We’re so excited about our new website! If you’d be interested in writing for our blog (interviews with local feminist writers, creative reflections on items you’ve found in our collection, pieces on intersectional writing or reading, or anything you think fits with what we do), we’d love to hear from you!
If you’d like to join us as a volunteer, please come to our next volunteer meeting: Thursday, May 2nd, 7-9pm at the WCCW (we’ll be meeting in the office). There are lots of ways you can help out, like planning programming with local libraries or other organizations (or during F.L.O.W.’s Sunday office hours), attending events, helping with our Patreon page or other fundraising, and more! In keeping with our mission and core values, we would particularly welcome the leadership and experience of women, trans, queer, gender-nonconforming, working class, or disabled feminists of color in our collective. Feel free to send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
We’re still looking for storage near the WCCW for our new cargo bike and soon-to-be-built custom trailer--if you can help please let us know!
Rad reads for May
We’re looking forward to the opening of Adee Roberson’s exhibition Tamarind this month, which explores “the forced migration of black people via the Trans Atlantic Slave Trade, and the subsequent movements of black peoples in the Caribbean, North America, and Western Africa, . . . collapsed, expanded, and offered as a type of energetic visual field.” There are several books on our shelves that might complement this work. Historian Rinaldo Walcott writes, of In the Wake: Of Blackness and Being, “Christina Sharpe’s deep engagement with the archive of Black knowledge production across theory, fiction, poetry, and other intellectual endeavors offers an avalanche of new insights on how to think about anti-Blackness as a significant and important structuring element of the modern scene.” Self-described queer Black troublemaker and Black feminist love evangelist Alexis Pauline Gumbs’ Spill: Scenes of Black Feminist Futurity, was published in the same year (2016), and poetically explores a similarly genre-bending, imaginative, and brave territory, specifically focused on the experiences of Black women and girls seeking freedom from gendered violence and racism.
You can also find more conventionally written and deeply researched historical texts, like Sowande M. Mustakeem’s Slavery at Sea: Terror, Sex, and Sickness in the Middle Passage, Wendy Warren’s New England Bound: Slavery and Colonization in Early America, or Mary Cable’s Black Odyssey: The Case of the Slave Ship Amistad. For younger readers we have Harriet Hyman Alonso’s 2017 fictional tale, Martha and the Slave Catchers, about thirteen year-old Martha and her dangerous journey to rescue her seven year-old brother Jake after the passage of the Fugitive Slave Law in 1850.
May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, and we’re fortunate to have a wide variety of texts you might want to check out now. We have lots of stellar fiction, like Japanese-American Cynthia Kadohata’s young adult novel Kira-Kira, about a Japanese-American family living in 1950s Georgia; Lensey Namioka’s story, also for youngsters, Half and Half, about a young girl trying to negotiate her identity as half Scottish and half Chinese; Hisaye Yamamoto’s classic story collection Seventeen Syllables (originally published in 1988 by Kitchen Table: Women of Color Press); Jade Chang’s recent The Wangs vs. The World; or Patricia Chao’s Monkey King.
For broader nonfiction perspectives, there are a few wonderful anthologies available now, like Shirley Hune’s Asian/Pacific Islander American Women: A Historical Anthology, as well as Sheela Bhatt’s Our Feet Walk the Sky: Women of the South Asian Diaspora. Or you can find excellent reads like Xiaolan Bao’s Holding Up More Than Half the Sky: Chinese Women Garment Workers in New York City, 1948-92 (which covers labor history very much still relevant today); Karen L. Ishizuka’s Serve the People: Making Asian America in the Sixties, which details the little-publicized trajectories of Asian-American social justice activism from the 1950s through the 1970s; and Shamita Das Dasgupta’s A Patchwork Shawl: Chronicles of South Asian Women in America.
It’s also Jewish American Heritage Month! We have a couple of beautiful books of photographs, like And prairie dogs weren’t kosher: Jewish Women in the upper Midwest since 1855, by Linda Mack Schloff, and The Invisible Thread: A Portrait of Jewish American Women, by Diana Bletter. If you’re into biographies and autobiographies, we can recommend Florence Howe’s A Life in Motion: A Memoir, Hannah Arendt’s Rahel Varnhagen: The Life of a Jewish Woman, or Helen Jacobus Apte’s Heart of a wife: The Diary of a Southern Jewish Woman, or Susan Faludi’s recent memoir about her experiences with her Jewish and trans parent, In the Darkroom. If fiction’s more your speed, try Cyntha Ozick’s The Pagan Rabbi, and Other Stories, Linda Grant’s The Clothes on Their Backs, or Anzia Yezierska’s Bread Givers.