Women’s History Month Books Guide: 10 Great Reads by Graduate Center Faculty and Alumni

Books by Graduate Center faculty and alumni.

Tough examinations of hard questions, deep looks into the lives of women of the past and of today, and a pandemic book by a mother-daughter writing team who take the long view of pandemics ⎯ these Graduate Center professors and alumni have you covered:

Katherine Manthorne and the cover of her book, Restless Enterprise: The Art and Life of Eliza Pratt Greatorex
1. Restless Enterprise, by Professor Katherine Manthorne (Art History), profiles the most famous American artist you never heard of: Eliza Pratt Greatorex, a 19th century landscape painter and graphic artist. 

Tsedale M. Melaku and the cover of her book, You Don't Look Like a Lawyer

2. You Don’t Look Like a Lawyer: Black Women and Systemic Gendered Racism, by Tsedale Melaku (Ph.D. ’16, Sociology), takes an in-depth look at the real lives of Black women in law firms, showing the challenges they face as a result of institutional practices.

Meena Alexander and the cover of her book, Fault Lines

3. Fault Lines, by the poet and essayist Professor Meena Alexander, is an evocative memoir of one woman’s journey as a writer, and was reissued last year on the two-year anniversary of her passing

Julie Suk and the cover of her book, We the Women: The Unstoppable Mothers of the Equal Rights Amendment

4. We the Women: The Unstoppable Mothers of the Equal Rights Amendment, by Professor Julie Suk (Sociology), delves into the decades-long, ongoing fight to add the ERA to the Constitution. 

Bianca Williams and the cover of her book, The Pursuit of Happiness

5. The Pursuit of Happiness: Black Women, Diasporic Dreams and the Politics of Emotional Transnationalism, by Professor Bianca C. Williams (Psychology, Anthropology) follows middle-aged Black women on their repeated trips to Jamaica to show what tourism can teach us about racial identity.  

Wendy Luttrell and the cover of her book, Children Framing Childhoods: Working -Class Kids Visions of Care

6. Children Framing Childhoods, by Professor Wendy Luttrell (Urban Education), shows how children experience growing up in working-class immigrant families, and reveals the essential work done by two groups of women: mothers and teachers. 

Linda Grasso and the cover of her book, Equal under the Sky: Georgia O'Keefe and 20th Century Feminism

7. Equal under the Sky: Georgia O'Keeffe and Twentieth-Century Feminism, by Professor Linda M. Grasso (GC/York College, English), charts O’Keeffe’s complicated and sometimes contradictory relationship with feminist movements from the 1910s to the 1970s.

Rae-Ellen Kavey and Allison B. Kavey and the cover of their book, Viral Pandemics: From Smallpox to COVID-19

8. Viral Pandemics: From Smallpox to COVID-19, by mother-daughter writing team Professor Allison B. Kavey (GC/John Jay, History) Rae-Ellen Kavey, M.D., puts our current crisis in perspective, and demonstrates how the history of viruses is essentially the history of public health.

Elissa Bemporad and the cover of her book, Legacy of Blood: Jews, Pogroms, and Ritcual Murder in the Lands of the Soviets

9. Legacy of Blood: Jews, Pogroms, and Ritual Murder in the Lands of the Soviets, by Professor Elissa Bemporad (GC/Queens College; History), is an award-winning and deeply researched account of anti-Jewish violence, particularly against women, that informs our current political moment. 

Virginia Valian and the cover of her book, An Inclusive Academy: Achieving Diversity and Excellence

10. An Inclusive Academy: Achieving Diversity and Excellence, by Distinguished Professor Virginia Valian (GC/Hunter; Psychology, Linguistics, Speech-Language-Hearing Sciences/ Psychology), outlines ways to change recruitment, hiring, and evaluation policies to make the academy a more diverse place. 

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Submitted on: MAR 3, 2021

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