It is not uncommon in school to learn about women’s suffrage. Most of us are familiar with the names of Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton because of it. As far as feminist history, this is often the beginning and the end of the story. If we want to know about the lives of women under slavery, the role that Black men and women played in achieving women’s suffrage, the treatment of working-class women by suffragists, and the stances that Black women took on the abortion and anti-rape movements, then we have to look elsewhere. Angela Davis’s 1981 masterpiece Women, Race & Class is where you can find all this and more. High school and college classrooms around the country would do well to add it to their syllabi.Read more
Gabrielle Blair’s book Ejaculate Responsibly has been praised online as a much-needed shift in the way that we talk about abortion. That seems appropriate, as the book’s subtitle is literally A Whole New Way to Think About Abortion.Read more
If there is one good thing that has come out of the fight for abortion rights this year, it is that there are so many great books coming out which tell the story from every angle. Published in April 2022, Lauren Rankin’s Bodies on the Line: At the Front Lines of the Fight to Protect Abortion in America is the go-to book to learn about the unsung heroes of the abortion access movement: clinic escorts.Read more
I have made a horrible mistake.
I allowed Big Bang: The Origin of the Universe by Simon Singh to sit on my bookshelf for three and a half years, unread. After finally reading this thrilling, enlightening, and entertaining book, I now know that all these years I was missing something great. And holographic.Read more
Thanks to a tweet from IndieBound a couple of months ago, I discovered Jólabókaflóð (yola-boka-flot), which translates to “Yule Book Flood.” It’s the Icelandic tradition of exchanging books on Christmas Eve and reading them late into the night while enjoying hot chocolate, and I knew I wanted to be a part of it.Read more
Last weekend, I was supposed to be at the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s 2021 National Convention in Boston. It would have been my first freethought conference ever. I had every second of our two days in Boston planned, down to dinner reservations, outfits, and bookstores. The five books I wanted signed were packed in my backpack, and my nails were even painted galaxy to be on-theme (even if no one noticed but me).Read more
If you have read Ibram X. Kendi’s bestseller How to Be an Antiracist, then you know that it is an absolute must-read. Kendi clearly explains why and how racism is sustained—and how it affects every group of people in dozens of intersecting ways—and he uses these facts to demonstrate how to dismantle it. While I definitely recommend that you read the entire book, here are some of my favorite quotes.Read more
On the surface, Dick Teresi’s Lost Discoveries: The Ancient Roots of Modern Science—from the Babylonians to the Maya is an eye-opening and thought-provoking book on the history of non-Western science. It is a book I would recommend to anyone who believes in the “Greek miracle,” who takes Carl Sagan’s words about the Ionian birth of science at face value, and generally anyone who wants to take a less white, less Western perspective on both science and history as wholes. However, anyone who reads this must also be able to question what they are reading, ask for the author’s sources and motivation, and be ready to think for themselves despite the author’s biases.
I first encountered Jesse Wegman’s Let the People Pick the President: The Case for Abolishing the Electoral College on display at a Half Price Books store soon after the book was published in 2020. My first impression was feeling like the book was unnecessary. I had never heard anyone arguing in favor of the Electoral College, and honestly I didn’t know of anyone who really supported it. I certainly agreed with the title, that the College ought to be abolished, so I felt like reading a book to explain why would be a waste of time. I later changed my mind (granted, after the 2020 election had taken place) and decided that I wanted all the information to make sure my opinion on this debate was an informed one.
I was a #bookstagrammer for a hot minute. I really liked seeing everyone’s books, cute book pictures, and short reviews. About a year ago, I finally gave up on that account for several reasons, but one of the reasons was that I never really felt that I fit in with the bookstagram community. Those who do fit in will tell you it’s the best online community they’ve ever experienced, but there’s something they don’t mention: the #bookstagram community is overwhelmingly dedicated to fiction.Read more