should do something less manly that fits to their lesser skills. If a girl is well educated by modern parents and the enthusiasm awakened at an early age, she wipes the floor with a boy with the same starting conditions. It´s not as if I am so schizophrenic to be a misandrist, but there are so many negative aspects of my gender that one could really point at any past, actual or future problem and show that it is purely manmade. We are tribal, archaic, easy to manipulate, violent, hateful and totally asocial and totally ruthless regarding the consequences of our actions. Be it wars in the past or the economic mayhem in the present, I simply don´t believe that women in power would act so stupid, against the interest of humanity and especially against the interest of their own children. And for what do manly men do this stuff? Money and power to get even hairier chests, larger harems and more ultimate powaaaa, emperor Palpatine style. I know that I have all those tendencies inside myself and can say that is a daily struggle not to be a ...., because it is the easy, fast and comfortable way to be an egoistic, manipulative, power-hungry, evil, hateful, cold, career-obsessed and brutal tyrant and demagogue instead of helping others, being social, unselfish, self- sacrificing, listening, caring and a better human. A good education has to begin with the youngest boys, cause as soon as a certain age is reached, the elder ones are lost trough indoctrination with BS and unable to change at a terrifyingly young age and would rather kill or die than to adapt to better alternatives. Of course, there are exceptions, but they are rare and the funny thing is that the most successful and rich man go the way of hard work, are often introverts, do feminine things like reading and beeing immune to stupid group dynamics that normally steal the time to do meaningful work. The danger of inequality for the whole state can be seen in history with multiple examples since the beginning of historiography. A population that is divided and not emancipated has less defensive, production and offensive capabilities, is more susceptible to agitators from enemy states who simply have to spread the facts about the grievances and has to keep its own population monitored by a terror secret police to keep it from uprising. An army can have shieldmaidens that are more dangerous than any man, because they won´t fear death just because of the option to go to Valhalla, but because they will die to defend their children, something man probably won´t do in each case or the army, as always in history, simply sucks because it is a mixture of conscripted and slave soldiers, mercenaries and incompetent officers and general staff. Slavery is another prime example of how a state may accumulate immense wealth as long as the times are primitive, but as soon as industrialization sets in, it becomes an immense inner danger. Oppression is just a softer kind of slavery without direct possession certificates and many once-mighty empires had this self-destruction button integrated into their system, with examples as the Qing dynasty, the Romans, the Umayyad dynasty, the British empire, the Yuan dynasty, the Caliphate, etc. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of.... If one builds his society and a stupid model, one should not wonder if his global empire perishes. If any of those states would have been a democracy, the rest of the world would have been doomed, because while the others would have kept fighting with each other and against the behemoth, the inner stability would have been the key to success in the path to world domination. Each high developed country depends on emancipation and justice, as seen on statistics on the best places to live. A limitation of the rights and possibilities of half of the population is a sign of so massive wretchedness and madness at the same time because it causes immense harm and reduces competitiveness. As if nothing could be learned out of the many deterrent examples out of the past and actual failing states that castrate themselves by overestimating their primary sexual characteristics. A wiki walk can be as refreshing to the mind as a walk through nature in this completely overrated real-life outside books: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Women%2... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gender_... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emancip... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feminism https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexism https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Violenc... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feminiz... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Employm... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Effects... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stereot... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intra-h... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unpaid_... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valuati... Categories https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Categor... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Categor... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Categor... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Categor... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...

  4. 4 out of 5

    Ariel

    In the crazy way life sometimes goes these days I got to interview Melinda Gates about her new book. I'm really excited for you to all see it when it comes out (I think in January!). This book opened my eyes to a lot of things I just wasn't facing or thinking about but more than anything, learning about Bill and Melinda's lives, and their dedication to helping others, really made me think a lot about how we help other people and how much of a priority we should put on that.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Cristina Monica

    You help women, you help everyone. Melinda Gates discovered that by doing work for her and her husband's foundation that seeks to improve the world and by listening to the stories of many women around the world. Improve the conditions of women, invest in their education, eliminate the stigma that follows them, encourage them to stand up for themselves and for each other... Do all of these things and one day we might completely eliminate wars. If this seems like a far-fetched statement to you, re You help women, you help everyone. Melinda Gates discovered that by doing work for her and her husband's foundation that seeks to improve the world and by listening to the stories of many women around the world. Improve the conditions of women, invest in their education, eliminate the stigma that follows them, encourage them to stand up for themselves and for each other... Do all of these things and one day we might completely eliminate wars. If this seems like a far-fetched statement to you, read this book. I especially recommend you read this book if you don't believe in equality between sexes and seeing women in positions of power. Because you need a reality check. You need to open your eyes wide and let the truth submerge you.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Liz

    I’m embarrassed to say this is another book I wouldn’t have read except for my book club. And I would have missed out. The moment of lift is that moment a rocket or plane takes off and leaves the ground. It’s also a moment of grace. As Gates uses the term, it combines those two definitions. It’s the moment that groups of women find ways to overcome their problems, whether it be keeping girls in school, delaying marriage for girls, providing contraceptives in isolated areas or preventing HIV in s I’m embarrassed to say this is another book I wouldn’t have read except for my book club. And I would have missed out. The moment of lift is that moment a rocket or plane takes off and leaves the ground. It’s also a moment of grace. As Gates uses the term, it combines those two definitions. It’s the moment that groups of women find ways to overcome their problems, whether it be keeping girls in school, delaying marriage for girls, providing contraceptives in isolated areas or preventing HIV in sex workers. Gates consistently shows that it’s the women coming together who find the solutions, not the foundation providing the answers. In addition to the examples cited, I also appreciated that Gates tells us about her own evolution to become a more outspoken person. She initially did not see herself as a feminist. But she now counts herself as one, and defines being a feminist as someone that believes every woman should be able to use their voice and realize their potential. This is going to make for a fascinating discussion.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Kaloyana

    For this book I need to make a whole new shelf called "abandoned with hatred and anger". If you haven't heard that people and children die in Africa because of poverty, hunger no health care etc, and if you haven't heard that people in poor African countries have many children, who die under age of five, and you have no idea that in Africa they had no education, and you haven't heard about inexplicably rich people form western world, known as philanthropists, who go there and try to help those po For this book I need to make a whole new shelf called "abandoned with hatred and anger". If you haven't heard that people and children die in Africa because of poverty, hunger no health care etc, and if you haven't heard that people in poor African countries have many children, who die under age of five, and you have no idea that in Africa they had no education, and you haven't heard about inexplicably rich people form western world, known as philanthropists, who go there and try to help those poor people, by donating money, talking to them, making programs about birth control etc, this book is for you. Also, if you have no idea how to use Google search, this book might give you all the numbers in the statistic in countries where all those things are happening. Youl'll get a lot of numbers, trust me on that. I also wonder why no one didn't consider telling Mrs. Gates that most of her readers probably know what poverty is, what doest it cause to people, its affects on human life and how when you are poor the only thing you can think of is surviving and you absolutely cannot contribute to your society. So I expected Melinda Gates to tell us her life story and her personal experience, which she almost did, but was somehow boring and predictable and nothing normal reader haven't heard. Like the story of this woman in Africa, Rwanda, I guess, who asked Mrs. Gates to take her own baby, but Melinda told her, she already has three kids of her own, so better teach her how not to have more children. And she asks if we can imagine, or something similar, that this African woman prefers to leave her child for better future than to have it with her. Sure I do, also like most of the people. Tell me something I don't know, or cannot Google the numbers behind. Somehow this book feels shallow, not convincing, boring. Melinda's idea that giving women power and this will do miracles (if they can plan their pregnancies and can marry who the want) is naiive and there is contradiction, because why should someone had to give anyone anything, if we try to be equal. So far I got, maybe the book gets better, but I cannot stand it one more minute. I expected story and personal experience of women of power and how you can make yourself useful for your society, but I got African children again, vaccines and contraceptives.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Elyse Walters

