Explanation thesaurus

The Women’s Thesaurus is a useful tool for searching by subject. It consists of terms about women, gender, gender equality and feminism. It also includes synonyms along with broader, more specific and related terms. The thesaurus is a good starting point for searches involving theses, research, articles, programmes and policy memoranda.

Searching by subject

Information about women can be about anything concerning their experience and position in society. For instance: economic independence, feminism, domestic violence, informal care, migration, political participation and public perception.

This can entail historical subjects such as first-wave feminism, witches, women’s suffrage and black women’s history. In addition, it encompasses theoretical developments in women’s studies and feminist academic practice that involve intersectionality, theories of power, the nature versus culture debate and queer theory, etc. Terms relating to men and masculinity are also included.

Moreover, The Women’s Thesaurus contains geographical and time indications along with terms for the information’s form such as a thesis, statistics, a diary or song.

How does The Women’s Thesaurus work?

It is possible to click from term to term in the thesaurus. For instance, if the term ‘feminism’ fails to provide sufficient information, you could then opt for a broader term like ‘social movements’. Conversely, if you wish to refine your search, you should deploy more specific terms such as ‘first feminist wave’ and ‘radical feminism’. You could also look at related terms including ‘anti-feminism’ and ‘black feminism’.

Using thesaurus terms to search the collection

If you click on the term in bold in the centre of the thesaurus, you will leave the thesaurus and be shown the collection’s search results.

Both The Women’s Thesaurus and its English-language equivalent, The European Women’s Thesaurus (1998), are used not only by Atria but also by many other women’s information centres both at home and abroad. Atria maintains the online Women’s Thesaurus and the European Women’s Thesaurus.


You can contact the information desk at info@atria.nl with any questions about the thesaurus and also for help when searching.