Books to support us in our spiritual activism and priestess work, so we can walk with integrity and understand ourselves better within the world we live in.
**Please note--the reviews/book descriptions are directly from either Amazon or the authors site and were not written by me. Also all of these books can be found in our Recommended Reading list as well.** ***If you have more suggestions please let me know so I can add them as this list is ever growing and improving.***
Hood Feminism. Notes from the woman that a movement forgot. By Nikki Kendall A potent and electrifying critique of today's feminist movement announcing a fresh new voice in black feminism Today's feminist movement has a glaring blind spot, and paradoxically, it is women. Mainstream feminists rarely talk about meeting basic needs as a feminist issue, argues Mikki Kendall, but food insecurity, access to quality education, safe neighborhoods, a living wage, and medical care are all feminist issues. All too often, however, the focus is not on basic survival for the many, but on increasing privilege for the few. That feminists refuse to prioritize these issues has only exacerbated the age-old problem of both internecine discord and women who rebuff at carrying the title. Moreover, prominent white feminists broadly suffer from their own myopia with regard to how things like race, class, sexual orientation, and ability intersect with gender. How can we stand in solidarity as a movement, Kendall asks, when there is the distinct likelihood that some women are oppressing others? In her searing collection of essays, Mikki Kendall takes aim at the legitimacy of the modern feminist movement arguing that it has chronically failed to address the needs of all but a few women. Drawing on her own experiences with hunger, violence, and hypersexualization, along with incisive commentary on politics, pop culture, the stigma of mental health, and more, Hood Feminism delivers an irrefutable indictment of a movement in flux. An unforgettable debut, Kendall has written a ferocious clarion call to all would-be feminists to live out the true mandate of the movement in thought and in deed.
Women Race and Class. By:Angela Davis A powerful study of the women's movement in the U.S. from abolitionist days to the present that demonstrates how it has always been hampered by the racist and classist biases of its leaders.
Talkin' Up to the White Woman: Indigenous Women and Feminism By Aileen Moreton-Robinson Revealing the invisible position of power and privilege in feminist practice, this accessible and provocative analysis elucidates the whiteness of Australian feminism. A pioneering work, it will overturn complacent notions of a mutual sisterhood and the common good.
Sister Outsider By Audre Lourde Presenting the essential writings of black lesbian poet and feminist writer Audre Lorde, SISTER OUTSIDER celebrates an influential voice in twentieth-century literature. In this charged collection of fifteen essays and speeches, Lorde takes on sexism, racism, ageism, homophobia, and class, and propounds social difference as a vehicle for action and change. Her prose is incisive, unflinching, and lyrical, reflecting struggle but ultimately offering messages of hope. This commemorative edition includes a new foreword by Lorde scholar and poet Cheryl Clarke, who celebrates the ways in which Lorde's philosophies resonate more than twenty years after they were first published. These landmark writings are, in Lorde's own words, a call to “never close our eyes to the terror, to the chaos which is Black which is creative which is female which is dark which is rejected which is messy which is. . . .”
Making Space for Indigenous Feminism By Joyce Green The majority of scholarly and activist opinion by and about Indigenous women claims that feminism is irrelevant for them. Yet there is also an articulate, theoretically informed and activist constituency that identifies as feminist. This book is by and about Indigenous feminists, whose work demonstrates a powerful and original intellectual and political contribution demonstrating that feminism has much to offer Indigenous women in their struggles against oppression and for equality. Indigenous feminism is international in its scope: the contributors here are from Canada, the USA, Sapmi (Samiland), and Aotearoa/New Zealand. The chapters include theoretical contributions, stories of political activism, and deeply personal accounts of developing political consciousness as Aboriginal feminists.
