Swiss banks, feminism, John Dean, more; Cross Sections from a Decade of Change, by Elizabeth Janeway. New York: William Morrow & Co. 320 pp. $14.95.

''If, like me, you were born in 1913, you should have acquired a sense of history one way or another, for history has been sneaking up behind you and banging you over the head ever since you arrived on this planet.''

A strong sense of history - the ability to view today's issues in perspective - is a distinguishing grace of Elizabeth Janeway's writing about women. Her collected essays, talks, and book reviews cover a great deal of ground, from prostitution in Victorian society to the position of female writers in literature.

As a feminist, Janeway presents her views with deep conviction - but without sloganeering or bitter diatribes. The temptation to polarize society into ''us'' and ''them'' is insidious, she warns. ''Women's issues are human issues, and human rights can never be won in full until we understand . . . that they involve all us humans, our needs and our capacities, across the boards.''

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