Intersectional Readings that Fuel the Rage and Bring the Healing

In these times of perpetual state violence and racial unrest, here are some black feminist books that have addressed these issues through the intersections of race, gender, and class. Some are classic texts, some are new ones just coming out this year.


Alexander, Michelle. The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness. The New Press, 2012.

Crenshaw, Kimberle.  Black Girls Matter: Pushed Out, Overpoliced and Unprotected.  African American Policy Forum, 2015.

Cohen, Cathy J.  Democracy Remixed: Black Youth and the Future of American Politics.  Oxford UP, 2010.

Collins, Patricia Hill.  Fighting Words: Black Women and the Search for Justice. University of Minnesota Press, 1998.

Cox, Aimee Meredith.  Shapeshifters: Black Girls and the Choreography of Citizenship.  Duke UP, 2015.

Davies, Carole Boyce.  Left of Karl Marx: The Political Life of Black Communist Claudia Jones.  Duke UP, 2008.

Davis, Angela.  Are Prisons Obsolete? Seven Stories Press, 2003.

Gilmore, Ruth Wilson.  The Golden Gulag: Prisons, Surplus, Crisis, and Opposition in Globalizing California.  UC Press, 2007.

Gross, Kali N.  Colored Amazons: Crime, Violence, and Black Women in the City of Brotherly Love, 1880-1910.  Duke UP, 2006.

Harris-Perry, Melissa.  Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America.  Yale UP, 2011.

INCITE! Women of Color against Vioelnce, eds.  The Color of Violence: An INCITE! Anthology.  South End Press, 2006.

James, Joy.  Resisting State Violence: Radicalism, Gender, and Race in U.S. Culture.  University of Minnesota Press, 1996.

________.  Shadowboxing: Representations of Black Feminist Politics.  Palgrave Macmillan, 2002.

LeFlouria, Talitha L. Chained in Silence: Black Women and Convict Labor in the New South.  UNC Press, 2015.

Lorde, Audre.  Sister Outsider: Essays & Speeches.  Freedom Press, 1984.

Richie, Beth E.  Compelled to Crime: The Gender Entrapment of Battered Black Women. Routledge: 1996.

_________.  Arrested Justice: Black Women, Violence, and America’s Prison Nation.  NYU Press, 2012.

Shakur, Assata.  Assata: An Autobiography.  Lawrence Hill Books, 2001.

Sudbury, Julia, ed. Global Lockdown: Race, Gender, and the Prison Industrial Complex.  Routledge, 2005.

Wells, Ida. B. Southern Horrors and Other Writings: the Anti-Lynching Campaign of Ida B. Wells, 1892-1900, ed. Jacqueline Jones Royster.  Bedford/St. Martin, 1996.

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Janell Hobson

Janell Hobson is an Associate Professor of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at the University at Albany, State University of New York. She is the author of Venus in the Dark: Blackness and Beauty in Popular Culture (Routledge, 2005, 2nd ed. 2018) and Body as Evidence: Mediating Race, Globalizing Gender (SUNY Press, 2012). She also writes and blogs for Ms. Magazine. Follow her on Twitter@JProfessor.