In Search of Her Gardens
This is Women’s History Month, right? Why has it taken me this long to represent for the ladies! March’s Women Who Write is special because this month’s reading has been nothing short of spectacular. I’m giving it up for the women of yesterday, today, and tomorrow who change the way we look at writing…the rules, the language, the overall way we write. Take this journey as I connect the past to the future.
On Their Shoulders…
Zora Neale Hurston After reading Their Eyes Were Watching God, I felt a sudden enchantment sweep over me. There was something in the way Hurston created Janie, something in the way she presented how the girl approached love, something that was unrecognizable to me at first. She definitely ushered in this new wave of acknowledging womanhood which focused on the way we spoke, the way we loved, and the way we got to be human beings. I think I’m a different woman after reading Hurston and can’t wait to read more!
Gwendolyn Brooks Reading (and hearing) “We Real Cool” knocked me out! I had only heard of Gwendolyn Brooks in passing and boy am I a fool for not knowing the genius behind the name. Her work is so incredibly refreshing, even today poems like Primer For Black are so incredibly relevant and soul-stirring. With her light to the touch approach to language, her around-the-way cadences in construction, Brooks is bad! Listen to her thoughts on “We Real Cool” and hear her recite it.
Gloria Naylor So, I read The Women of Brewster Place this month, and my goodness what a story! I felt like I was sitting at Naylor’s kitchen table, just listening to her tell me about these seven women who changed her life. This was a remarkable read and I’m looking forward to delving into her other novels. Check out my TIA Talks: The Women of Brewster Place!
I will always be nostalgic for this decade for many reasons but most notably the women who stood in their greatness like these two:
Arundhati Roy The God of Small Things is not an easy, nor pleasant read. As disturbing as it is, there’s an undeniable beauty that seems to be manifested by Roy rather than uncovered. It’s as if she weaves new threads into her characters showing the dark side of being human with lines of gold threaded over the darkness. Check out my TIA Talks: The God of Small Things!
Terry McMillan She alone marks the beginnings of my consciousness to this thing called womanhood. In the 90s, I was always quite observant and aware of the women in my life, and how they were in relations with each other, with men, with children. I can remember the frenzy of “Waiting to Exhale”, the conversations, the hoping that my womanhood would have some resemblance. And though I’ve explored, and continue to explore what it means to be woman, I can acknowledge that for me, it started with McMillan.
Their social media presence isn’t accidental nor is it frivolous. These women write for the attention deficit among us but connect us to a wealth of signifcance, showing us that you don’t have to forget where you come from to have a presence.
Tracy Clayton (@BrokeyMcPoverty) For some serious ab-busting laughs, I count on Tracy’s 140 character humor on Twitter. She’s absolutely hilarious… and smart! Her contributions to Buzzfeed, as well as her personal endeavors such as littleknownblackhistoryfacts prove that though you may laugh, there is a social consciousness that she is also bringing to your awareness.
Heben Nigatu (@heavenrants) Yasss! I stan for her Buzzfeed posts! True story, I just want to be her friend, but in all seriousness Nigatu is the truth. Here’s the moment I knew it… In Defense of Kanye’s Vanity… I dare you to read it and tell me she’s not awesome. Definitely a writer worth following.
Ashley Ford (@iSmashFizzle) Recently got wind of this gem from Franchesca of chescaleigh and already I’m intrigued! She’s a storyteller, in every sense of the word as I’ve found in the few writings I’ve read thus far. Check out her reading list for The Black Feminist in Training! Can’t wait to witness more from her!
So, have you known about these extraordinary women already? Do you have any links or works that deserve special acknowledgement? Share below because I want to devour it all! Thanks for reading and until next time…
Did you see the last few Women Who Write? Check out these fabulous writers too!