2020 Rise: A Feminist Book Project committee introduces new name and top ten feminist books for young readers
For Immediate Release
Program Coordinator, Community Engagement
PHILADELPHIA -- The Rise: A Feminist Book Project for Ages 0-18 committee (formerly known as the Amelia Bloomer Project), a subgroup of the Feminist Task Force (FTF) of the American Library Association's Social Responsibilities Round Table (SRRT), selected its top ten books for 2020. Each year, the committee creates an annual booklist of the best feminist books for young readers, ages birth through 18, to be used by interested librarians, teachers, parents, and others who work with youth. The following titles were chosen as the 2020 Top Ten:
"Shout" by Laurie Halse Anderson
"What Do You Do With a Voice Like That? The Story of Extraordinary Congresswoman Barbara Jordan" by Chris Barton, illustrated by Ekua Holmes
"Rise! From Caged Bird to Poet of the People, Maya Angelou" by Bethany Hegedus, illustrated by Tonya Engel
"We Set the Dark on Fire" by Tehlor Kay Mejia
"The Proudest Blue: A Story of Hijab and Family" by Ibtihaj Muhammad with S.K. Ali, illustrated by Hatem Aly
"A Boy Like You" by Frank Murphy, illustrated by Kayla Harren
"Forward Me Back to You" by Mitali Perkins
"Thirteen Doorways Wolves Behind Them All" by Laura Ruby
"At the Mountain's Base" by Traci Sorell, illustrated by Weshoyot Alvitre
"Surviving the City, Vol. 1" by Tasha Spillett and Natasha Donovan
The complete bibliography will be available at https://ameliabloomer.wordpress.com/.
Since 2002, the Amelia Bloomer Project has been promoting quality feminist literature for young readers as a part of the Feminist Task Force of the Social Responsibilities Round Table. This year, the committee learned that, though Amelia Bloomer had a platform as a publisher, she refused to speak against the Fugitive Slave Law of 1850 (Simmons). SRRT and FTF believe librarians and libraries must work to correct social problems and inequities with particular attention to intersectionality, feminism, and deliberate anti-racism. As a result, the committee unanimously voted in favor of a name change. The project will be renamed "Rise: A Feminist Book Project for Ages 0-18," reflecting the diversity and inclusion for which feminism as a whole -- and this committee specifically -- strives.
The members of the 2019-2020 Rise: A Feminist Book Project for Ages 0-18 committee are: Kelsey Keyes (co-chair), Boise State University (ID); Melissa Nemitz (co-chair), West Windsor Public Library (NJ); Natasha Forrester Campbell, Multnomah County Library (OR); Silvia Lin Hanick, LaGuardia Community College (NY); Leila Roy, Lyman Community Library (ME); Ally Watkins, Mississippi Library Commission (MS). Sara Saxton, Wasilla Public Library (AK), Tiffeni Fontno, Boston College (MA), Ariana Hussain, Alternate: Jean-Louise Zancanella, College of Western Idaho (ID).
The ALA Social Responsibilities Round Table (SRRT) is a unit within the American Library Association. It works to make ALA more democratic and to establish progressive priorities not only for the Association, but also for the entire profession. Concern for human and economic rights was an important element in the founding of SRRT and remains an urgent concern today. SRRT believes that libraries and librarians must recognize and help solve social problems and inequities in order to carry out their mandate to work for the common good and bolster democracy.