Well Read Black Girl is a community empowering black women that read and showcasing black women voices in literature. Glory Edim started Well Read Black Girl because of the discussions she would share with black women about their favorite authors and writers. In her book, she mentioned that she “wanted a place to build on the radical notion that Black women can read, write, and be whatever and whomever they desire.” She wanted book discussions to continue and created a platform to empower others but specifically black women.
The Well Read Black Girl instagram and Blog was created in 2015 and has grown to becoming a movement where festivals have been created, hashtags have been made, women have been influenced and a book by the founder has been written. Well Read Black Girl is now a book that is an anthology of black female writer voices. The book is a collection of essays from different black female writers telling their truth about literature and writing. I purchased the book Well Read Black Girl and patiently waited to read the stories from well known black writers about their love of reading and what influenced them.
I wanted to create my post today to tell you what I learned since I have read Well Read Black Girl By Glory Edim and what you could possibly take away from the book as well. The book is something that I wanted to talk about because it was a book that was needed and something that I believe anyone can learn from.
Lesson 1: Literature is a way to explore but also a way to feel connected to the world. Many black women have had similar times where they wanted to see themselves in a book because it made them connect to the book more. I thought I was alone in the idea of wanting to read literature where I could read about a main character that had brown skin, braids and could take on the world. But, I have realized that many black women have wanted to read about themselves and have their stories told in different books.
Lesson 2: There is literature for everyone and every walk of life. In the words of Toni Morrison, “If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” Many black female writers have been influenced by profound writers and they went forward to create the literature that they wanted to see as well. The authors used in this book created literature that showed a piece of them but also the lives of other black women and people.
Lesson 3: Alice Walker, Toni Morrison, Maya Angelou, and many other profound black female writers have influenced many people. Everyone has their own story on how they learned about black female writers and their books but also what they learned from each writer. The story of Celie, plots created by Morrison and the life of Angelou have impacted many readers and they hold a special place in the lives of many black women. But, one of the reasons that these writers created such an impact is because they gave power to so many lives of the people that read their books.
Lesson 4: Everyone has unique stories of how they first fell in love into reading. Each author chosen in Well Read Black Girl gave their personal story on their first memories of reading. But, I realized over the years that every person has their own colorful experiences of what brought them into the world of reading. Literature is a different experience for every reader.
Lesson 5: Last, but not least, representation in literature is needed. Everyone is a walking novel and deserves to be represented in literature. There needs to be books including people of color, the LGBQT community, characters with mental illness, all cultures, and diverse ideas. Diversity means to have a variety of something and I believe that in literature there should not be one style of writing, plots and characters. But, a diversity of representations.
There is so much to learn about the world around us but also worlds created by writers. After finishing Well Read Black Girl, I realized that books mean different things for each person that reads them. But, there are many people that connect to a book the same way I do especially when it comes to seeing black females represented in literature. Glory Edim created a book that she wanted to see in the world and gave more power to the black female writers and readers in the world. I took many lessons from this book but overall I realized that literature gives a voice for us as readers.
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