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Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists: A Graphic History of Women's Fight for Their Rights

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A bold and gripping graphic history of the fight for women's rights The ongoing struggle for women's rights has spanned human history, touched nearly every culture on Earth, and encompassed a wide range of issues, such as the right to vote, work, get an education, own property, exercise bodily autonomy, and beyond. Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists is a fun and A bold and gripping graphic history of the fight for women's rights The ongoing struggle for women's rights has spanned human history, touched nearly every culture on Earth, and encompassed a wide range of issues, such as the right to vote, work, get an education, own property, exercise bodily autonomy, and beyond. Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists is a fun and fascinating graphic novel-style primer that covers the key figures and events that have advanced women's rights from antiquity to the modern era. In addition, this compelling book illuminates the stories of notable women throughout history--from queens and freedom fighters to warriors and spies--and the progressive movements led by women that have shaped history, including abolition, suffrage, labor, civil rights, LGBTQ liberation, reproductive rights, and more. Examining where we've been, where we are, and where we're going, Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists is an indispensable resource for people of all genders interested in the fight for a more liberated future.


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A bold and gripping graphic history of the fight for women's rights The ongoing struggle for women's rights has spanned human history, touched nearly every culture on Earth, and encompassed a wide range of issues, such as the right to vote, work, get an education, own property, exercise bodily autonomy, and beyond. Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists is a fun and A bold and gripping graphic history of the fight for women's rights The ongoing struggle for women's rights has spanned human history, touched nearly every culture on Earth, and encompassed a wide range of issues, such as the right to vote, work, get an education, own property, exercise bodily autonomy, and beyond. Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists is a fun and fascinating graphic novel-style primer that covers the key figures and events that have advanced women's rights from antiquity to the modern era. In addition, this compelling book illuminates the stories of notable women throughout history--from queens and freedom fighters to warriors and spies--and the progressive movements led by women that have shaped history, including abolition, suffrage, labor, civil rights, LGBTQ liberation, reproductive rights, and more. Examining where we've been, where we are, and where we're going, Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists is an indispensable resource for people of all genders interested in the fight for a more liberated future.

30 review for Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists: A Graphic History of Women's Fight for Their Rights

  1. 5 out of 5

    Laurie Anderson

    Should be a standard in classrooms and libraries. There are SO MANY incredible women in this book!!! Put this in the hands of all readers!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Lata

    This was great! Using example after example of woman after woman advocating for: womens rights, worker safety, ability to vote, dismantling of racist and anti-LGBTQ+ laws, accessibility, education, anti-poverty, child protection and peace, the author Mikki Kendall showed how long the struggle has been. It often feels totally fruitless and disheartening, but each snippet about a female figure working hard for change reminded me that change has been happening. And continues to. There are so many This was great! Using example after example of woman after woman advocating for: women’s rights, worker safety, ability to vote, dismantling of racist and anti-LGBTQ+ laws, accessibility, education, anti-poverty, child protection and peace, the author Mikki Kendall showed how long the struggle has been. It often feels totally fruitless and disheartening, but each snippet about a female figure working hard for change reminded me that change has been happening. And continues to. There are so many women whose lives I now want to research, thanks to this overview; a great introduction to how critical women have been at building so many things in societies around the world.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Storme Reads A Lot

    Spot on about feminism! Just wished it had talked more about trans and non-binary people. Still, an amazing comic and a must for all libraries where young people are. I cant believe this isnt required for all because its just that darned good! The illustrations are gorgeous and the storytelling is phenomenal. I love this so much, and I hope everyone reads it! Spot on about feminism! Just wished it had talked more about trans and non-binary people. Still, an amazing comic and a must for all libraries where young people are. I can’t believe this isn’t required for all because it’s just that darned good! The illustrations are gorgeous and the storytelling is phenomenal. I love this so much, and I hope everyone reads it!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Morgan

    IMO This was the best comic book of 2019. Compared to other comic books about feminism, this one is spot on. Finally found one that focus on the topic rather than the authors take on the subject, that really just about them or how they were inspired by these woman. Mikki Kendall does a great job focusing on all types of women. She also points out the flaws of feminism too. A lot of this is focused on non-white women and their role (hence the cover). Don't think women rights meant rights for all IMO This was the best comic book of 2019. Compared to other comic books about feminism, this one is spot on. Finally found one that focus on the topic rather than the authors take on the subject, that really just about them or how they were inspired by these woman. Mikki Kendall does a great job focusing on all types of women. She also points out the flaws of feminism too. A lot of this is focused on non-white women and their role (hence the cover). Don't think women rights meant rights for all women. This mentions how some suffragettes were racist and not friendly to the fact of a black woman voting. This also goes into a lot about Asian, Native American, LGBT and disability women's rights too. It could have included some more white women I thought were important, but there are so many women already and it would be even longer if she talked about everything. I highly recommend this to women interested in the history of feminism and also men, this proves knowing the history helps the fight. I should also add there is a interview on this book on YouTube that is worth watching as a companion. Adds more than the comic. Kendall is a media critique and will point out racism in TV shows, like Agent Carter.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Rod Brown