    Ebook: own. Audiobook: library overdrive. Paul, and I both enjoyed listening to Melinda Gates—( while hiking and lounging in the yard). I loved learning about Melinda’s personal history - Her personal life stories and the many stories of women around the world. Melinda Gates - ( leading by example), has written a brilliant ‘call-to-arms’ that describes injustices in the world.....gender inequality for women - brutal disadvantages in the developing counties - poverty - sexual mutilation, abuse, h Ebook: own. Audiobook: library overdrive. Paul, and I both enjoyed listening to Melinda Gates—( while hiking and lounging in the yard). I loved learning about Melinda’s personal history - Her personal life stories and the many stories of women around the world. Melinda Gates - ( leading by example), has written a brilliant ‘call-to-arms’ that describes injustices in the world.....gender inequality for women - brutal disadvantages in the developing counties - poverty - sexual mutilation, abuse, hope, desperation, family planning, birth control, other obstacles and debilitating struggles underprivileged women deal with. Melinda’s life work is about empowering woman....educating them. She’s passionate and persuasive.... GENDER EQUALITY *LIFTS* EVERYONE! An interesting- important - timely - moving - inspiring contributing book .....looking at varied cultures & communities .....supporting reform on all levels. I was reminded of the book “Half The Sky”....Turning oppression into opportunity for women worldwide, by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl Wudunn Wonderful as an Audiobook... Terrific as the printed book. There are some powerful excerpts worth re-reading. I’m impressed with how down to earth, likable, and articulate, Melinda Gates is.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Donna Hines

    A woman on a mission to save other women from despair, poverty, and the ills that effect every aspect of society today. It's a man's world and nothing has changed. Yet Melinda Gates is determined to weave a new pattern in this bundle of yarn one that will help those around the world get the help they deserve through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Empowerment! Validation! Assurances of a better life! Sounds so cozy but can it be accomplished and I wonder can we start at home before going abr A woman on a mission to save other women from despair, poverty, and the ills that effect every aspect of society today. It's a man's world and nothing has changed. Yet Melinda Gates is determined to weave a new pattern in this bundle of yarn one that will help those around the world get the help they deserve through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Empowerment! Validation! Assurances of a better life! Sounds so cozy but can it be accomplished and I wonder can we start at home before going abroad? Look I have not had the white picket fence dream fulfilled. I married a man I thought would love, honor, obey but instead I got a devil in disguise. After being left homeless, bankrupt, without income assets or savings I had to pick myself up, dust off, and try again. So I did but not without helping others first. As a 20 yr volunteer with over 13 nonprofits in my community I seen first hand the power to inspire, transform, and honor those who feel they have lost all hope. I've been both a recipient and a volunteer especially with regards to food insecurities. In fact this past year while passing out 10,ooo frozen turkeys my back went out, pinched on my nerve, and legs became temp paralyzed yet I continued to work as people need us. I watched people come up to me with a sad look in their eyes one you could read on their face and when I said,"It's ok, I 'm also below poverty with 3 kids from abusive marriage" they welled up and tears flowed. It's ok to know that they are not alone and in need of assistance. I was also on the front line in attending the walk for homeless women in which several of the women were escaping abuse. Many found themselves in situations they couldn't escape including mounting medical bills from illnesses they simply couldn't afford. We're all just one paycheck away. I've been on the front line at the food banks and job centers seeking better ways . Hell I graduated with a dual masters and gave up my career to raise my 3 kids (oldest son born med disabled with Vater Syndrome requiring round the clock care) but it wasn't rewarded with compensation for lost wages but rather a statement of 'she's just a mom' and 'get a job' after giving up my career for my spouses. Please can we address child care in America. Can we address compensation for lost wages as you've mentioned our work is free but it's still work. Raising a family and taking care of a household is WORK! It's unpaid labor yet there's no monetary value in exchange for the 24-7 duties many women perform daily. Might I add women have a right to have children and those who have different circumstances should have a right to abort if they choose. Why are we continuously telling women how to live? By the way I've also been a counselor free of charge helping women heal from NPD and DV on my FB page,"The Lost Self Life After Narcissism" so yes it's a global issue with violence. I absolutely love what I do and an award was never the end result for years of volunteering but I'm so honored to have received the Points of Light Award for my service. So I understand the movement here, the motivation, the inspiration I truly do! From one viewpoint I can join hands with you on this notion of feminism because as someone who fought to just survive I get it! What I'm concerned about is this travelling to far off third world countries with all the riches of the marriage to help others when we have dire needs here at home. As a product of a broken civil legal system in dealing with malignant narcissist we need the help here before going outside of our country. My hope is that women and children no longer have to live in fear , in poverty, in abusive situations yet I know there's much more behind closed doors. I lived as a prisoner in my own home while married to a man that could sway from one persona to another known as Jekyll and Hyde. He was a true chameleon able to adapt to any change in environment while going undetected. This is the scary part as woman's voices are being silenced all around the world to violence. It's not just in one centralized spot it's a worldwide epidemic in which if caught it's a resignation, a slap on the wrist, and back at it. Mine violated his PFA , arrest for ICC violation, 3 month probation, alcohol and drug treatment, anger management, warrant for failure to pay and appear 15 k arrearages yet still had parental rights with documented police reports of abuse and removal from our home and yes I had every document to show proof including arrest reports, pics of abuse, transfer of hidden funds, etc. It didn't matter -- not believable or credible with every legal document shown during divorce proceedings! As you may have noticed our country is now experiencing the same insanity by the very same type of toxicity. I wish I could say good luck but it takes an act of Congress to receive change. When you file 15 exceptions from lies and the other person shows up and receives everything based on simply money, power, connections, and gender there's something wrong. We need to end the preferential treatment, the corruption, the pay to play schemes and start treating women fairly. If this continues women and children are in jeopardy of losing everything without even having a say. There's no legal aid available. There's no safety net. There's a brick wall! Public assistance over 2 yr wait lists. Housing the same. No alimony nor child support for over a year while living off credit. You see I'm all for helping everyone but can we please begin right here at home! We need all the help we can get. Survivor of NPD and DV! Thank you!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Moonkiszt

