Tag: Women

A Black Counternarrative

Master narratives become the background music of our lives, undercurrents so ingrained that the violence they often engender is rendered unremarkable. One master narrative is the tale we tell about ...

Back to the Women’s Land

How do women gain power in a society economically and politically dominated by men? This question vexed mid-20th-century second-wave feminists. At issue was whether women should occupy male spaces or ...

Who Is Sick and Who Is Well?

I might be tempted to describe Terese Mailhot’s new memoir, Heart Berries, as “raw,” had she not warned against it. “The danger politically or artistically is that ...

And the Women Shall Lead Us

Our historical and contemporary images of black nationalism privilege the masculine. This is true whether in distant or recent memory. Images of black men dressed ...

Reading Lives, Writing Lives

My tiny captor sleeps beside me. I don’t know how long it will last, but I welcome such moments of respite. Stolen hours to write, periods in which I feel my foggy ...

Who Is Sick and Who Is Well?

I might be tempted to describe Terese Mailhot’s new memoir, Heart Berries, as “raw,” had she not warned against it. “The danger politically or artistically is that ...

What’s in a Gaze?

Only one authenticated portrait of the three Brontë sisters survives. Completed by their brother, Branwell, around 1834, it was discovered atop a cupboard in 1914. Remarkable as a record of the ...

Guns Were for White Men

This image from the 1773 edition of Mary White Rowlandson’s narrative of her 1675 captivity by Native people presents us with a puzzle, one historian Jill Lepore queried in her influential history of ...

Unsex the Lab

Kit Owens, the protagonist of Megan Abbott’s Give Me Your Hand, is a postdoc in the research lab of academic rock star Dr. Lena Severin; Severin has just received a prestigious research grant when Kit’s ...

We See You, Race Women

When I was in graduate school, whenever a black woman scholar presented her work a peculiar phenomenon emerged: peers always and only remarked on the speaker’s person, rather than on her ideas. At ...

Purgatory Is for Real

If heaven, as the Talking Heads lyric puts it, is a place where nothing ever happens, it has nevertheless powered numerous books up American best-seller lists. In the past decade, several titles have ...