In Reclaiming Our Space, social worker, activist, and cultural commentator Feminista Jones explores how Black women are changing culture, society, and the landscape of feminism by building digital communities and using social media as powerful platforms. As Jones reveals, some of the best-loved devices of our shared social media language are a result of Black women’s innovations, from well-known movement-building hashtags (#BlackLivesMatter, #SayHerName, and #BlackGirlMagic) to the now ubiquitous use of threaded tweets as a marketing and storytelling tool.
For some, these online dialogues provide an introduction to the work of Black feminist icons like Angela Davis, Barbara Smith, bell hooks, and the women of the Combahee River Collective. For others, this discourse provides a platform for continuing their feminist activism and scholarship in a new, interactive way. Complex conversations around race, class, and gender that have been happening behind the closed doors of academia for decades are now becoming part of the wider cultural vernacular—one pithy tweet at a time.
With these important online conversations, not only are Black women influencing popular culture and creating sociopolitical movements; they are also galvanizing a new generation to learn and engage in Black feminist thought and theory, and inspiring change in communities around them. Hard-hitting, intelligent, incisive, yet bursting with humor and pop-culture savvy, Reclaiming Our Space is a survey of Black feminism’s past, present and future, and explains why intersectional movement building will save us all.
Praise for Reclaiming Our Space:
“If you want to understand the rising preeminence of black women in our modern day sociopolitical landscape, you would be smart to start with Feminista Jones, a black woman writing and working at the forefront of our movements.”
— Ijeoma Oluo, author of the New York Times bestseller So You Want To Talk About Race
“Reclaiming Our Space is an invaluable contribution to long-overdue conversations about race, gender, and intersectionality in America. Feminista Jones combines empathy and wisdom with intellectual rigor and historical analysis to explain clearly and compellingly the central role that Black feminists play in the fight for democracy and social justice.”
—Soraya Chemaly, director of the Women’s Media Center Speech Project and author of Rage Becomes Her
“As often as I find myself disillusioned by today’s political climate, Feminista Jones reminds us that Black women have always been and continue to be at the forefront of social change both online and IRL. Reclaiming Our Space is a thorough and accessible history of Black feminism that reflects on our past as a means of encouraging us to move toward a better future.”
—Franchesca Ramsey, host of MTV Decoded and author of Well, That Escalated Quickly: Memoirs and Mistakes of an Accidental Activist