Women's History Month and Women of Color Day

Yesterday marked the beginning of Women’s History Month and today is Women of Color Day.

Which is cool because I’ve been thinking about Octavia Butler a lot over the last days since her death. What a trailblazer Butler was. As a black woman writing in a genre that is still very male and white, she kicked down a lot of doors. Her writing is deft and clever and the weight of what’s between the lines in her books is better than what a lot of people say straight out. Her death is a great loss to the creative world.

Other authors of color who’ve fired my imagination? Sandra Cisneros whose short novel, House on Mango Street remains a favorite some fifteen years after I read it the first time. I wish she’d get more attention, her writing is unique and beautiful.

Isabel Allende – her books, all very different but all amazing, are on my keeper shelf. I remember reading In the House of the Spirits and when I finished it, I put it down for an hour and picked it up and read it again. Daughter of Fortune is a marvelous historical covering a period of time rarely written about in fiction and nearly unheard of from the woman’s perspective.

When it comes to inspiration – Audre Lorde is someone whose words have given me something to hold onto when things get bad or when I’m needing something to push me through.

The sharing of joy, whether physical, emotional, psychic, or intellectual, forms a bridge between the sharers which can be the basis for understanding much of what is not shared between them, and lessens the threat of their difference.

Her writing on sexual identity is insightful and revolutionary.

“We tend to think of the erotic as an easy, tantalizing sexual arousal. I speak of the erotic as the deepest life force, a force which moves us toward living in a fundamental way.”
Maxine Hong Kingston’s Woman Warrior is still a book I pick up and am amazed by. Part memoir, part fairy tale, part cultural history – it’s something that marked my consciousness and continues to feed my imagination.

Amy Tan‘s narrative on family, especially mothers and daughters is beautiful and inspiring.

More women who’ve had a huge impact on my life and identity as a woman and a feminist: bell hooks, Rosa Parks, Sojourner Truth, Delores Huerta, Marian Wright Edelman (who inspired me to go to law school and work on behalf of abused children)

There are many more and I hestitate doing this one entry because I don’t want to make it seem like it’s just a one day thing. Celebrating creativity and passion should happen every day. But I thought it’d be nice to celebrate special today.

I’ll be doing more over the month because I love women. I love being a woman and it’s important to celebrate sisterhood when you can.

4 comments to “Women's History Month and Women of Color Day”

  1. Millenia Black
    March 2nd, 2006 at 10:12 am · Link

    Well said, Lauren. Lovely post. 🙂

  2. Charlene Teglia
    March 2nd, 2006 at 11:00 am · Link

    Great salute to women, Lauren! And congrats on your new release. ; )

  3. Shelley Halima
    March 2nd, 2006 at 5:34 pm · Link

    What an awesome post! I found your blog through another one. I’m going to check out your other posts.

  4. Annalee Blysse
    March 6th, 2006 at 12:54 am · Link

    I have The House of Spirits sitting on my computer tower. I haven’t read it yet! Been meaning to though. That description you gave is best I’ve read to remind me I should. But I’ve seen the movie, so I won’t be that surprised.