    A nice survey of the history of women's rights movements. Starting in 4500 BCE, it moves fast, hitting the high points and giving most of the 200+ women profiled a single panel or a page at most. Hopefully it works as a jumping off point, inspiring readers to dig into whichever aspect most fascinates them.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Carolyn

    SO MUCH information here, so many names and faces and ideas and movements and moments and... And too much. Liked it a lot, think I have some students who will get a lot out of it, but at a certain point, you start to feel like you are just reading a list. I wish they had gone for more depth and less breadth. Or that there were followup mini graphic novels for each woman mentioned! Now that would make a great set, ha. Yes, impossible. But still: it's worth that they're bringing up names and SO MUCH information here, so many names and faces and ideas and movements and moments and... And too much. Liked it a lot, think I have some students who will get a lot out of it, but at a certain point, you start to feel like you are just reading a list. I wish they had gone for more depth and less breadth. Or that there were followup mini graphic novels for each woman mentioned! Now that would make a great set, ha. Yes, impossible. But still: it's worth that they're bringing up names and introducing people who maybe you haven't heard before (maybe you only knew the major players) but once there's that many of them, you don't get much information on each person. So it's a bit of a tossup. Definitely worth reading, definitely a great addition to a classroom library.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    So many incredible women featured in this! I'm planning on combing through the index to read more about my favourites. I appreciated that the focus of this history wasn't simply on white women or suffragettes, and covers different periods of history. I wish parts could have fleshed out more since they were mentioned in passing and at times the amount of names/people was almost overwhelming. Also at times I didn't care for the classroom concept. Really nice art though.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie

    A good starting place, albeit with some biases, for learning about womens rights! with pictures! A good starting place, albeit with some biases, for learning about women’s rights! with pictures!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Ruby

    This book. Man. So much information, so much suffering and pride. So much history...it profiles sooo many hard-working women but the profiles are are short so I know it could have been ten times as long. We've come so far. And yet so far to go. (I did tear up at some parts.)

  10. 5 out of 5

    Krista

    I was looking forward to this so much that I pre-ordered it, and for the most part it lived up to my extremely (possibly unfairly) high expectations. This book covers a *lot* of ground and many many women and events, so it can't go into much depth about any of them and it can't touch on everything, due to space constraints. It will probably whet your appetite for more. That's a good thing, even if it's mildly frustrating! This is meant to be a primer and it is one. Some parts are USA-heavy which I was looking forward to this so much that I pre-ordered it, and for the most part it lived up to my extremely (possibly unfairly) high expectations. This book covers a *lot* of ground and many many women and events, so it can't go into much depth about any of them and it can't touch on everything, due to space constraints. It will probably whet your appetite for more. That's a good thing, even if it's mildly frustrating! This is meant to be a primer and it is one. Some parts are USA-heavy which was fine with me because that's where I live, and so do the authors. The graphic novel format really worked for me, and I think my kids will want to read it because of that. The pages feel nice and sturdy and the artwork is solid, with an especially gorgeous cover. This book doesn't shy away from tough topics and some violence is shown in the artwork, but not in a scary or glorifying way. I found some of the transitions and jumping around a bit jarring, but I also can't think of a better way to cover so much material succinctly. Overall the framing device works well: we virtually travel through time and around the world along with a class learning women's history from a futuristic, personified AI program. The students pose questions to the AI and talk a bit with each other, too, but most of the text is the AI character narrating historical events and giving brief biographies. I wish this book included pronunciation guides for all of the names, both for read-aloud purposes and just for my own edification. Maybe as footnotes in a future edition? I appreciate the index at the back and can envision this being used as a classroom and family resource, as well as being readable as a story. It's not easy to accomplish both of those things in one book, but this one balances them pretty well, and looks good doing it. I hope there is a sequel soon.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Inda