    The Moment of Lift I cannot say enough good things about this book. She is saying, advocating and calling to action with words that are persuasive to me and are hitting me right in the heart. Read this book.. She covers many of the ways women and underprivileged groups are pushed down throughout the world (throughout the ages!) and approaches that have been taken in the past and how the paths to the end goals have changed, because understanding of the needs and obstacles has increased. She calls The Moment of Lift I cannot say enough good things about this book. She is saying, advocating and calling to action with words that are persuasive to me and are hitting me right in the heart. Read this book.. She covers many of the ways women and underprivileged groups are pushed down throughout the world (throughout the ages!) and approaches that have been taken in the past and how the paths to the end goals have changed, because understanding of the needs and obstacles has increased. She calls for more of that kind of thinking – being flexible and willing to change your mind in order to accomplish the goal: equality for all humans of every stripe. When I picked this book up, I had a dare in mind, not overtly, just as a jaded person does: Ok, Lady of a Billionaire. Tell me how to change the world from your Towers in the Clouds. Tell me how to fix stuff about which you know nothing. I dare you. I couldn’t have been further from the truth. There are more quotes from this book that could be pulled out – but this is one of her key points as she focuses on empowering women – for those of you who roll your eyes at feminist themes or snap the book shut at “empowering women”. She wants equality for all, not women over men, not women better than men. She wants the same rights, dreams and expectations available for all humans, regardless of gender, race, geography or belief systems (although all those contribute to the inequalities humans routinely, consistently experience). This quote shows her thinking on this: that it is the outsiders that we trample, and that most outside of the outsiders are women – poor, isolated, unsupported women. “Anyone can be made to feel like an outsider. It’s up to the people who have the power to exclude. Often it’s on the basis of race. Depending on a culture’s fears and biases, Jews can be treated as outsiders. Muslims can be treated as outsiders. Christians can be treated as outsiders. The poor are always outsiders. The sick are often outsiders. People with disabilities can be treated as outsiders. Members of the LGBTQ community can be treated as outsiders. Immigrants are almost always outsiders. And in most every society, women can be made to feel like outsiders—even in their own homes. Overcoming the need to create outsiders is our greatest challenge as human beings. It is the key to ending deep inequality. We stigmatize and send to the margins people who trigger in us the feelings we want to avoid. This is why there are so many old and weak and sick and poor people on the margins of society. We tend to push out the people who have qualities we’re most afraid we will find in ourselves—and sometimes we falsely ascribe qualities we disown to certain groups, then push those groups out as a way of denying those traits in ourselves. This is what drives dominant groups to push different racial and religious groups to the margins. And we’re often not honest about what’s happening. If we’re on the inside and see someone on the outside, we often say to ourselves, “I’m not in that situation because I’m different. But that’s just pride talking. We could easily be that person. We have all things inside us. We just don’t like to confess what we have in common with outsiders because it’s too humbling. It suggests that maybe success and failure aren’t entirely fair. And if you know you got the better deal, then you have to be humble, and it hurts to give up your sense of superiority and say, “I’m no better than others.” So instead we invent excuses for our need to exclude. We say it’s about merit or tradition when it’s really just protecting our privilege and our pride.” ― Melinda Gates, The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World Read this book. Let’s change our world by recognizing the ways we are perpetuating inequalities in our personal lives, and get to the business of changing our minds and actions. Again, I say: Read this book.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Whitney

    Overall: I loved this book and found it very inspiring. A very important read that touches on many key global health issues. The overall message of this book can be summarized as: When we lift up women and girls everywhere, it benefits us all. 4+/5 or 8/10 Highly recommend this to everyone but be warned to any that are sensitive to topics such as: rape, domestic violence, religious issues and contraception, child brides, and the sex trade. Summary: Melinda Gates has actively been involved in vari Overall: I loved this book and found it very inspiring. A very important read that touches on many key global health issues. The overall message of this book can be summarized as: When we lift up women and girls everywhere, it benefits us all. 4+/5 or 8/10 Highly recommend this to everyone but be warned to any that are sensitive to topics such as: rape, domestic violence, religious issues and contraception, child brides, and the sex trade. Summary: Melinda Gates has actively been involved in various types of global health and charity work around the world for the past twenty years. This book is a compilation of her experiences and what she has learned. Each chapter is focused on an important global health issue such as contraception, domestic violence, child brides, work place equality, etc. She ties in knowledge, research, stories from incredible women, and her own experiences beautifully to each chapter. Very heavy topics but an overall uplifting and positive tons. The Good: This book is well written and you can really feel the author’s passion throughout the entirety. She discusses some very heavy topics but somehow gives it an overall positive tone of hope. I loved the blending of her own experiences and stories from the women she has met with these complicated issues. Not only did I learn a ton from reading this but also was truly inspired with every chapter. There are lots of very thoughtful and beautifully written passages. “For all of history, women and girls have been relegated to the margins, denied an equal chance to learn, lead, earn, thrive, and rise. Even today, there is nowhere on earth where women have achieved true equality…Being a feminist means believing that every woman should be able to use her voice and pursue her potential, and that women and men should all work together to take down the barriers and end the biases that sill hold women back.” The Bad: A bit preachy at times and also some very heavy topics and sad stories. Makes you want to change the world but also a bit depressing because most of us don’t have billions of dollars and our own foundations. I would have liked more practical discussions of how to make a positive change on some of these topics. Despite these feelings at times though, the message is simple and everyone can make a difference. Favorite Quotes: “If you want to lift up humanity, empower women. It is the most comprehensive, pervasive, high-leverage investment you can make in human beings.” “I’ve never held the view that women are better than men, or that the best way to improve the world is for women to gain more power than men…. When a culture of dominance is broken, it activates power in all of us.” “When people become better at seeing themselves in the lives of others, feeling others' suffering and easing their pain, then life in that community gets better. In many cases, we have more empathy for each other today than the people did who set the practices and traditions we now live with. So the purpose of conversations about accepted practices is to take out the old bias and add in empathy. Empathy is not the only force needed to ease suffering; we need science as well. But empathy helps end our bias about who deserves the benefits of science. "Love is the most powerful and underused force for change in the world. ... For me, love is the effort to help others flourish — and it often begins with lifting up a person's self image." Tradition without discussion kills moral progress. If you're handed a tradition and decide not to talk about it--just do it--then you're letting people from the past tell you what to do. It kills the chance to see the blind spots in the tradition--and moral blind spots always take the form of excluding others and ignoring their pain. Diversity is the best way to defend equality. If people from diverse groups are not making those decisions, the burdens and benefits of society will be divided unequally and unfairly — with the people writing the rules ensuring themselves a greater share of the benefits and a lesser share of the burdens of any society. If you are not brought in, you get sold out." "Many successful social movements are driven by the same combination — strong activism and the ability to take pain without passing it on. Anyone who can combine those two, finds a voice with moral force." “Adults try to create outsiders, too. In fact, we get better at it. And most of us fall into one of the same three groups: the people who try to create outsiders, the people who are made to feel like outsiders, and the people who stand by and don't stop it. ... Every society says its outsiders are the problem. But the outsiders are not the problem; the urge to create outsiders is the problem. Overcoming that urge is our greatest challenge and our greatest promise. It will take courage and insight, because the people we push to the margins are the ones who trigger in us the feelings we're afraid of.” "It's especially galling that some of the people who want to cut funding for contraception cite morality. In my view, there is no morality without empathy, and there is certainly no empathy in this policy. Morality is loving your neighbor as yourself, which comes from seeing your neighbor as yourself, which means trying to ease your neighbors burdens — not add to them."

