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Women’s History Month Information & Resources

Women’s History Month is observed annually in March to recognize and celebrate their achievements and contributions.

Jump to the Library's Women's History Resource List

B.D. Owens Library: Monthly Resource List

Women's History Month is observed annually in March to recognize and celebrate their achievements and contributions. Below is a selected list of books available at the B.D. Owen’s Library.

(Thanks to Brandy Brady and Hallie Laning)



Dare to lead like a girl : how to survive and thrive in the corporate jungle / Dalia Feldheim

A holistic look at how to achieve purpose and joy at work. It is about turning the world of work into a place where empathy, intuition, passion, and resilience take their rightful place, where women can lead like women and men can tap into their more feminine leadership traits and dare to lead (more) like a girl!"

The political life and times of Matilda Joslyn Gage: activist, historian, publisher, writer / Mary E. Corey.

In the early years of women's history research, Matilda Joslyn Gage was buried in superlatives. She was deemed "the most logical, scientific and fearless writer of her day," and one of the "best-known writers of the day." She's admired for being "one of the most scholarly of them all," and "one of the most effective and forceful woman's rights lecturers," and "one of the most important of all nineteenth-century feminist historians."

The Divorce Colony: How Women Revolutionized Marriage and Found Freedom on the American Frontier / April White

White discusses the phenomenon of migratory divorce in late nineteenth-century Sioux Falls. She focuses on a handful of wealthy white women who sought divorce for reasons ranging from adultery to cruelty to moral turpitude. The South Dakota city had one of the laxer divorce laws in the country, requiring only a 90-day residency. An outspoken bishop, William Hare, was vexed by its reputation as a “Divorce Colony” and succeeded in a campaign to tighten restrictions, eventually expanding the residency requirement to a year. By the 1930s, Nevada, particularly Reno, had supplanted Sioux Falls as the go-to destination for a quickie divorce. More and more women refused to forsake their own happiness or settle for a partnership in which they were subjugated, which was reflected in the country’s booming divorce rate. The author acknowledges that Black women in particular had only recently been granted a legal right to a recognized marriage, and the right to divorce remained out of reach for those without financial means. Despite the book’s somewhat rarified scope, this is a valuable and intriguing contribution to American social history.

    Trauma-Informed Pedagogy: Addressing Gender-Based Violence in the Classroom/ edited by Jocelyn E. Marshall and Candace Skibba

Gender-based violence is an issue often met with silence, unempathetic discourse, and troublesome visual representation. As educators, mentors, and public facilitators, how can we address this subject in our teaching spaces, curricula, texts, and conversations with greater care and understanding? And, what do we need as resources to cultivate these deeper insights and new roads to increased awareness and dynamic healing? Building decentered and empowering spaces is vital to addressing gender-based violence. In an educational setting, this must take into consideration instructors’, students’, and other professionals’ own histories of and relationships to traumatic experience.

Book Review: Hate Speech against Women Online: Concepts and Countermeasures / Louise Richardson-Self.

Richardson-Self focuses particularly on I social identity power i : where the social imaginary in question inheres in the member of an identity-based group I power-over i another identity-based group, irrespective of whether an individual actually I exercises i that power as an agent (i.e. it can be merely passive, or operate structurally without an agent), and where a plausible case can be made that this capacity to control such a group is unjust.

Nowhere for very long : the unexpected road to an unconventional life / Brianna Madia.

Travel writer Madia recounts the highs and lows of life on the road in her quietly moving debut. As she writes, trading in just about everything for Bertha—her orange van with a “propensity for back roads and breakdowns”—made the difference between a humdrum life and a freewheeling lifestyle in which “fear was celebrated.” In their early 20s, Madia and her future husband Neil left their middle-class Connecticut lives and decamped to Salt Lake City, Utah, in 2012.

White tears brown scars : how white feminism betrays women of colour / Ruby Hamad.

Hamad debuts with a searing and wide-ranging condemnation of "strategic White Womanhood" and "the historical debasement of women of color" in Western culture. Citing her own experiences as an Arab woman working in the "suffocating white Australian media space" and those of other "brown and black women" who have been routinely disbelieved, exoticized, or accused of bullying by white women, Hamad contends that the tears of white women are "a weapon that prevents people of color from being able to assert themselves or to effectively challenge white racism and alter the fundamental inequalities built into the system." She analyzes cultural archetypes, including "the lascivious black Jezebel" and "the submissive China Doll," that inhibit women of color, and compares the actions of "BBQ Beckys" who call the police on Black people for noncrimes to the lynching of Black men for "perceived transgressions against the virtuous bodies of white women." Hamad also documents the exclusion of Black women from the suffrage movement and explains why white women's inroads into white male power structures don't benefit women of color.

Madam C.J. Walker : the making of an American icon / Erica L. Ball.                         

Madam C. J. Walker is reputed to be America's first self-made woman millionaire. Born to former slaves in the Louisiana Delta in the aftermath of the Civil War, married at fourteen, and widowed at twenty, Walker spent the first decades of her life as a laundress. By the time of her death in 1919, however, Walker had refashioned herself into one of the most famous African American figures in the nation: the owner and president of a hair-care empire and a philanthropist wealthy enough to own a country estate near the Rockefellers in the prestigious New York town of Irvington-on-Hudson. -- adapted from back of book.

The daughters of Kobani : a story of rebellion, courage, and justice / Gayle Tzemach Lemmon.

An admiring, almost fawning portrait of women who fought to free Kurdish towns in northern Syria from the control of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, in the late 2010s, this book is a useful illustration of the ideological influence of the Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan, the founder of the militant Kurdistan Workers' Party and a longtime political prisoner in Turkey. It is organized around the biographies of four Syrian Kurdish women as they grow from unruly teenagers into mature, seasoned, and effective military commanders who were instrumental in the liberation not only of the northern city of Kobani but also of Raqqa and other ISIS-controlled areas in Syria. The stories of unseen snipers, booby-trapped buildings, nighttime river crossings--and, more deeply, of self-doubt and heroism--are well crafted.

Live form : women, ceramics, and community / Jenni Sorkin.

Sorkin's book sets out to accomplish three interrelated things. First, she aims to narrate the interlocking histories of ceramics and art in postwar United States through the contributions of three female figures: Marguerite Wildenhain, Mary Caroline (M. C.) Rchards, and Susan Peterson -- women who have been marginalized or simply left out of mainstream craft and art histories. Second, her book endeavors to disrupt the medium-specific rhetoric that dominates craft discourses by positioning ceramics in the language of performance. If analogies can be drawn between the practices of ceramics and theater, poetry, or television, it is because the ceramic classroom is already a space of demonstration; the act of "throwing" a pot, she points out, is a fundamentally performative mode. Third, Sorkin shows how the interdisciplinary communities fostered by the field of ceramics ultimately "set the stage for later, participatory forms of art and feminist collectivism," like Womanhouse.