    I had the chance to read this yesterday, and first of all I must say I love primers. This one goes over the good and bad of women's rights history in all its complications but does so in an accessible format and even makes it fun. I love that it has a reach for a wide range of ages but does not sacrifice nuance in any way. Even if you know most of all of the women mentioned in the series, it's still a good way to put them into context for the various ways women have had to fight for equal rights I had the chance to read this yesterday, and first of all I must say I love primers. This one goes over the good and bad of women's rights history in all its complications but does so in an accessible format and even makes it fun. I love that it has a reach for a wide range of ages but does not sacrifice nuance in any way. Even if you know most of all of the women mentioned in the series, it's still a good way to put them into context for the various ways women have had to fight for equal rights throughout the centuries. Highly recommend.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Krista

    A great book to read point blank, but an even better one to coincide with international womens day/womens history month. Theres a lot of information on women/womyn/womxn who impacted history in different ways and different locations. Its reads as both an introductory lecture to a class covering what youll unpack as the semester continues and as an episode of the magic school bus. Because it covers much of history, the information per person covered is limited. I do wish they would have A great book to read point blank, but an even better one to coincide with international women’s day/women’s history month. There’s a lot of information on women/womyn/womxn who impacted history in different ways and different locations. It’s reads as both an introductory lecture to a class covering what you’ll unpack as the semester continues and as an episode of the magic school bus. Because it covers much of history, the information per person covered is limited. I do wish they would have integrated more LGBTQ women/womyn/womxn throughout history in addition to having the section on LGBTQ women/womyn/womxn who impacted history.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jamie (ReadsinTrees) Dacyczyn

    A pretty good look at the history of women's rights, with special attention paid to women of color, women with disabilities, queer women, and transwomen. I appreciate that problematic outdated views (like being pro-eugenics or racist) from some iconic figures weren't smoothed over, but openly acknowledged. My only quibbles are that occasionally the transition from one woman to the next didn't always flow smoothly, there were occasional references to things in the background that I wish were A pretty good look at the history of women's rights, with special attention paid to women of color, women with disabilities, queer women, and transwomen. I appreciate that problematic outdated views (like being pro-eugenics or racist) from some iconic figures weren't smoothed over, but openly acknowledged. My only quibbles are that occasionally the transition from one woman to the next didn't always flow smoothly, there were occasional references to things in the background that I wish were explained or noted, and I'm a smidgen disappointed that I didn't see any pink pussy hats (though I haven't examined every single page Where's Wanda style). Overall, definitely worth reading.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Gabby

    Loved the illustrations and that this book includes both the successes and the pitfalls throughout the history of the fight for womens rights. It definitely leans towards American history in the middle and end, but that is likely because it would have to be much larger to add more info in the world history sections throughout the book. This is one marketed more towards Americans. Id be interested to see a graphic novel like this for each country. We dont learn enough about struggles for equal Loved the illustrations and that this book includes both the successes and the pitfalls throughout the history of the fight for women’s rights. It definitely leans towards American history in the middle and end, but that is likely because it would have to be much larger to add more info in the world history sections throughout the book. This is one marketed more towards Americans. I’d be interested to see a graphic novel like this for each country. We don’t learn enough about struggles for equal rights in many other countries. However, I enjoyed this a lot!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Anne

    If youre looking for a graphic history (aka comic book style) book that explains the fight for womens rights, this is the book. The plot entails a class of young women, who disagree with what the womens movement is, receiving a tour through history from a purple artificial intelligence. They cover historical figures from multiple countries, as well as an outline of different systems of rights in different places and times. They cover suffrage, equal rights, and how womens rights movements If you’re looking for a graphic history (aka “comic book style”) book that explains the fight for women’s rights, this is the book. The plot entails a class of young women, who disagree with what the women’s movement is, receiving a tour through history from a purple artificial intelligence. They cover historical figures from multiple countries, as well as an outline of different systems of rights in different places and times. They cover suffrage, equal rights, and how women’s rights movements intersect with minority rights, the labor movement, white supremacy, child labor laws, eugenics, misogyny, the civil rights movement, LGTBQIA rights movements, and many other important points in history. I think Fredrick Douglass might be the only man mentioned by name. They also cover historical activist figures you may not hear about elsewhere — especially Black, Native American, and Indian folks. I learned more names in this book than I did in 12 years of education last century. Because it’s a survey more than a textbook, most of what you get is a name and maybe two paragraphs about a person or an event. It’s enough to pique interest and send the reader back to the library. (It’s also probably a good “pick one person from the book to do a report on” resource for teachers.)

