The Free Black Women's Library Reading Challenge
This year, Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity is partnering with Office of Multicultural Affairs and Raven Book Store to uplift the voices of Black women, femme, and nonbinary writers by participating in The Free Black Women's Library annual reading challenge.
The Free Black Women's Library (TFBWL) is a social art project and interactive installation that features a traveling collection of over three thousand books, as well as monthly free public programming that explores a wide array of themes, subjects and ideas that explore the intersections of race, gender, art, class and culture. The mission of this project is to center and celebrate the brilliance, diversity and creativity of Black womanhood. In addition to offering literary guidance and support to readers, scholars and educators, the library also distributes mutual aid grants to single Black mothers via the Sister Outsider Relief Grant.
On January 18th, OlaRonke Akinmowo (she/her), creator and director of The Free Black Women's Library, joined Bulaong Ramiz-Hall (she/her), director of Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity, in kicking off our The Free Black Women's Library 2021 Reading Challenge Video Series with a conversation about TFBWL on Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
Starting January 26th, join us biweekly on Instagram for The Free Black Women's Library 2021 Reading Challenge Video Series, a series of live videos featuring Black women, femme, and nonbinary people at KU reading excerpts from books that fit within the categories outlined in The Free Black Women's Library's 2021 Reading Challenge.
Engage with these live videos on Instagram by liking or commenting, and we will enter your name in a raffle to win a copy of the book featured in the video!
Additionally, we are adding a copy of each featured book to both Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity's Dr. Toni Morrison Memorial Library and the Office of Multicultural Affairs Library.
TUESDAYS, 12 - 1 PM CST
A book on Parenting or Child Advocacy
Bulaong Ramiz-Hall (she/her) reading from Revolutionary Mothering: Love on the Front Lines edited by Alexis Pauline Gumbs, China Martens, and Mai’a Williams
A book on Body Politics, Trauma, Autonomy or Acceptance
Rinne-Julie Früster (they/them) reading from The Body Is Not An Apology: The Power of Radical Self-Love by Sonya Renee Taylor
A book on self-care, health, lifestyle strategy or personal development
Kyia McDonald (she/her) reading from Black Girl in Love (with Herself): A Guide to Self-Love, Healing, and Creating the Life You Truly Deserve by Trey Anthony
A book with a one word title
Precious Porras (she/her) reading from Passing by Nella Larsen
A collection of poetry, short stories, essays, recipes or prose
Simone Savannah (she/her) reading from Difficult Women by Roxane Gay
A book on Spirituality, Religion, Faith or Ritual
Niya McAdoo (she/her) reading from Working the Roots: Over 400 Years of Traditional African American Healing by Michele Elizabeth Lee
Any book by Toni Morrison
Alexis Davis (she/her) reading from The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
A young adult or middle schooler's novel
Nikita Haynie (she/her) reading from Grown by Tiffany D. Jackson
CALL FOR READERS: SUMMER & FALL 2021
This Summer and Fall, we are continuing to invite Black women, femmes, and nonbinary folx at KU — students, staff, faculty, and alums — to participate in our TFBWL 2021 Reading Challenge Video Series.
If you would like to volunteer as a reader, please use our SIGN-UP SHEET to pick a reading category (1 per person) and book title.
We will purchase four copies of your book of choice:
- One as a gift to you, our reader
- One to raffle off to a person who engages with your video on Instagram
- One to add to ETCWGE’s Dr. Toni Morrison Memorial Library with a book plate that honors you as our reader
- One to add to OMA’s library with a book plate that honors you as our reader