It is summer…a heat wave…tense, uneasy days in the city. There are ominous signs of political turbulence in the dying years of the twentieth century. Welfare benefits are under attack, but women are fighting back, using unorthodox weapons. Lynn Byers does not accept the government’s demand for a return to ‘womanly duties’. As desperate politicians use increasingly savage methods of control, she can no longer stand aside to watch. A classic of women’s fiction.
First published in 1979 by Virago, Benefits is a feminist dystopia in which a patriarchal state uses the social security system to impose repressive lifestyles on women. It was nominated for the Philip K Dick Award for science fiction, and the Hawthornden Prize for imaginative literature. It has been published throughout the world, and adapted for the stage at the Albany Empire in Deptford, London.