  16. 5 out of 5

    Theresa

    The subtitle of this book is "a graphic history of women's fight for their rights," which is an apt description. But it's much more than that. The authors include information about women that most of us have never heard of. I taught Women's Studies for over thirty years and I still found new information. They begin with powerful women in ancient history and bring us through the ages to the present. More importantly this book is multicultural and global. The illustrations are terrific and though The subtitle of this book is "a graphic history of women's fight for their rights," which is an apt description. But it's much more than that. The authors include information about women that most of us have never heard of. I taught Women's Studies for over thirty years and I still found new information. They begin with powerful women in ancient history and bring us through the ages to the present. More importantly this book is multicultural and global. The illustrations are terrific and though you don't learn a great deal about each woman, you now have a reference from which to do more research if you're so inclined. Anyone interested in women's contributions to history should read this book.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Christianne

    Thumbs up for telling the stories (a lot of very brief stories) of a diverse group of women who made a difference for all women.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Vicki

    This was ambitious in the breadth of time it attempted to cover, but it did so with such tremendous artwork and intersectional content. I cannot wait to spread the word about this book as I could not put it down. It would be a great text to spark additional inquiry projects too given the incredible extent of issues covered.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Yuna

    The scope of this book is huge. So informative, so many women highlighted. Also really appreciated the emphasis on BIPOC, queer, and disabled women. It's a great primer, something to spark further interest because the downside to the book's breadth is that each woman only gets a block, maybe two, of text.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Doris Raines

    LOVE THIS TITLE AND BOOK WE ALWAYS GOT ONE MORE FIGHT👊👊👊👊👊👊👊👊👊👊👊👊👊 LOVE THIS TITLE AND BOOK WE ALWAYS GOT ONE MORE FIGHT👊🏽👊🏽👊🏽👊🏽👊🏽👊🏽👊🏽👊🏽👊🏽👊🏽👊🏽👊🏽👊🏽

  21. 5 out of 5

    Kelly K

    A great comic-style read for anyone. It's crazy how far we've come yet how much further we have to go.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Mia

    An excellent overview into womens activism and intersectionality. This should be in all school libraries. I did find myself wishing it dove deeper when reading about someones work, but thats the nature of it, right? Theres so much ground to cover - all of human history! Its a great starting point for me to read more about these amazing women and is a good push towards becoming an accomplice. An excellent overview into women’s activism and intersectionality. This should be in all school libraries. I did find myself wishing it dove deeper when reading about someone’s work, but that’s the nature of it, right? There’s so much ground to cover - all of human history! It’s a great starting point for me to read more about these amazing women and is a good push towards becoming an accomplice.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    Interview with the author: https://www.wbez.org/shows/reset/chic...

  24. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    INCREDIBLE

  25. 5 out of 5

    Herminia Chow

    About the book: Its a graphic novel, exploring the history of womens rights, starting from the past and concluding at the present. I received an advanced review copy from Penguin Random House in exchange for an honest review. First impressions: I enjoy reading about history, so I couldnt wait to delve into this book. I like the alliteration in the title, and it also gives readers an idea of what the book is about. Content: I love the illustrations. The colours are beautiful and they complement the About the book: It’s a graphic novel, exploring the history of women’s rights, starting from the past and concluding at the present. I received an advanced review copy from Penguin Random House in exchange for an honest review. First impressions: I enjoy reading about history, so I couldn’t wait to delve into this book. I like the alliteration in the title, and it also gives readers an idea of what the book is about. Content: I love the illustrations. The colours are beautiful and they complement the text. Both the author and artist are extremely talented. “How can we expect righteousness to prevail when there is hardly anyone willing to give himself up individually to a righteous cause?” Writing: I think there’s a great balance of words and pictures. Learning more about the issues women faced around the world put a lot of things into perspective for me. It’s such an eye-opening, educational read at less than 200 pages. Final thoughts: I highly recommend Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists: A Graphic History of Women’s Fight for Their Rights to just about everyone.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Berni Phillips

    This was pretty amazing. I had heard of maybe a third of the women featured in this book. It was informative and entertaining. The artwork is lovely, and both writer and artist are careful to be inclusive of just about every woman there is. I can't wait for my great-nieces to grow up a bit more so they will be ready for this.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Janet

    I find the graphic novel format difficult to read, personally, but its a good choice for this subject in that it keeps what could otherwise quickly become a long list of names and accomplishments interesting. The short bites of information are just enough to obtain a general grasp of the major events without being overwhelming. Many of the women mentioned are familiar to me, but many more were brand new. There may be more research in my future... I find the graphic novel format difficult to read, personally, but it’s a good choice for this subject in that it keeps what could otherwise quickly become a long list of names and accomplishments interesting. The short bites of information are just enough to obtain a general grasp of the major events without being overwhelming. Many of the women mentioned are familiar to me, but many more were brand new. There may be more research in my future...