Stamped from the Beginning. A definitive History of Racist ideas in America and How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X Kendi Some Americans cling desperately to the myth that we are living in a post-racial society, that the election of the first Black president spelled the doom of racism. In fact, racist thought is alive and well in America - more sophisticated and more insidious than ever. And as award-winning historian Ibram X. Kendi argues in Stamped from the Beginning, if we have any hope of grappling with this stark reality, we must first understand how racist ideas were developed, disseminated, and enshrined in American society. In this deeply researched and fast-moving narrative, Kendi chronicles the entire story of anti-Black racist ideas and their staggering power over the course of American history. Stamped from the Beginning uses the life stories of five major American intellectuals - Puritan minister Cotton Mather, Thomas Jefferson, abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison, W.E.B. Du Bois, and legendary activist Angela Davis. - to offer a window into the contentious debates between assimilationists and segregationists and between racists and antiracists.
A really great interview/Ted Talk with Ibram: There is no such thing as being "not racist," says author and historian Ibram X. Kendi. In this vital conversation, he defines the transformative concept of antiracism to help us more clearly recognize, take responsibility for and reject prejudices in our public policies, workplaces and personal beliefs. Learn how you can actively use this awareness to uproot injustice and inequality in the world -- and replace it with love. (This virtual interview, hosted by TED's current affairs curator Whitney Pennington Rodgers and speaker development curator Cloe Shasha, was recorded June 9, 2020.) Click Here to watch.
How to Be an Antiracist Ibram X Kendi Antiracism is a transformative concept that reorients and reenergizes the conversation about racism - and, even more fundamentally, points us toward liberating new ways of thinking about ourselves and each other. At its core, racism is a powerful system that creates false hierarchies of human value; its warped logic extends beyond race, from the way we regard people of different ethnicities or skin colors to the way we treat people of different sexes, gender identities, and body types. Racism intersects with class and culture and geography and even changes the way we see and value ourselves. In How to Be an Antiracist, Kendi takes listeners through a widening circle of antiracist ideas - from the most basic concepts to visionary possibilities - that will help listeners see all forms of racism clearly, understand their poisonous consequences, and work to oppose them in our systems and in ourselves. Kendi weaves an electrifying combination of ethics, history, law, and science with his own personal story of awakening to antiracism. This is an essential work for anyone who wants to go beyond the awareness of racism to the next step: contributing to the formation of a just and equitable society.
Unsettling the Settler Within. By, Paulette Regan In 2008, Canada established a Truth and Reconciliation Commission to mend the deep rifts between Aboriginal peoples and the settler society that created Canada’s notorious residential school system. Unsettling the Settler Within argues that non-Aboriginal Canadians must undergo their own process of decolonization in order to truly participate in the transformative possibilities of reconciliation. Settlers must relinquish the persistent myth of themselves as peacemakers and acknowledge the destructive legacy of a society that has stubbornly ignored and devalued Indigenous experience. A compassionate call to action, this powerful book offers a new and hopeful path toward healing the wounds of the past.
So you want to talk about Race. By Ljeoma Oluo A current, constructive, and actionable exploration of today's racial landscape, offering straightforward clarity that listeners of all races need to contribute to the dismantling of the racial divide In So You Want to Talk About Race, editor-at-large of The Establishment Ijeoma Oluo offers a contemporary, accessible take on the racial landscape in America, addressing head-on such issues as privilege, police brutality, intersectionality, micro-aggressions, the Black Lives Matter movement, and the "N" word. Perfectly positioned to bridge the gap between people of color and white Americans struggling with race complexities, Oluo answers the questions listeners don't dare ask and explains the concepts that continue to elude everyday Americans. Oluo is an exceptional writer with a rare ability to be straightforward, funny, and effective in her coverage of sensitive, hyper-charged issues in America. Her messages are passionate but finely tuned and crystallize ideas that would otherwise be vague by empowering them with aha-moment clarity. Her writing brings to mind voices like Ta-Nehisi Coates and Roxane Gay, Jessica Valenti in Full Frontal Feminism, and a young Gloria Naylor, particularly in Naylor's seminal essay "The Meaning of a Word". A Harper's Bazaar pick of One of 10 Books to Read in 2018.