  12. 5 out of 5

    Cathrine ☯️

    5 ✈️ ✈️ ✈️ ✈️ ✈️ I’d say the moment of lift begins as soon as you finish this book. I don’t think I would have read it but the audio appealed to me so that’s how it got under my reading skin. It delivers greatly in a thoughtful, intelligent, positive, and emotional telling in Melinda’s own upbeat voice. I’ve been thinking how can I endorse it; how to convey to you and the author what I thought and how it impacted me—why you should read it. Here it is: Melinda Gates for President. I mean it.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Connie G

    Melinda Gates and her husband, Bill Gates, are co-founders of the Gates Foundation which works to improve health and reduce poverty in developing countries. They have supplied vaccines and birth control, and worked to keep girls in school. They have also partnered with organizations in developing countries to prevent child brides. The foundation has been helping farmers by providing better varieties of seeds and other items needed for farming. Melinda emphasizes that it's important to involve th Melinda Gates and her husband, Bill Gates, are co-founders of the Gates Foundation which works to improve health and reduce poverty in developing countries. They have supplied vaccines and birth control, and worked to keep girls in school. They have also partnered with organizations in developing countries to prevent child brides. The foundation has been helping farmers by providing better varieties of seeds and other items needed for farming. Melinda emphasizes that it's important to involve the women in discussions since they do much of the farming and most of the cooking. Melinda has traveled all over the world, listening to people's heartbreaking stories in remote areas with extreme poverty, and little access to health care and education. Other stories are about amazing people who have built schools and changed cultures. She has shared these stories to show how changes can lift women up, which results in lifting their families up. Melinda also directs the Pivotal Ventures, an investment company that gives opportunities to disadvantaged people in the United States. She also writes about gender equality in marriages and the workplace. With warmth and humor she uses examples from her own life and marriage to Bill. I admire billionaires Bill and Melinda Gates, as well as Warren Buffett, who are using their time and their fortunes to help others through the Gates Foundation. This inspiring book also makes me appreciate all the unnamed people who have become midwives, gone door to door with vaccines, encouraged girls in school, and changed cultural attitudes.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Trish

    Melinda Gates has a famous name and job, but who knows what she actually does? Running a foundation with assets exceeding that of many countries must carry enormous stresses, particularly for people who understand that injecting cash into a problem may actually make the problem grow. What courage it must take just to try. This had to have been a hard book to write, what with a crushing schedule, children, and weighty responsibilities, to say nothing of the disparate and discrete problems of women Melinda Gates has a famous name and job, but who knows what she actually does? Running a foundation with assets exceeding that of many countries must carry enormous stresses, particularly for people who understand that injecting cash into a problem may actually make the problem grow. What courage it must take just to try. This had to have been a hard book to write, what with a crushing schedule, children, and weighty responsibilities, to say nothing of the disparate and discrete problems of women on different continents. I am not saying there aren’t similarities among women’s experiences the world over; I’m saying that, perhaps for the purposes of this book, on each continent Gates honed in on a different critical problem among women that she might be able to affect. In Africa, she showed us women responsible for field work and cultivation. In South Asia, we look at sex workers. In America, it was education. In every country the message was about empowerment and equality. Gates sounds tentative and naïve to begin which may help her audience connect with her experience. But she has some insights sprinkled all the way along as we follow her progress from Catholic-school Texan to one of the few female programmers at a gung-ho win-at-any-cost Microsoft. Two early insights: “I soon saw that if we are going to take our place as equals with men, it won’t come from winning our rights one by one or step by step; we’ll win our rights in waves as we become empowered…If you want to lift up humanity, empower women.”Gates wonders how she could have missed these two insights early in her foundation work, and I did, too, considering this was something Hillary Clinton hammered pretty hard during her years as First Lady and Secretary of State. Both Gates and Clinton had international reach and the massive resources to understand exactly where the latch was to unleash potential and creativity. Why Gates never mentions Clinton is a mystery, unless she is trying assiduously to avoid any political fallout. That can't be right, though, as Gates is pretty fearless weighing in on religious issues. When speaking of her Catholicism and her support for birth control, that is, the notion that women must be able to control their own births, Gates says that religion and birth control should not be incompatible. She feels on strong moral ground and welcomes guidance from priests, nuns, and laypeople but “ultimately moral questions are personal questions. Majorities don’t matter on issues of conscience.” Drop mike. My hero. She gives me language to speak to critics who wish to roll back women’s right to choose. It’s not an easy decision but it is a woman’s decision. Otherwise, Christian critics, why did God give this ability to women alone? Melinda shares some empowerment struggles of her own—in a company and in a household with Bill Gates. She was intimidated, but can you blame her? With support from Bill and from colleagues and friends, she managed to develop her innate ability to cooperate and thereby manage high-performing teams, both at the company and later at the foundation. Later, Gates asks how does disrespect for women grow within a child suckling at his mother’s breast? Gates places the blame squarely on religion: “Disrespect for women grows when religions are dominated by men.” That is a brave stance, the articulation of which I am grateful. I also came to that conclusion, and it felt a lonely one. I wondered how my moral grounding felt so strong when I learned what I had in the Catholic tradition also. Perhaps our reactions are something along the lines of the questioning, probing Jesuitical tradition? “Bias against women is perhaps humanity’s oldest prejudice, and not only are religions our oldest institutions, but they change more slowly and grudgingly than all the others—which means they hold on to their biases and blind spots longer.”When she is wrapping up, Gates shares something that will help all of us in this country as we struggle through the next period, trying to avoid the dangers of political and ideological attacks (from within!) on our constitution and on our future development and ability to face the existential dangers of climate change. She gives examples of women who have brought peace to warring factions in their country and says ”Many social movements are driven by the same combination—strong activism and the ability to take pain without passing it on. Anyone who can combine those two finds a voice with a moral force.” This, I submit, could be the very key to unlocking the potential of our future. Conservatives complain relentlessly about the yapping left. Essentially, I agree. We have to stop going to the least common denominator. Women! stand up and show them how to both nurture and progress. Democrats and Republicans, we have way more in common as women than we have differences as political animals. And we have as much at stake. Those who are already empowered can make decisions on their own, so aren’t intimidated by women who may occasionally disagree. Isn't this how we learn? Those who seek empowerment can find it with other women, so join us. I definitely think there is room to work together to achieve something we haven’t yet managed here in the U.S. and need badly: coherence. Gates’ last point is one close to the hearts of every mother, teacher, groundbreaker: “Every society says its outsiders are the problem. But outsiders are not the problem; the urge to create outsiders is the problem. Overcoming that urge is our greatest challenge and our greatest promise.The Left is in agreement with the Right that every member of society must contribute something. No one wants to think they do not contribute. It is up to us to find ways for everyone to do so. And to those who insist they “got where they did by themselves,” well, go live by yourself. Praise your great wealth by looking in the mirror. Gates has written a thought-provoking and generous book, sharing much of what she has been given.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Candie

