Amplified Voices: Books about Feminism Written by Black Women

Black women discuss gender equity, women’s rights, and equality in these five recommendations.

Believing: Our Thirty-Year Journey to End Gender Violence by Anita Hill
From the woman who gave the landmark testimony against Clarence Thomas as a sexual menace, a new manifesto about the origins and course of gender violence in our society; a combination of memoir, personal accounts, law, and social analysis, and a powerful call to arms from one of our most prominent and poised survivors.

Black is the Body: Stories from My Grandmother’s Time, My Mother’s Time, and Mine by Emily Bernard
In these twelve deeply personal, connected essays, Bernard details the experience of growing up black in the south with a family name inherited from a white man, surviving a random stabbing at a New Haven coffee shop, marrying a white man from the North, and bringing him home to her family, adopting two children from Ethiopia, and living and teaching in a primarily white New England college town.

Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love and So Much More by Janet Mock
This powerful memoir follows Mock’s quest for identity, from her early gender conviction to a turbulent adolescence in Honolulu that found her transitioning through the halls of her school, self-medicating with hormones at fifteen, and flying across the world for sex reassignment surgery at just eighteen. Also available on Hoopla.

Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower by Brittney C. Cooper
Too often, Black women’s anger has been caricatured as 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. In the Black feminist tradition of Audre Lorde, Cooper reminds us that anger is a powerful source of energy that can give us the strength to keep on fighting. Also available on Hoopla.

Hood Feminism: Notes from the Women That a Movement Forgot by Mikki Kendall
A collection of essays taking 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. How can we stand in solidarity as a movement, Kendall asks, when there is the distinct likelihood that some women are oppressing others? Also available on Hoopla.