Much better to say Problems of Marxist Women's liberation!
I bought this book for two reasons:
1. Feminist books here in the book stores are so rare, perhaps because of some political reasons or just lack of interest.
2. It was so cheap!
This book was written by Marxist-Feminist Evelyn Reed in 1970, so many of the solutions for the problems of liberation that she suggested seem to be outdated. Here the main enemy is the capitalism, the root of all problems is the capitalism and so for liberation women first must join the Marxist movement.
In socialism a Family unit or a Nuclear family is not the best way of living especially for women. According to the anthropologists and also this
book of Engels- that the author refers to, in primitive era humans did not have anything like legal marriage or pair cohabitation. They had matriarchal/fratriarchy communities in which women didn't know their biological children's father and weren't obliged to raise their children alone. All children were considered the children of all men and women and they were not someone especial's properties. And it was in fact the first commune society. Women in these societies –not to say superior than men-were equal men. While men were hunters they were planters, when they discovered fire they learned how to cook on fire and change the chemical properties of foods. They discovered herbs and learned how to use them to cure diseases. They learned how to domesticate some kind of animals. They were potters, tanners, weavers, construction workers….So women were the first labors and farmers, scientists and physicians, architects and engineers, educators, nurses, artists, historians...
So this myth which believes women's inferiority is biological and natural is wrong. If patriarchal society is known for 8000 years, history of matriarchal society dates back to at least 100,000 years ago.
Then by developing rural and urban life and specially industrial revolution- proletariat and capitalism- women, little by little, were thrown away from their responsibilities. They became slaves of domestic life – nuclear family, man like the capitalism as the main power, woman and children as properties- and consumers. While for women who work outside home they have still excessive house works to do.
So in this way in Marxism, the root of all problems of women's liberation refers to limitations and boundaries which capitalism imposes on the working class of the society.
I think this book might not be whole the truth but can be referred to as a good historical analysis about Feminism with respect to Marxism.