    I really loved this book. It is a book that tells the stories of women around the world and their struggles, and the things that have been done or need to be done to help empower them and lift them up. When women are more empowered, everybody benefits. So heartbreaking and encouraging to read these brave women's stories and see the changes that can happen. It makes me so angry how women all over the world are treated and how it is looked at as okay because it is the way it has always been. Melin I really loved this book. It is a book that tells the stories of women around the world and their struggles, and the things that have been done or need to be done to help empower them and lift them up. When women are more empowered, everybody benefits. So heartbreaking and encouraging to read these brave women's stories and see the changes that can happen. It makes me so angry how women all over the world are treated and how it is looked at as okay because it is the way it has always been. Melinda Gates is very inspiring. I really enjoyed her writing style. She has done and continues to do so many wonderful things to help empower women around the world. She is so down to earth, passionate, caring and empathetic towards people. She really approaches change from a point of empathy and by trying to understand the culture and why certain practices are done in the first place instead of just saying they are wrong and need to be changed. People do not like to be judged and will often fight back if they feel that they are. She is very outspoken in her opinions. She doesn't try to push it on people, but she also doesn't let someone else's difference of opinion hold her back from communicating hers. I admire her strength. I feel like some people may say that there was too much talk about her personal life and history added in. She did talk about it a lot and I felt like it sometimes went a bit off topic but I actually really liked reading it anyway. I love both Bill and Melinda and I enjoyed reading about all aspects of their life. If their was one couple in the whole world whom I could sit down and have dinner with it would definitely be Bill and Melinda Gates. "When women hear our own voices in another woman's story, our courage grows, and one voice can become a chorus. When it's "he said/she said," the woman can't win. But when it's "he said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said," transparency has a chance, and light can flood the places where abusive behaviour thrives." I definitely recommend this book!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Kristy K

    This book is truly about women empowerment. Gates acknowledges her own privilege and keeps the focus on the women that are often left in the margins. It is both inspirational and heartbreaking. I am so glad that there are people like Melinda Gates who make it their life’s work to help improve the life of the countless millions who’s voices are rarely heard. One thing I love about this book is that Gates doesn’t paint herself as the savior. The women she talks about are the real heroes in their o This book is truly about women empowerment. Gates acknowledges her own privilege and keeps the focus on the women that are often left in the margins. It is both inspirational and heartbreaking. I am so glad that there are people like Melinda Gates who make it their life’s work to help improve the life of the countless millions who’s voices are rarely heard. One thing I love about this book is that Gates doesn’t paint herself as the savior. The women she talks about are the real heroes in their own lives and the world. I’m in awe of their strength and love. There were times where I felt a little overwhelmed because there is so much injustice and hurt in the world and it’s hard to see how it will ever end. But as I said, this book is also inspirational. These women preserve and withstand everything life throws at them and it gives you hope that maybe their daughters or granddaughters will see the fruit of their labor.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    A thought-provoking and inspiring book full of touching stories of women from around the world. SUMMARY Melinda Gates of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation authors this necessary call to action for women’s empowerment. For the past twenty years, Gates has been finding solutions to lift people out of poverty. Through her travels she has come to realized that to really lift a society up, you must invest in its women. She is driven by the belief that no one should be excluded, all lives have equa A thought-provoking and inspiring book full of touching stories of women from around the world. SUMMARY Melinda Gates of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation authors this necessary call to action for women’s empowerment. For the past twenty years, Gates has been finding solutions to lift people out of poverty. Through her travels she has come to realized that to really lift a society up, you must invest in its women. She is driven by the belief that no one should be excluded, all lives have equal value, and gender equity is the lever that lifts everything. “It’s the sign of a backward society—or a society moving backward—when decision are made for women by men.” REVIEW What makes The MOMENT of LIFT different from other women’s empowerment books is the author and her experiences. Melinda Gates’s foundation work has taken her around the world meeting people from every culture and background. She shares stories from farmers, teachers, sex workers, scientists and leaders. She meets people in their homes, schools and communities and listens to their issues. She tells us moving stories that hold women down: child marriage, family planning, health care, violence against women and gender inequality in the workforce. Gates show us example of how women found their voice on these issues and stood together with others to make a difference. Gates’s writing is touching and her stories are heartbreaking. She has gracefully intertwined these stories with data, and her opinions resulting from her experiences. I love how she even opens up and shares stories of her own upbringing, her life with Bill, and her experiences in the workforce. It’s all very personal and very real and you may even want to read this book more than once. A must read! “Many successful social movements are driven by the same combination—strong activism and the ability to take pain without passing it on. Anyone who can combine these two, finds a voice with moral force.” Publisher Flatiron Books Published April 23, 2019 Narrated Melinda Gates Review www.bluestockingreviews.com

  18. 5 out of 5

    Greta

    Inequality, child marriage, cutting, contraception, abuse and a lack of education. How to evoke change in developing countries. “If you want to lift up humanity, empower women. It is the most comprehensive, pervasive, high-leverage investment you can make in human beings.” I have to say that I didn‘t knew about the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, until a few month ago, when I saw a TED Talk with Bill. "The next outbreak? We‘re not ready". He talked about the danger of a pandemic hitting us - the Inequality, child marriage, cutting, contraception, abuse and a lack of education. How to evoke change in developing countries. “If you want to lift up humanity, empower women. It is the most comprehensive, pervasive, high-leverage investment you can make in human beings.” I have to say that I didn‘t knew about the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, until a few month ago, when I saw a TED Talk with Bill. "The next outbreak? We‘re not ready". He talked about the danger of a pandemic hitting us - the talk is from 2015. That‘s how I first looked into the foundation, Melinda Gates, and their outstanding work in philantrophy, particularly in developing countries. This is an extremely educational, eye opening and empowering book, in which Melinda shares the philosophy behind her work. She guides us through her missions and explorations in several developing countries and tells about her experiences and conversations all over the world, teaching her about the problems and circumstances particularly woman experience. Additionally you learn about her own biography and relationships, naturally influencing her motives and believes. “Every society says its outsiders are the problem. But the outsiders are not the problem; the urge to create outsiders is the problem" When I first opened this book I had no clear idea what to expect, but just started on the first page with an open mind. Melinda strongly believes that in order to effect change, a change in culture is necessary, which can only be accomplished by empowering woman. Not primarily to help the woman as an individual, but to help their entire families, villages, cities, countries, to secure humanity. She realizes that in order to help, one most understand how the people think first, to be able to not just treat symptoms but identify the cause of problems. Melinda reflects very well on herself and her work. She is well aware of her position as a white billionaire and how that can lead to wrong perceptions of her work. She represents the opposite of arrogance and doesn‘t aim to force her own believes on other cultures, she is not looking for easy fixes but wants to help empower societies to help themselves. Additionally she reflects on her catholic believes and how that doesn‘t contradict her advocacy of contraception or the abandonment of traditional family hierarchies. I have a very clear idea about their foundation now, what it stands for and learned a lot about developing countries on the way. Very educational, enlightening and uplifting!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Carol (Bookaria)

