In celebration of Women’s History Month, we’re offering you the chance to win a copy of one of the featured books listed below. Check back throughout the month for excerpts, interviews, and guest post from the books’ authors and editors.
To enter our drawing, complete all required fields in the form at the bottom of this post by midnight on Tuesday, March 31.
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Artistic Devotion of Buddhist Women in Late Imperial China
“What distinguishes Becoming Guanyin from other excellent work on women and religion in late imperial China is its careful attention to the material culture of religious practice, from objects women made to objects of worship. The book should appeal to scholars and students in a variety of disciplines—history, art history, religion, literature, and gender studies.”
~Ann Waltner, coauthor of Family: A World History
Yuhang Li examines how lay Buddhist women in late imperial China forged a connection with the subject of their devotion, arguing that women used their own bodies to echo that of Guanyin. She combines empirical research with theoretical insights from both art history and Buddhist studies.
The Global Battle for Women’s Rights After the First World War
Mona L. Siegel
“A stunning retelling of the Great War’s aftermath and how women rose up at the war’s end to demand a different and better world. Siegel’s evocative prose transports us back in time and around the world as women from east, west, north, and south descend on Versailles in pursuit of their rights.”
~Dorothy Sue Cobble, coauthor of Feminism Unfinished: A Short, Surprising History of American Women’s Movements
This is the first book to demonstrate the centrality of women’s activism to the Paris Peace Conference and the critical diplomatic events of 1919. Mona L. Siegel tells the timely story of how female activists transformed women’s rights into a global rallying cry, laying a foundation for generations to come.
Edited by Ayşe Gül Altınay, María José Contreras, Marianne Hirsch, Jean Howard, Banu Karaca, and Alisa Solomon
“Opposed to revisionism, these authors probe more deeply into the past than positivist histories have ever done, following the flash of possibility into the future. A brilliant, timely, and singular volume.”
~Judith Butler, University of California, Berkeley
Women Mobilizing Memory, a transnational exploration of the intersection of feminism, history, and memory, shows how the recollection of violent histories can generate possibilities for progressive futures. It emerges from a multiyear feminist collaboration bringing together an interdisciplinary group of scholars, artists, and activists.
How Sex Shapes Governance and National Security Worldwide
Valerie M. Hudson, Donna Lee Bowen, and Perpetua Lynne Nielsen
“The First Political Order offers the strongest possible proof that male control of reproduction—and the violence necessary to control women’s bodies—is the first step in normalizing violence and hierarchy in every society.”
This work is a groundbreaking demonstration that the persistent and systematic subordination of women underlies all other institutions, with wide-ranging implications for global security and development. It offers a new paradigm for understanding insecurity, instability, autocracy, and violence.
Challenging the Face of Science
Edited by Lexi Jamieson Marsh and Ellen Currano
“The Bearded Lady Project is a necessary novelty. It’s snarky, beautiful, and increasingly powerful in the evolution of its message: Don’t ever assume you know what a scientist looks like.”
~Emily Graslie, chief curiosity correspondent at the Field Museum of Natural History
Challenging persistent gender biases in the sciences, the Bearded Lady Project puts the spotlight on underrepresented geoscientists in the field and in the lab. This book pairs portraits of these scientists after donning fake beards with personal essays in which they tell their stories.
The Story of Kawashima Yoshiko, the Cross-Dressing Spy Who Commanded Her Own Army
“An even-handed biographical study of a fascinating woman who may have been a secret agent during the Pacific War. Phyllis Birnbaum covers Kawashima Yoshiko’s background as a Manchu princess and her further adventures after being adopted in Japan in detail, using virtually every primary source available, as well as novels based on her life.”
~Janine Beichman, Daito Bunka University, Tokyo
Aisin Gioro Xianyu (1907–1948) was the fourteenth daughter of a Manchu prince and a legendary figure in China’s bloody struggle with Japan. This biography presents the richest and most accurate portrait to date of the controversial princess spy, recognizing her truly novel role in conflicts that transformed East Asia.
N. Harry Rothschild
“This is a fascinating study of the only female emperor in the whole of Chinese history. By delving deeply into the religious underpinnings of Wu Zetian’s power in a way that not even the most dedicated approach to her utilization of Buddhist scriptures and doctrines alone could manage, this investigation illuminates the unique quality of Wu Zetian’s reign far more effectively than previous studies.”
~Victor H. Mair, University of Pennsylvania
Wu Zhao (624–705), better known as Wu Zetian or Empress Wu, is the only woman to have ruled China as emperor. How did she ascend the dragon throne? This multifaceted history suggests that China’s rich pantheon of female divinities and eminent women played an integral part in the construction of Wu Zhao’s sovereignty.
Confronting Genocide in Cambodian Documentary
“This compelling book will matter as long as mass atrocities persist. Focused on the Cambodian genocide, Morag addresses a new phase in how we confront such events: films where survivors confront perpetrators face-to-face.”
~Bill Nichols, author of Speaking Truths with Film: Evidence, Ethics, Politics in Documentary
Perpetrator Cinema explores a new trend in the cinematic depiction of genocide that has emerged in Cambodian documentary in the late twentieth- and early twenty-first centuries. Raya Morag analyzes how Post–Khmer Rouge Cambodian documentarians propose a direct confrontation between the first-generation survivor and the perpetrator of genocide.
“Foucault’s Strange Eros challenges its readers to describe aptly, to touch delicately their seeking, mortal, embodied selves. The book elicits and sustains their interest. It rejoices on some pages to weep on others, but it is animated throughout by generous reading and creative responding.”
~Mark Jordan, author of Convulsing Bodies: Religion and Resistance in Foucault
In this deeply original consideration of Foucault’s erotic ethics, Lynne Huffer provocatively rewrites Foucault as a Sapphic poet. She uncovers eros as a mode of thought that erodes the interiority of the thinking subject. Focusing on the ethical implications of this mode of thought, Huffer shows how Foucault’s poetic archival method offers a way to counter the disciplining of speech.