  28. 4 out of 5

    Ben Truong

    Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists: A Graphic History of Women's Fight for Their Rights is a graphic novel written by Mikki Kendall and illustrated by Anna D'Amico, which traces the history of women's rights around the globe in graphic novel format. When their purple-skinned, white-haired AI instructor introduces the subject of women's rights, the class of six young women breaks out in argument. The instructor responds by transporting them across time and space to show them the history of Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists: A Graphic History of Women's Fight for Their Rights is a graphic novel written by Mikki Kendall and illustrated by Anna D'Amico, which traces the history of women's rights around the globe in graphic novel format. When their purple-skinned, white-haired AI instructor introduces the subject of women's rights, the class of six young women breaks out in argument. The instructor responds by transporting them across time and space to show them the history of women's rights. Starting with ancient Sumer and slowly proceeds to the present day. Along the way, the instructor exposes the reader to influential women from diverse backgrounds by highlighting the struggles and achievements of nearly 200 individuals who were leaders in a variety of areas of pursuit. The content is both historical and up to the minute, with relevance to current issues, covering, among other topics, colonization, suffrage, civil rights, redress movements, the wage gap, sexual harassment, reproductive rights, and LGBTQ rights. Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists: A Graphic History of Women's Fight for Their Rights is written and constructed rather well. The earliest chapters suffer from confusing panel layouts and stiff illustration, but this awkwardness gives way to lavish depictions of the fight for suffrage. Kendall and D'Amico manage the challenge of inclusivity with aplomb. Lesser-known black activists, disability rights advocates, and Native American leaders are portrayed with the same fulsome treatment as household names, all with an accessible tone and striking portraiture. All in all, Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists: A Graphic History of Women's Fight for Their Rights is a wonderful graphic novel about the history of women's rights.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Tasha

    Take a trip back through womens history to discover queens, warriors, suffragettes, and much more! This graphic novel is set in the future and has a computer instructor who takes a group of girls back in time to understand the basis of womens rights around the world. The book starts by looking deep into human history with the Assyrians, Mesopotamians, Eqyptians, Greeks and much more. The book then shows how the rise of the patriarchy eclipsed early womens rights and replaced it with much more Take a trip back through women’s history to discover queens, warriors, suffragettes, and much more! This graphic novel is set in the future and has a computer instructor who takes a group of girls back in time to understand the basis of women’s rights around the world. The book starts by looking deep into human history with the Assyrians, Mesopotamians, Eqyptians, Greeks and much more. The book then shows how the rise of the patriarchy eclipsed early women’s rights and replaced it with much more like what we see still today. The book moves forward in time, taking female rulers and warriors from around the world. There is also an exploration of civil rights as well as LGBTQ rights in the book that increases the representation of diverse experiences even farther. Kendall’s writing could have simply become a lengthy list of women from history, but she weaves a deeper narrative throughout. It also helps that she includes history as far back as she does. The supportive nature of those early societies is likely to surprise modern readers. Kendall works with intentionality to offer as diverse a cross-section of women as she can. They come from all over the world and represent many different countries, continents and races. Even more impressive is the way that Kendall is frank about the shortcomings of many of the women, acknowledging openly their open racism or unwillingness to challenge the status quo for others besides themselves. The art is great. The number of portraits in the book is daunting in its scope. Those women who are familiar visually are recognizable immediately. The additional information on each woman also offers vibrant images of their lives. The more tragic events are documented in more subtle tones, offering a visual cue that something dire has happened. A stellar graphic piece of nonfiction. Appropriate for ages 12-15.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Gina

    The frustrating thing about the book is that it goes so quickly, just skimming the surface of so many interesting stories. Given the thousands of years involved and the global focus, that would be inevitable. This is the first comic book I have seen with an index, and that is absolutely something that it should have. There are plenty of options for more research, and this can be a jumping off point for further personal reading. I could also see it working well as part of the curriculum for a The frustrating thing about the book is that it goes so quickly, just skimming the surface of so many interesting stories. Given the thousands of years involved and the global focus, that would be inevitable. This is the first comic book I have seen with an index, and that is absolutely something that it should have. There are plenty of options for more research, and this can be a jumping off point for further personal reading. I could also see it working well as part of the curriculum for a college course on women's studies or activism. Fans of Jason Porath's Rejected Princesses and Tough Mothers should also enjoy it. Taking such a long and broad view emphasizes how the fight for rights is not static. Many societies were more equal and accomplished various things that were undone. All the way to the US Voting Rights Act, passage just started challenges against it. Losing ground is always possible. In addition, it covers that there are other vectors, to that racism and disability rights and fighting against other forms of bias is constantly necessary, and that it can be done through many different means: protest, yes, but also art and music and sports. It ends on a hopeful note, because there are many ways to be involved and help, but it should also be sobering remembering how much there is to do.

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