Asian American Feminisms and Women of Color Politics by Lynn Fujiwara ,Shireen Roshanravan, Piya Chatterjee Asian American Feminisms and Women of Color Politics brings together groundbreaking essays that speak to the relationship between Asian American feminisms, feminist of color work, and transnational feminist scholarship. This collection, featuring work by both senior and rising scholars, considers topics including the politics of visibility, histories of Asian American participation in women of color political formations, accountability for Asian American ?settler complicities? and cross-racial solidarities, and Asian American community-based strategies against state violence as shaped by and tied to women of color feminisms. Asian American Feminisms and Women of Color Politics provides a deep conceptual intervention into the theoretical underpinnings of Asian American studies; ethnic studies; women?s, gender, and sexual studies; as well as cultural studies in general.
My Grandmother's Hands: Racialized Trauma and the Pathway to Mending Our Hearts and Bodies By: Resmaa Menakem The body is where our instincts reside and where we fight, flee, or freeze, and it endures the trauma inflicted by the ills that plague society. In this groundbreaking work, therapist Resmaa Menakem examines the damage caused by racism in America from the perspective of body-centered psychology. He argues this destruction will continue until Americans learn to heal the generational anguish of white supremacy, which is deeply embedded in all our bodies. Our collective agony doesn't just affect African Americans. White Americans suffer their own secondary trauma as well. So do blue Americans - our police. My Grandmother's Hands is a call to action for all of us to recognize that racism is not about the head, but about the body, and introduces an alternative view of what we can do to grow beyond our entrenched racialized divide.
Paves the way for a new, body-centered understanding of white supremacy - how it is literally in our blood and our nervous system
Offers a step-by-step solution - a healing process- in addition to incisive social commentary
Resmaa Menakem, MSW, LICSW, is a therapist with decades of experience currently in private practice in Minneapolis, MN, specializing in trauma, body-centered psychotherapy, and violence prevention. He has appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show and Dr. Phil as an expert on conflict and violence. Menakem has studied with best-selling authors Dr. David Schnarch (Passionate Marriage) and Dr. Bessel van der Kolk (The Body Keeps the Score). He also trained at Peter Levine's Somatic Experiencing Trauma Institute.
White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism By: Robin Diangelo The New York Times best-selling book exploring the counterproductive reactions white people have when their assumptions about race are challenged and how these reactions maintain racial inequality. In this “vital, necessary, and beautiful book” (Michael Eric Dyson), antiracist educator Robin DiAngelo deftly illuminates the phenomenon of white fragility and “allows us to understand racism as a practice not restricted to 'bad people'" (Claudia Rankine). Referring to the defensive moves that white people make when challenged racially, white fragility is characterized by emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt and by behaviors including argumentation and silence. These behaviors, in turn, function to reinstate white racial equilibrium and prevent any meaningful cross-racial dialogue. In this in-depth exploration, DiAngelo examines how white fragility develops, how it protects racial inequality, and what we can do to engage more constructively.
White Spaces Missing Faces: Why Women of Color Don't Trust White Women . By:Catrice M Jackson There has NEVER been a time in history when white women have collectively stood up for or put their lives at risk for women of color; ever! Women of color have centuries of legitimate reasons to NOT trust white women; in personal relationships, on the job and online. Racism and White Feminism are paramount to why women of color do NOT attend, participate, thrive or stay in white spaces. White spaces are toxic breeding grounds for racial interpersonal violence under the guise of “feminism” and women’s empowerment. White Spaces Missing Faces boldly objects the illusion of inclusion and exposes the unrepentant truth about the Weapons of Whiteness used by white women to silence, marginalize, violate and oppress women of color. White Spaces Missing Faces unearths the covert roots of racial antipathy between white women and women of color and provides radical solutions for relationship reconciliation, reparation and restoration. White Spaces Missing Faces teaches you how to lay down your Weapons of Whiteness to stop assaulting women of color while creating, cultivating and sustaining an environment where they stay, thrive and flourish by denouncing your own racism and becoming an anti-racist Accomplice.
Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower By Brittney Cooper With searing honesty, intimacy, and humor too, America's leading young Black feminist celebrates the power of rage in this piercing new audiobook. So what if it's true that Black women are mad as hell? They have the right to be. In the Black feminist tradition of Audre Lorde, Brittney Cooper reminds us that anger is a powerful source of energy that can give us the strength to keep on fighting. Far too often, Black women's anger has been caricatured into an ugly and destructive force that threatens the civility and social fabric of American democracy. But Cooper shows us that there is more to the story than that. Black women's eloquent rage is what makes Serena Williams such a powerful tennis player. It's what makes Beyoncé's girl power anthems resonate so hard. It's what makes Michelle Obama an icon. Eloquent rage keeps us all honest and accountable. It reminds women that they don't have to settle for less. When Cooper learned of her grandmother's eloquent rage about love, sex, and marriage in an epic and hilarious front-porch confrontation, her life was changed. And it took another intervention, this time staged by one of her homegirls, to turn Brittney into the fierce feminist she is today. In Brittney Cooper's world, neither mean girls nor f--kboys ever win. But homegirls emerge as heroes. This audiobook argues that ultimately feminism, friendship, and faith in one's own superpowers are all we really need to turn things right side up again.
Feminism without Borders: Decolonizing Theory, Practicing Solidarity by Chandra Talpade Mohanty Bringing together classic and new writings of the trailblazing feminist theorist Chandra Talpade Mohanty, Feminism without Borders addresses some of the most pressing and complex issues facing contemporary feminism. Forging vital links between daily life and collective action and between theory and pedagogy, Mohanty has been at the vanguard of Third World and international feminist thought and activism for nearly two decades. This collection highlights the concerns running throughout her pioneering work: the politics of difference and solidarity, decolonizing and democratizing feminist practice, the crossing of borders, and the relation of feminist knowledge and scholarship to organizing and social movements. Mohanty offers here a sustained critique of globalization and urges a reorientation of transnational feminist practice toward anticapitalist struggles.Feminism without Borders opens with Mohanty's influential critique of western feminism ("Under Western Eyes") and closes with a reconsideration of that piece based on her latest thinking regarding the ways that gender matters in the racial, class, and national formations of globalization. In between these essays, Mohanty meditates on the lives of women workers at different ends of the global assembly line (in India, the United Kingdom, and the United States); feminist writing on experience, identity, and community; dominant conceptions of multiculturalism and citizenship; and the corporatization of the North American academy. She considers the evolution of interdisciplinary programs like Women's Studies and Race and Ethnic Studies; pedagogies of accommodation and dissent; and transnational women's movements for grassroots ecological solutions and consumer, health, and reproductive rights. Mohanty's probing and provocative analyses of key concepts in feminist thought—"home," "sisterhood," "experience," "community"—lead the way toward a feminism without borders, a feminism fully engaged with the realities of a transnational world.
The Inconvenient Indian: A Curious Account of Native People in North America By: Thomas King The Inconvenient Indian is at once a “history” and the complete subversion of a history - in short, a critical and personal meditation that the remarkable Thomas King has conducted over the past 50 years about what it means to be “Indian” in North America. Rich with dark and light, pain and magic, this book distills the insights gleaned from that meditation, weaving the curiously circular tale of the relationship between non-Natives and Natives in the centuries since the two first encountered each other. In the process, King refashions old stories about historical events and figures, takes a sideways look at film and pop culture, relates his own complex experiences with activism, and articulates a deep and revolutionary understanding of the cumulative effects of ever-shifting laws and treaties on Native peoples and lands. This is a book both timeless and timely, burnished with anger but tempered by wit, and ultimately a hard-won offering of hope - a sometimes inconvenient but nonetheless indispensable account for all of us, Indian and non-Indian alike, seeking to understand how we might tell a new story for the future.
