Originating 411 years BC, Lysistrata by Aristophanes remains relevant as one of the great comedic meditations on gender relations, sex, and war. The play also represents a rare example in literature of women banding together to wield collective power as a catalyst of change. Lysistrata talks all the women into holding out on the men until they get their shit together and end the Peloponnesian War. Hijinks ensue as the men can’t see past their rock-hard, deprived wangs.
At only eighty pages, you can afford to add Lysistrata to your intellectual canon. Since Lysistrata-inspired sex strikes continue to take place everywhere from Colombia to Kenya, consider this play requisite reading for the modern literate.