Hello LQ readers. If you didn’t already know, today is International Women’s Day, and as a site curated solely by Women-Trans-Femme (WTF), we want to celebrate with you! International Women’s Day honors the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. In 2016 the official UN theme is “Step It Up for Gender Equality” stressing the fight for gender equality and the hopes of reaching parity by 2030 (or earlier, please!)
To celebrate, I (LQMel) asked our contributors to suggest books by or about great women that they think everyone should put on their reading list today. We hope you are inspired by our picks, and let us know in the comments what you would add to the list!
BITCHfest: Ten Years of Cultural Criticism from the Pages of Bitch Magazine
by Lisa Jervis (Editor), Andi Zeisler (Editor), Margaret Cho (Foreword)
Why Bekky Recommends It: BITCH magazine critiques pop culture with a feminist lens and has always been a favorite splurge at the bookstore when I can find it. This book highlights some of the great articles published in BITCH and celebrates women and feminism in a modern context. It may be a lil too radical for some people, but I read it remembering there are several types of feminism.
by Rachel Carson
Why Bekky Recommends It: This is an oldie, but a goodie—Silent Spring or, the book that jump-started the modern environmental movement. Rachel Carson was a naturalist and scientist who revealed through her book, Silent Spring, the negative effects of pesticides towards the natural world and humans. You want a strong, smart feminist icon? Rachel Carson is your person.
The Handmaid’s Tale
by Margaret Atwood
Why Whit Recommends It: I chose The Handmaid’s Tale not because it highlights the achievements of women per se, but it gives a terrifying picture of what may happen if those economic, political, and social achievements are minimized or taken away.
Cohn-Head: A No-Holds-Barred Account of Breaking Into the Boys’ Club
by Linda Cohn
Why Becky Recommends It: The life story of the now-famous ESPN anchor Linda Cohn is one of many that have made my career in the sports industry possible. Cohn was a pioneer in sports journalism, and this book is a witty and engaging account of her struggle to gain respect in a male-dominated field. She and a handful of peers made it socially acceptable for a woman to not only be an anchor behind the sports desk, but to handle locker room interviews and provide quality content as well.
Rad American Women A-Z: Rebels, Trailblazers, and Visionaries Who Shaped Our History…and Our Future!
by Kate Schatz, Miriam Klein Stahl (Illustrations)
Why Mel Recommends It: This is technically a kids’ book, but is a great book for any age—I loved it. I bought this as a gift for my friend’s Rad newborn daughter. I think every WTF (age 0-150) should grow up with this book as inspiration for all of the things she/they can be and do (and I don’t just mean as a career). It even includes, as letter “X”, all the women “we haven’t learned about yet, and the women whose stories we will never read.”