From stars like Britney Spears and Mariah Carey to classic icons like Yoko Ono, female musicians have long been the target of double standards and toxic labels in the media and pop culture: liar, crazy, snake, diva, slut, b*tch.

These words can hurt all of us. The popular expression "sticks and stones" is wildly wrong. And the wounds are everywhere. Lily Hirsch confronts the full range of this sexist labeling as well as the repercussions, concentrating on the experiences of Yoko Ono, Courtney Love, Britney Spears, FKA twigs, Taylor Swift, Kesha, Mariah Carey, and Ariana Grande, among many others. While men can make outrageous backstage demands, women like Carey are punished as "divas." A sign of supposed genius for men, "crazy" is a word of condemnation for many women-with legal ramifications in Spears' case.

Hirsch dives into the world of these women, looking at their personal lives, relationships and breakups, music, media coverage, public reception, as well as the origins of these toxic labels and how they have caused serious damage. With this focus, the book reveals the inner workings of misogyny and invites us to think about these remarkable women on their own terms-showing us how women have fought back too, sometimes reclaiming these words and their own story through music.