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There is so much to celebrate about being a woman, so it’s important to always celebrate the amazing contributions that females make to society, politics, culture, the arts, and more. However, it wasn’t always that way, and even though we still have work to be done, it’s time to give credit to the feminists who paved the way. We’ve rounded up 10 must-read books celebrating feminism through short stories.
Life and Other Shortcomings by Corie Adjmi
This collection of twelve short stories covers the lives of different women from 1970 to the present day. As they navigate through different places, such as New York City, New Orleans, and all the way to Madrid, their lives shift with every choice they make. While some get jobs and others don’t, some get married while others divorce; this book gives you an inside look at what it truly means to be a woman, both in a relationship with someone else as well as herself. Spanning history to current times, Corie examines the patriarchy and the #MeToo movement, giving an honest look at the female experience.
Contemporary Feminism and Women’s Short Stories by Emma Young
This book takes a poignant look at what it truly feels like to live life as a woman. Through these short stories, the subjects of marriage, motherhood and sexuality are discussed honestly and openly, with an emphasis on how females are affected today. In addition, they navigate through domesticity, femininity and masculinity, and offer insight into how these ideas shape what our lives are supposed to look like. With a variety of contemporary authors, Emma Young features a full spectrum of issues and how they impact feminism today.
Objects of Desire by Clare Sestanovich
These eleven compelling stories showcase the space between, from a woman standing on the edge of adulthood, to a place where choices seem to be limited. Highlighting that magical space between twenty and thirty—where everything seems possible—to settling into middle age—where many women can feel stuck—this book does an exceptional job of portraying what it feels like to be a female at any stage. Whether you are just starting in life or ready to make a new start, these stories show how each decision matters. This page-turner will make you both laugh and cry, but most of all, relate.
Badly Behaved Women by Anna-Marie Crowhurst
In covering the past 100 years of the women’s movement, this book has it all. Starting with suffrage and bra burning to body positivity and #MeToo, this is truly a modern-day history book. As it takes you back in time to the early days of the women’s movement when females had finally earned their right to vote, it’s amazing to see how far we’ve come, and offers up a sense of celebration to commemorate over a century of hard work. With personal interviews and breathtaking photography, this is one that is deserving of a place on your bookshelf.
A Woman’s Story by Francine Rodriguez
These are the heart-wrenching true stories about a select group of Latina women and their daily lives. Oftentimes faced with gender bias and feeling powerless, these women discuss how the history of their culture has shaped their experiences in this modern world. Besides being brutally honest about the nitty-gritty, these ladies also open up about what empowers them, and what makes life as they experience it sustainable. Francine provides an honest look, depicting the good and the bad, delivering a raw and emotional account of real women living challenging lives.
The Soul of a Woman by Isabel Allende
Isabel Allende knew she was a feminist from the age of five. As she witnessed her mom’s husband walk out on her and her three children, she knew that being strong was the only choice there was. As she got older and experienced the second wave of feminism in the 1960s, she knew that it was her true calling to stand up for women’s issues. Throughout the years, she has experienced marriage and divorce herself multiple times and has used the experiences to come into her power. The mission of her stories is to show other women that they deserve to live in peace, and above all, be loved.
Extraordinary Women In History by Leah Gail
This book is all about honoring legendary female heroes. Throughout history, there have been many trailblazers that have paved the way for women today, but unfortunately, we don’t hear about them nearly as much as we do about men from the past. This collection of stories will change that narrative, uncovering the incredible lives of 70 brilliant women who broke barriers and changed the game. From activists to artists and daredevils to leaders, Leah Gail does an excellent job of honoring extraordinary women that never gave up. Her goal is to empower the reader to take action and do the same!
Voices of Powerful Women by Zoe Sallis
This empowering collection is one-of-a-kind with its question-and-answer format. Forty women are asked ten questions, and each answer is both profound and inspiring. With a variety of subjects, topics range from life inspirations, greatest fears, and advice for the younger generation, just to name a few. Zoe Sallis interviewed women of all different backgrounds, including world leaders, entrepreneurs, and even Nobel Peace prize winners. Additionally, she featured musicians, humanitarians, and artists to provide a robust look at the life of a woman from all angles. With optimism and hope, this book is a must-read.
Tell Her She Can’t by Kelly Lewis
Throughout history, women have been told that they can’t do something, only to turn around and prove everyone wrong. This is a book that celebrates just that! Kelly Lewis has compiled the true stories of 35 women who didn’t listen to the critics and made their dreams come true. Not only does she tell their stories, but she weaves in tips and tools for how you can do it, too. You’ll learn how to turn challenges into opportunities, create strategies, and breakthrough barriers that stand in the way. This empowering book provides a punch of positivity for women of all ages.
The Office of Historical Corrections by Danielle Evans
This collection of stories takes a deep dive into the complexity of race, relationships, and who gets to slant the narrative. Author Danielle Evans’ approach is to zero in on specific moments that these characters experienced, and dissect them on a level that exposes larger issues of culture and history. The experiences of her subjects are eye-opening and show life from a completely different perspective. Both unexpected and relatable, this variety of jaw-dropping stories will get the reader to see things from another person’s point of view, invoking empathy and understanding.