Me and White Supremacy By Layla F Saad The New York Times and USA Today bestseller! This eye-opening book challenges you to do the essential work of unpacking your biases, and helps white people take action and dismantle the privilege within themselves so that you can stop (often unconsciously) inflicting damage on people of color, and in turn, help other white people do better, too. Layla Saad is one of the most important and valuable teachers we have right now on the subject of white supremacy and racial injustice."? New York Times bestselling author Elizabeth Gilbert Based on the viral Instagram challenge that captivated participants worldwide, Me and White Supremacy takes readers on a 28-day journey, complete with journal prompts, to do the necessary and vital work that can ultimately lead to improving race relations. Updated and expanded from the original workbook (downloaded by nearly 100,000 people), this critical text helps you take the work deeper by adding more historical and cultural contexts, sharing moving stories and anecdotes, and including expanded definitions, examples, and further resources, giving you the language to understand racism, and to dismantle your own biases, whether you are using the book on your own, with a book club, or looking to start family activism in your own home. This book will walk you step-by-step through the work of examining: • Examining your own white privilege • What allyship really means • Anti-blackness, racial stereotypes, and cultural appropriation • Changing the way that you view and respond to race • How to continue the work to create social change
Awareness leads to action, and action leads to change. For readers of White Fragility, White Rage, So You Want To Talk About Race, The New Jim Crow, How to Be an Anti-Racist and more who are ready to closely examine their own beliefs and biases and do the work it will take to create social change. "Layla Saad moves her readers from their heads into their hearts, and ultimately, into their practice. We won't end white supremacy through an intellectual understanding alone; we must put that understanding into action." ? Robin DiAngelo, author of New York Times bestseller White Fragility
We Should All Be Feminists Paperback by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie In this personal, eloquently-argued essay—adapted from her much-admired TEDx talk of the same name—Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, award-winning author of Americanah, offers readers a unique definition of feminism for the twenty-first century, one rooted in inclusion and awareness. Drawing extensively on her own experiences and her deep understanding of the often masked realities of sexual politics, here is one remarkable author’s exploration of what it means to be a woman now—and an of-the-moment rallying cry for why we should all be feminists.
Voicing Chicana Feminisms: Young Women Speak Out on Sexuality and Identity by Aida Hurtado Chicana voices are missing from the psychology of women. Though 'Chicana feminisms' have only recently been enumerated, a feminist perspective has long existed in Chicano communities without ever having been explicitly named. Grounded in specific aspects of Chicano culture such as the contested role of La Malinche and the complexities of Marianismo, the distinguishing feature of Chicana feminisms has been their embrace of diversity. Chicanas readily acribe to many feminisms and do not expect there to be only one. Focusing on young women between the ages of 20 and 30, Chicanas Speak Feminisms explores the relationship between Chicana feminism and the lived experiences of Chicanas. What do they see as their day-to-day manifestation of feminist consciousness? What is the relationship between what Chicana feminists propose and their lived experiences as women and as members of other significant social groups? Including rich ethnographic testimony based on questionnaires, in-depth interviews, and shadowing, Hurtado allows the women to speak in their own terms about how they see their femininity, sexuality, gender identity, ethnic/racial identity, and ties to other feminisms and political struggles.
Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men Hardcover by Caroline Criado PerezData is fundamental to the modern world. From economic development, to healthcare, to education and public policy, we rely on numbers to allocate resources and make crucial decisions. But because so much data fails to take into account gender, because it treats men as the default and women as atypical, bias and discrimination are baked into our systems. And women pay tremendous costs for this bias, in time, money, and often with their lives.
Celebrated feminist advocate Caroline Criado Perez investigates the shocking root cause of gender inequality and research in Invisible Women, diving into women’s lives at home, the workplace, the public square, the doctor’s office, and more. Built on hundreds of studies in the US, the UK, and around the world, and written with energy, wit, and sparkling intelligence, this is a groundbreaking, unforgettable exposé that will change the way you look at the world.
Far too often, Black women’s anger has been caricatured into an ugly and destructive force that threatens the civility and social fabric of American democracy. But Cooper shows us that there is more to the story than that.