    This book explores how educating and empowering women brings significant and positive change in communities around the world. Melinda Gates describes her experiences and challenges but also the profound fulfillment that working in the foundation has brought to her life. I think this work is important and, even though, some of the stories were deeply sad we should still listen and explore how we can help from wherever we stand. An inspiring and enlightening read.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Claudia

    This book has some powerful and compelling stories of women around the world desperately trying not only to survive but to provide a better life for their children against insurmountable odds. It also does a good job of highlighting some of the work of the Gates foundation, as well, as finding common ground with the work of Rosling and Brene Brown. Nonetheless, I struggle with the tone and voice of this book. Why? It’s preachy. I can totally get behind the premise of this book. If we want to chan This book has some powerful and compelling stories of women around the world desperately trying not only to survive but to provide a better life for their children against insurmountable odds. It also does a good job of highlighting some of the work of the Gates foundation, as well, as finding common ground with the work of Rosling and Brene Brown. Nonetheless, I struggle with the tone and voice of this book. Why? It’s preachy. I can totally get behind the premise of this book. If we want to change the world, we need to lift women up from poverty; nonetheless, many of Melinda’s premises are colored by her white American upper class lenses. In one hand, she speaks of understanding and compassion for cultural differences until it does no longer suit her agenda and BAM! Off with our heads! It’s OK, Melinda, Bill still loves you.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Sophia

    i listened to this on audio, which was fine, but melinda gates narrates like she's giving a keynote instead of like she's reading a personal memoir lmao. this is an easily digestible take on feminism and philanthropy from a wealthy, white woman who knows she's wealthy and white. it's driven by data, facts, research, with personal anecdotes and travel experiences to fill out the rest of the memoir. it's not an emotional read, but it's an informative read. although we need to eat the rich, i do th i listened to this on audio, which was fine, but melinda gates narrates like she's giving a keynote instead of like she's reading a personal memoir lmao. this is an easily digestible take on feminism and philanthropy from a wealthy, white woman who knows she's wealthy and white. it's driven by data, facts, research, with personal anecdotes and travel experiences to fill out the rest of the memoir. it's not an emotional read, but it's an informative read. although we need to eat the rich, i do think melinda gates (and bill) have good intentions, work hard, believe in the work that they do, and have a good dose of humility. but also sis... if ur using so much money on this philanthropic work but not questioning how u got to amass such wealth in the first place and whether that's ethical...

  22. 4 out of 5

    Ying Ying

    The more I read, the more I got into the book. Chapters 5 and 9 are my favorite ones. In Chapter 5, I loved reading about Melinda's personal story with Bill and showed me what an equal partnership really means. Chapter 9 wraps up the book beautifully with much wisdom about people living in the margins and how we should face the pain and instead create a world of inclusion. Below are the book passages that I took note of on OneNote, as I was reading the book. Pg. 149: "Killian says, 'To be known wi The more I read, the more I got into the book. Chapters 5 and 9 are my favorite ones. In Chapter 5, I loved reading about Melinda's personal story with Bill and showed me what an equal partnership really means. Chapter 9 wraps up the book beautifully with much wisdom about people living in the margins and how we should face the pain and instead create a world of inclusion. Below are the book passages that I took note of on OneNote, as I was reading the book. Pg. 149: "Killian says, 'To be known without being loved is terrifying. To be loved without being known has no power to change us. But to be deeply known and deeply loved transforms us.'" Pg. 150: "That is why we women have to lift each other up – not to replace men at the top of the hierarchy, but to become partners with men in ending hierarchy." Pg. 164: "There was an empathy barrier. The outsiders showed little skill in projecting themselves into the lives of the people they wanted to help, and they had little interest in trying to understand why something was being done in a certain way. They didn't even have the patience to explain to villagers why they thought something should change." "Outrage can save one girl or two, she told me. Only empathy can change the system." Pg. 237: "The United States is one of only seven countries in the world that do not provide paid maternity leave – joining the company of Papua New Guinea, Suriname, and a handful of other island nations. This is startling evidence that the United States is far behind the rest of the world in honoring the needs of families." Pg. 238: "The lack of paid leave in the US is symptomatic of a workplace culture that also struggles with sexual harassment, gender bias, and a general indifference to family life." Pg. 252: "Brene Brown says that the original definition of courage is to let ourselves be seen. And I think one of the purest ways to let ourselves be seen is to ask for what we want – especially when no one wants us to have it." Pg. 256: "Many successful social movements are driven by the same combination – strong activism and the ability to take pain without passing it on. Anyone who can combine those two finds a voice with moral force." Pg. 257: "If we can face our pain, we can find our voice" Pg. 259: "Leaders who can master their pain have taken self-interest off their agenda, so their voice rings with moral power. They are no longer speaking their truth. They are speaking truth." " Every society says its outsiders are the problem. But the outsiders are not the problem; the urge to create outsiders is the problem. Overcoming that urge is our greatest challenge and our greatest promise. It will take courage and insight, because the people we push to the margins are the ones who trigger in us the feelings we're afraid of."

  23. 4 out of 5

    Fully.Booked

    ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 - LADIES AND GENTLEMEN this is a must-read👏🏼 Gates opened my eyes to a whole other side of women empowerment💃🏼 She adressed a lot of different issues, many that seem forgotten in today’s society - there’s a particular focus on developing countries and on her and Bill’s foundation. She’s clearly educated and passionate about her work but her tone is very down-to-earth, which I loved. A lot of what she said resonated with me and I think this is exactly what its intended to be - educat ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 - LADIES AND GENTLEMEN this is a must-read👏🏼 Gates opened my eyes to a whole other side of women empowerment💃🏼 She adressed a lot of different issues, many that seem forgotten in today’s society - there’s a particular focus on developing countries and on her and Bill’s foundation. She’s clearly educated and passionate about her work but her tone is very down-to-earth, which I loved. A lot of what she said resonated with me and I think this is exactly what its intended to be - educational, motivating and uplifting👏🏼

