Badass Literary Babes: Know My Name; The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo

By Emily Park

A year ago, I rediscovered my love for books. Since then, I have devoured over 20,000 pages of memoirs, fantasies, contemporary fictions and romances, and historical fictions.

Last month, I decided I would turn my reading obsession into something tangible. So, I started sharing some of the Badass Babes I’ve met between the pages. 

In the first installment of Badass Literary Babes, I started with the very first two characters I met when I started reading again. I thought I would continue along this timeline, but my hunger has only grown in the last month. 

I finish an average of two books a week, and I have a to-be-read list of over 320 books. If I continue going down the line in order of the books I have read, I don’t think I will ever catch up, and I’m scared I’ll forget just how badass these babes are. So, I’m going to switch it up and share Badass Babes from an older favorite and a recent favorite read.

Continue reading

Badass Literary Babes: Educated & Where the Crawdads Sing

By Emily Park

Before the pandemic hit, I could count the number of books I read for my own enjoyment (at least since I graduated from high school in 2015) on one hand.

When I was a child, I almost always had my nose in a book. I read from the time I got home from school, to the time I fell asleep. I read up in the tree in my backyard. I read nestled in my bedroom closet. I read under the covers with a flashlight. I read under my desk at school. Book after book. 

As I grew up and got distracted by other things, I lost that hunger for books that I used to have. But over the last year, I have found it again, and I have met some inspiring, strong, badass babes among those pages—both real and fictional—I’m excited to tell you about.

In this first installment of Badass Literary Babes, I’ll introduce you to the first two babes I met when I started my rediscovery of literature last year.

Continue reading

Book Review: Feminism is for Everybody

By Max Sheffield-Baird

Max has started a book club! Every month they’re reviewing one book that educates on intersectionality. Next month, Max is reading Sister Outsider by Audre Lorde. Feel free to join in!

I chose Feminism is for Everybody to start off this feminist book series because it’s a short read. Author Bell Hooks states the purpose of her book is to make feminism accessible and to dispel the notions that feminism is inherently anti-men—which the patriarchy has drummed into popular consciousness for decades now. 

I’m not sure how well she succeeded. 

The tone feels academic and dry. I would consider it a good primer for those looking to do a serious study on gender, race, class, and other aspects to kyriarchy (Psst, kyriarchy encompasses all social systems of oppression we face). But it doesn’t feel like it’s meant for the masses. People who are just looking to get a quick FAQ on intersectional feminism might want to look elsewhere.

Continue reading

Uzazi Village is nurturing Black mothers and birthing bodies, and fighting health inequities in Kansas City

By Kelcie McKenney

Sandra Thornhill came to Uzazi Village in 2018 when she was pregnant with her son Jerren Junior. 

“That’s where I met the co-founder and CEO of Uzazi Village, Mama Hakima,” Thornhill said of Uzazi Executive Director Hakmia Tafunzi Payne. She had stopped by for a labor and delivery class and got to talking to Payne about where she wanted to give birth. At the time, Thornhill wanted to have a home birth, but felt like going to the hospital was easier. 

“But [Payne], being the true, authentic, warrior sister that she is, called me out,” Thornhill recalled. It turned into an hour long conversation about the autonomy of Thornhill’s body and that she had every right to determine how she wanted her birth to take place.

“Two years later, that has taken me on a journey to always question, ‘Am I being the most true and authentic?’” Thornhills said. “So after having my son, who is a boy, I realized that my first child would be a Black male. And looking at the climate of the existence and history of Black men in America—not only in America, because I’ve traveled internationally—and seeing how the Black male was treated, that made me realize I don’t want him to have to wait until he’s 27 or 28 to realize that your voice matters.”

Continue reading

Promising Young Woman is a Revenge Movie, But It’s Also a Tragedy

By Abby Olcese
Originally published on thepitchkc.com

Forgiveness is a tricky thing. In the church, I was taught that we’re supposed to forgive the people who do us wrong. Simple enough in Sunday school—you take my cookie, I might get mad, but it’s not a huge deal.

I can forgive you. I’m still a Christian, and I still believe in forgiveness.

As I’ve gotten older, however, I’ve come to understand that it looks different when the transgression is more complicated than taking my Oreo during snack time. 

In Christianity, asking God for forgiveness comes with the understanding that you’re not going to blindly commit the same sin again. When we forgive others, the same sense of grace is present. We forgive not to diminish the fact we were hurt—wrong is still wrong—but because we’re hoping the person we forgive understands the consequences of their actions, and is sorry. It’s a healing process that’s meant to go both ways.

Emerald Fennell’s Promising Young Woman is an exploration of what can happen to a victimized person when there is no atonement.

Continue reading