On International Women’s Day, we pay tribute to all the women who have shaped our culture, technology, and science. And if you’re as tired as I am of listening to ignorant men boasting while they grab away our rights, you may want to turn down the prattle and listen to our contemporary female voices. Because even right now, women are working themselves to the bone to make the world a kinder and more equal place.
Today, as we should everyday, let’s remember–within memory and ourselves–the strength, intelligence, and beauty of the feminine spirit. In our darkest times, we can always turn to literature to find solace, identification, camaraderie, and a reason for hope.
For the past several months I have been dedicating my reading time to female writers–a “femmefast,” perhaps you could call it. (Poe and George Orwell were in there too, but they asked nicely.) At this point, I have no greater advice to anyone as soul-sickened as I than to immerse in female-identifying literature.
Like my brilliant and kind mentor, Katie Kitamura’s new novel, Separation, the prolific and gut wrenching Zadie Smith’s new novel, Swing Time, or the fearless, escalator-reading poet, Juliet Escoria’s new book, Witch Hunt.
I also still love reading chapters of Jill Lepore’s A Secret History of Wonder Woman, the beloved classic, Women Who Run With the Wolves by Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés, and the bestselling book about the recent science of our sexuality, Come As You Are by Emily Nagoski.
Better yet, visit your nearest small bookstore and ask for these titles or a recommendation!
Also, go call your mother.