  24. 5 out of 5

    Betsy Robinson

    "What do I want?" I often ask myself. And usually my answer is some version of "To be useful, being who I am." I am not Melinda Gates, but being who I am—a person who reads and gives her opinions about books—my most useful function here would be to say that Melinda Gates has found out who she is and is using every cell of that self to help lift up others—women and men. And to that end, she has written a wonderful book. Yes, it's about working for women's equality all over the world, but the natur "What do I want?" I often ask myself. And usually my answer is some version of "To be useful, being who I am." I am not Melinda Gates, but being who I am—a person who reads and gives her opinions about books—my most useful function here would be to say that Melinda Gates has found out who she is and is using every cell of that self to help lift up others—women and men. And to that end, she has written a wonderful book. Yes, it's about working for women's equality all over the world, but the nature of women's equality is that it is synonymous with everyone's equality. And peace. Now, being who I am, I know enough to hand the microphone over to Ms. Gates who says: "I think male dominance is harmful to society because any dominance is harmful: It means society is governed by a false hierarchy where power and opportunity are awarded according to gender, age, wealth, and privilege—not according to skill, effort, talent, or accomplishments. When a culture of dominance is broken, it activates power in all of us. So the goal for me is not the rise of women and the fall of man. It is the rise of both women and men from a struggle for dominance to a state of partnership. (149)" ". . . sometimes all that's needed to lift women up is to stop pulling them down. (2)" ". . . when women get information, tools, funding, and a sense of our power, women lift off and take the group where they want it to go. (25)" "Countries that are dominated by men suffer not only because they don't use the talent of their women but because they are run by men who have a need to exclude. (26)" "The challenge of delivery [of help] reveals the causes of poverty. You learn why people are poor. You don't have to guess what the barriers are. As soon as you try to deliver help, you run into them. (49)" [Contemplate then the correlation and effect of making all kinds of services—i.e., family planning healthcare—unavailable by moving it out of a community where people lack the funds to travel to where it is.] "Overcoming the need to create outsiders is our greatest challenge as human beings. It is the key to ending deep inequality. We stigmatize and send to the margins people who trigger in us the feelings we want to avoid. (52)" "I've come to learn that stigma is always an effort to suppress someone's voice. It forces people to hide in shame. The best way to fight back is to speak up—to say openly the very thing that others stigmatize. It's a direct attack on the self-censorship that stigma needs to survive. (79)" "An abusive culture, to me, is any culture that needs to single out and exclude a group. It's always a less productive culture because the organization's energy is diverted from lifting people up to keeping people down. It's like an autoimmune disease, where the body sees its own organs as threats and begins attacking them. (221)" "When people see the effects of poor nurture and call it nature, they discourage the training of women for key positions, and that strengthens the view that the disparity is due to biology. What makes the biology assertion so insidious is that it sabotages the development of women, and it relieves men of any responsibility for examining their motives and practices. That's how gender bias 'plants the evidence' that leads some people to see the effects of their own bias and call it biology. And that perpetuates a culture that women don't want to join. (222)" "Gender and racial diversity is essential for a healthy society. When one group marginalizes others and decides on its own what will be pursued and prioritized, its decisions will reflect its values, its mindsets, and its blind spots. (225)" [This is followed by absolutely harrowing facts about computer code that is written by predominantly white people, thereby codifying bias because it programs all AI to not recognize faces of people who look different—this has ramifications in every area of life and, if it weren't true, it would make a great dystopian horror film.] [In talking about how a violence prevention program to protect sex workers in India worked,] "Ashok Alexander, then head of our India office, put it bluntly, 'Every man who's a bully is scared of a group of women.'" "Many successful social movements are driven by the same combination—strong activism and the ability to take pain without passing it on. Anyone who can combine those two finds a voice with a moral force. (256)" [When] "we see ourselves as others. That is the moment of lift. (264)"Amen.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Kyra Leseberg (Roots & Reads)

    I've known for years that Melinda Gates is an inspiring philanthropist who has worked mostly behind the scenes. This book brings her into the spotlight and focuses on her investment in women across the globe; giving them access to contraceptives and education while lifting their voices to create equality and opportunities to advance their lives. Gates strongly believes in a woman's choice to decide whether and when to have children and even speaks candidly about her own use of contraception to sp I've known for years that Melinda Gates is an inspiring philanthropist who has worked mostly behind the scenes. This book brings her into the spotlight and focuses on her investment in women across the globe; giving them access to contraceptives and education while lifting their voices to create equality and opportunities to advance their lives. Gates strongly believes in a woman's choice to decide whether and when to have children and even speaks candidly about her own use of contraception to space out the growth of her family.  As a devoted Catholic, she has received major backlash from the church for her contraception advocacy. The book covers many heated topics surrounding women's rights around the world and discusses brutal topics like female genital mutilation, sex work, and child marriage with the powerful stories of women Gates met in her travels to educate herself on the issues. Gates doesn't sit in a room and look at the numbers and statistics and throw money at them; she travels to locations around the world to listen to the stories and find out what these women need to flourish. The word "abortion" has triggered so many strong reactions, especially in recent weeks, and I loved that this book does not at any point debate abortion but instead focuses on the issues that directly effect the debate, especially access to contraceptives, medical facilities, and education.  Gates offers compelling stories, statistics, and evidence that a woman's ability to make choices, especially those that directly effect her body and her family dynamic, impact everyone in positive ways. Gates has a strong voice and she is using it to break down barriers and change the conversation to focus on the real issues.  I appreciate her compassion and determination to change lives.   While there are some statistics listed throughout to drive home a point, this book primarily focuses on the personal stories of women in several countries and offers rational insight into the cause and effects of the topics discussed. The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World is a thoughtful and engaging look at Gates's work to promote equality with a few candid stories to share her own growth.  The message here is powerful and presented in an uplifting way.   For more reviews, visit www.rootsandreads.wordpress.com

  26. 5 out of 5

    (a)lyss(a)

    I received a copy of this book from a Goodreads First Reads Giveaway in exchange for an honest review. This book was around 3.5 stars for me. While Melinda Gates is open about her faith and her experience and why she believes in supporting women I wish this book had dug deeper. There are powerful anecdotes about child brides and women who died in childbirth where Gates explained these are the experiences that moved her and even stories about her own marriage and how the Gates' discuss their domes I received a copy of this book from a Goodreads First Reads Giveaway in exchange for an honest review. This book was around 3.5 stars for me. While Melinda Gates is open about her faith and her experience and why she believes in supporting women I wish this book had dug deeper. There are powerful anecdotes about child brides and women who died in childbirth where Gates explained these are the experiences that moved her and even stories about her own marriage and how the Gates' discuss their domestic duties. However, there aren't a lot of facts about how letting women plan their family size and care improves economies, improves child welfare outcomes, and other positive attributes. Perhaps this book is written to preach to the choir, so to speak, but anyone who has doubts about advocating for women who picks up this book will be faced with heartwrenching and heartwarming stories, but not a number or facts. It may also be written this way to make this story more accessible and readable like a narrative, as it is a fairly simple read, but for such a platform I was hoping for a bit more depth. That being said Gates is a strong advocate for women and uses this book to share their story as well as parts of her own to explain why the Gates' launched their Foundation. This is a thoughtful read.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jayne Gerdeman Homsher

