I’m all for International Women’s Day, but I often wonder why we can’t express our hopes, fears, angers and triumphs like we do on March 8, in the same way every day of the year.
FEED posted a quote on Instagram last week from Arundhait Roy that so poignantly speaks to what I can almost feel in the air lately. “Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing.”
My hope is that the coming of this new world grows a little louder day by day as more women raise their voices with written, painted, sung and filmed words. In an effort to keep our ears alert as we move beyond the noise of #IWD, I decided to share a list of women who have both inspired and challenged me recently, and whose messages I want to internalize and amplify this month and beyond.
Mari Andrew’s Instagram account is a daily breath of fresh air and humor. A writer and illustrator living in Washington, D.C., she posts daily hand-drawn comics that exude optimism, honesty and vulnerability.
Ava DuVernay’s documentary for Netflix, 13th, about mass incarceration and the history of racial inequality in the United States, is not an experience you will easily forget - nor should you. While extremely challenging, I can’t recommend it enough.
If only I could unread The Mothers so I could read it ten more times. Poignant, female-centric and incredibly moving, The Mothers is now a permanent fixture on my all-time favorite books list.
I know you probably think the last thing you need is another email subscription, but honestly, there are few emails I look forward to more than Lenny Letter (except, of course, FEED newsletters, which are pretty fantastic). A collaborative effort between millennial icons Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner, these twice-weekly emails deliver diverse, feminist essays on every topic from health to politics to friendship.
As someone who never tires of NPR and the nostalgic power of radio, I love to start my day with Terry Gross’s Fresh Air podcasts. Featuring intimate conversations about some of today’s most important topics, I always learn something new from Terry’s interviews.
Capturing ‘the art of being a woman,’ Darling Magazine aims to break down the ideals of unattainable beauty, over-sexualization, gossip and self-destructive narratives that are so commonplace in so much of what we read. I love how Darling celebrates beauty in every woman.
Yaa Gyasi’s Homegoing is a multi-generational family saga that opens with the story of two-half sisters, separated by the destructive forces of slavery. Educational and enlightening, Yaa had me in her grip from the very first page of her debut novel.
A compilation of more than 400 recipes and variations from Julia Turshen, Small Victories is funny, encouraging and beautifully curated. Also, if my endorsement isn’t enough, Ina Garten is a big proponent of this book (she wrote the foreword), so it has to be good.
It was great to see increased recognition for diverse, female-centric films in last month’s award show circuit. My personal favorite, Hidden Figures, tells the untold story of three women of color who worked for NASA, and were the brains behind the launch of astronaut John Glenn into space. You will laugh, you will cry, and you will leave the theater with a story to tell about three incredible female heroes who’s stories needed to be told.
No list of strong, empowering female voices in 2017 is truly complete without mention of Beyoncé or Solange. This month – and I don’t foresee it stopping anytime soon – Solange Knowles' album A Seat at the Table is on repeat in my apartment, my office, my walk to work, basically everywhere I go. Described by Solange as a project on identity, empowerment, independence, grief and healing, it is truly a triumph.