Celebrating Women’s History Month

In 1980, the National Women’s History Project successfully gained national recognition for Women’s History Week, issued by President Jimmy Carter. Women’s History Month, later established by Congress in 1987, commemorates the central role of women in American history and contemporary culture.1

From biographies of women activists to histories of feminist art movements, our Women’s History Month reading list contains ten compelling works to read this month and beyond.

Merze Tate
The Global Odyssey of a Black Woman Scholar

Barbara D. Savage

A powerful and inspiring biography of Merze Tate, a trailblazing Black woman scholar and intrepid world traveler

Betty Friedan
Magnificent Disrupter

Rachel Shteir

Finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award in Biography

A new portrait of Betty Friedan, the author and activist acclaimed as the mother of second-wave feminism

Vagabond Princess
The Great Adventures of Gulbadan

Ruby Lal

A captivating biography of one of the world’s greatest adventurers, the itinerant Mughal Princess Gulbadan, based on her long-forgotten memoir

Talking Back
Native Women and the Making of the Early South

Alejandra Dubcovsky

A pathbreaking look at Native women of the early South who defined power and defied authority

Women Artists Together
Art in the Age of Women’s Liberation

Amy Tobin

A fresh perspective on collaboration, collectivity, and conflict in the women’s art movement of the 1970s

Women, Work, and Politics
The Political Economy of Gender Inequality

Torben Iversen and Frances McCall Rosenbluth

The first book to integrate the micro-level of families with the macro-level of national institutions

The American History of an Idea

Lillian Faderman

A comprehensive history of the struggle to define womanhood in America, from the seventeenth to the twenty-first century

The Women’s Khutbah Book
Contemporary Sermons on Spirituality and Justice from around the World

Sa’diyya Shaikh and Fatima Seedat

A first-ever collection of contemporary Muslim women’s khutbahs (sermons) drawing on their social, religious, and spiritual experiences and framed by original reflections on an emerging Muslim feminist ethics

Women in Intelligence
The Hidden History of Two World Wars

Helen Fry

A groundbreaking history of women in British intelligence, revealing their pivotal role across the first half of the twentieth century

Nancy Elizabeth Prophet
I Will Not Bend

Edited by Sarah Ganz Blythe, Dominic Molon and Kajette Solomon

Exploring the career and legacy of the artist Nancy Elizabeth Prophet, whose sculptural figures embody her uncompromising sovereignty over her work and life

  1. History Women’s History Month, The Women’s History Museum. ↩︎

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