    I have to say this book by Melinda Gates has grabbed my attention from start to finish. I cancelled my entire day to read her book cover to cover and then I sent her a message on Twitter. My senses of well being and support for other women have been encouraged in the right ways from this book. I have always tried to inspire women of all ages to get involved in working in science, and technologies that are coming to the marketplace. I only wish I could do even more well this book really drives it I have to say this book by Melinda Gates has grabbed my attention from start to finish. I cancelled my entire day to read her book cover to cover and then I sent her a message on Twitter. My senses of well being and support for other women have been encouraged in the right ways from this book. I have always tried to inspire women of all ages to get involved in working in science, and technologies that are coming to the marketplace. I only wish I could do even more well this book really drives it home for me and I will be sharing this book with many women who need to read and become inspired as well. She has always set her goals high and to listen and use her ideas going forward to help and build. She found a way to fit right in working with men and even leading men. She is smart, driven and open in her mindset to develop change with leadership, hard work and purpose that is inspiring to those around her efforts. After reading this particular book I have allowed myself to garner some smart ways to build on her ideas and comments to help in my current work. I am semi retired now as I started my own career in bleeding edge technology a long time ago but now I use my past business experience to help those with disabilities not feel left out in their own careers.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Renégade ♥

    5 stars And most of us fall into one of the same three groups: the people who try to create outsiders, the people who are made to feel like outsiders, and the people who stand by and don't stop it. Anyone can be made to feel like an outsider. It’s up to the people who have the power to exclude. Often it’s on the basis of race. Depending on a culture’s fears and biases, Jews can be treated as outsiders. Muslims can be treated as outsiders. Christians can be treated as outsiders. The poor are always 5 stars And most of us fall into one of the same three groups: the people who try to create outsiders, the people who are made to feel like outsiders, and the people who stand by and don't stop it. Anyone can be made to feel like an outsider. It’s up to the people who have the power to exclude. Often it’s on the basis of race. Depending on a culture’s fears and biases, Jews can be treated as outsiders. Muslims can be treated as outsiders. Christians can be treated as outsiders. The poor are always outsiders. The sick are often outsiders. People with disabilities can be treated as outsiders. Members of the LGBTQ community can be treated as outsiders. Immigrants are almost always outsiders. And in most every society, women can be made to feel like outsiders—even in their own homes. Overcoming the need to create outsiders is our greatest challenge as human beings. It is the key to ending deep inequality. We stigmatize and send to the margins people who trigger in us the feelings we want to avoid. This is why there are so many old and weak and sick and poor people on the margins of society. We tend to push out the people who have qualities we’re most afraid we will find in ourselves—and sometimes we falsely ascribe qualities we disown to certain groups, then push those groups out as a way of denying those traits in ourselves. This is what drives dominant groups to push different racial and religious groups to the margins. And we’re often not honest about what’s happening. If we’re on the inside and see someone on the outside, we often say to ourselves, “I’m not in that situation because I’m different.” But that’s just pride talking. We could easily be that person. We have all things inside us. We just don’t like to confess what we have in common with outsiders because it’s too humbling. It suggests that maybe success and failure aren’t entirely fair. And if you know you got the better deal, then you have to be humble, and it hurts to give up your sense of superiority and say, “I’m no better than others.” So instead we invent excuses for our need to exclude. We say it’s about merit or tradition when it’s really just protecting our privilege and our pride. -- Melinda French Gates

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jeanne

    I started Moment of Lift and almost set it aside. The first chapter felt disorganized and flaky. I'm reading this with my mother and her reading group, so I was a bit more motivated to continue. Having continued, however, I think my initial reaction stemmed from bias. I am an Apple not a PC fan. I'm skeptical of do-gooder billionaires. I won't back off my Apple bias, but being a billionaire doesn't mean that one cannot also have excellent ideas. Melinda Gates wrote about her Foundation's global in I started Moment of Lift and almost set it aside. The first chapter felt disorganized and flaky. I'm reading this with my mother and her reading group, so I was a bit more motivated to continue. Having continued, however, I think my initial reaction stemmed from bias. I am an Apple not a PC fan. I'm skeptical of do-gooder billionaires. I won't back off my Apple bias, but being a billionaire doesn't mean that one cannot also have excellent ideas. Melinda Gates wrote about her Foundation's global initiatives addressing poverty, which specifically addressed the obstacles wthat leave women in poverty and unable to support their families: Because when you lift up women, you lift up humanity (p. 2). Gates is a systems thinker, which means that many of her Foundation's solutions are circuitous rather than direct. Rather than only giving Indian sex workers condoms to prevent the spread of HIV, she listened: “We don’t need your help with condoms... We’ll teach you about condoms. We need help preventing violence” (p. 247). When they felt safe from violence from police, they could carry condoms. When they felt safe from violence from clients, they could insist on condom use. Or, in discussing the power of educating girls and women: Sending girls to school leads to greater literacy, higher wages, faster income growth, and more productive farming. It reduces premarital sex, lowers the chance of early marriage, delays first births, and helps mothers plan how many children to have and when. Mothers who have had an education do a better job learning about nutrition, vaccination, and other behaviors necessary for raising healthy children. (pp. 92-93). Sometimes the fastest route is not that which is most direct. As with the last examples, the solutions described throughout Moment of Lift required thinking outside the box. Having husbands and wives role-play each other, for example, allowed them to see their situations differently and to recognize solutions they had not imagined previously – and led to more productive farms, which allowed them to earn enough to send their children to school. Gates described approaches that were risky and innovative, but innovation is not sufficient; success came from listening to people, learning what they want, what they’re doing, what they believe, and what barriers they face. It means paying attention to how people live their lives (pp. 42-43). Gates is a committed Catholic and part of an ongoing spiritual group, but she is also deeply committed to the importance of family planning. Her beliefs about contraception depended on her spiritual understandings, personal values, and her observations. They are not simply theoretical ideas, but lived values. As she quoted a Kenyan mother: “Do you want to know why I use contraceptives?... Because I want to bring every good thing to this child before I have another” (p. 70). Gates sees failures to discuss and engage in family planning as attributable to "society's discomfort with women's sexuality" and with men's control on power and their failures in empathy. If women held positions of power in the Catholic Church, would they draw the same conclusions? As a systems thinker, a woman who values process as much as the end result, a woman who truly values respect and gender equity, her conclusions are not surprising: I can’t be happy if you’re sad. I can’t win if you lose. If either of us suffers, we suffer together. (p. 263) If this sort of attitude infused the whole of politics, our world would be a better place.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Linda

    Everyone should read this book. EVERYONE. Melinda Gates sets thoughtful, wise, and poignant agendas to promote inclusion and dissipate factions in humanity. She learned that what appeared to be the answers to a problem weren't always appreciated by the people affected who, obviously, knew more about the situation and what was needed. So, she listened and worked at changing programs of assistance to actually benefit someone. (Condoms are not the answer to STDs and childhood poverty if the women wit Everyone should read this book. EVERYONE. Melinda Gates sets thoughtful, wise, and poignant agendas to promote inclusion and dissipate factions in humanity. She learned that what appeared to be the answers to a problem weren't always appreciated by the people affected who, obviously, knew more about the situation and what was needed. So, she listened and worked at changing programs of assistance to actually benefit someone. (Condoms are not the answer to STDs and childhood poverty if the women with condoms are considered sex workers and both the men and the police would beat the women if caught with condoms.) The book is written in easy to understand language. No gobbledygook. Just the facts, ma'am. Just the facts. I especially loved the last paragraph before the epilogue. Gave me something (more) to think about.

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