Gender & Sexuality, History, Reading list

Women’s History Month—Recommended Readings

In honor of International Women’s Day (March 8) and Women’s History Month throughout March, we’ve put together a list of some of our favorite books by or about extraordinary women. This is just to get you started—there are many more great titles to be found throughout our latest catalog and subject lists.

“Read with caution: midway through The Dead Ladies Project you’ll be wanting to pack a suitcase and give away your possessions. Crispin is funny, sexy, self-lacerating, and politically attuned, with unique slants on literary criticism, travel writing, and female journeys. No one crosses genres, borders, and proprieties with more panache.”
—Laura Kipnis, author of Men: Notes from an Ongoing Investigation

“Behind Nelson’s cool rhetoric lurks an exciting thinker . . . . Raising the question of toughness as a methodology and style is compelling and timely, especially at a time when women are both assuming more powerful roles in public life and having to fight against hostile stereotypes. Nelson is intellectually tough enough to take on these six case studies.”—Times Literary Supplement

“Here, in taut, fascinating prose filled with quotes from writings of all sorts from the era, Mickenberg limns the many intrepid women who finagled their way into Russia, starting in the late nineteenth century, to help with everything that needed to be done, and that was a lot.  . . . Though success stories are here, so is much disillusionment, as the reality failed to meet the promise.”—Booklist

“What a remarkable intellectual and aesthetic feast it is! Multifaceted, rich in the history of both art and spirituality, the book presents the abstract work of Swedish artist Hilma af Klint. Klint is known for having produced abstract art many years in advance of the formal Abstract art movement. Notes and Methods not only reproduces her strikingly immersive artwork but also brings to life its unexpected spiritual underpinnings in the Theosophy movement.”—Publishers Weekly

Big Bosses shows the importance of female subcultures among women workers, the significance of personal bonds of female friendship. It shows how challenging it was for women to forge lives of their own in an era when the vote was newly secured but when other basic rights for women, such as credit and property ownership in their own names, would be contested for decades to come. . . . Big Bosses stands as a real contribution to our understanding of the history of working women in Jazz Age America.”—Wall Street Journal

“Neither a historical account of feminism nor an attempt to provide a comprehensive overview of the various strands of feminist thought. Rather, it focuses on a number of central themes—domination, rights, work, femininity, sex and culture—around which feminist thought and mobilization have revolved and about which feminists continue to debate and disagree. Cameron skillfully presents the divergent ways that feminist thought and the women’s movement have approached these issues.”
Times Higher Education