Literature about oppression and social injustice usually sounds more interesting than it reads—and it doesn’t help that self-righteous activists make themselves redundant through repetition. Thankfully, in The Meaning of Freedom and Other Difficult Dialogues, famed activist Angela Y. Davis proves that it’s still possible to find a new, refreshing way to discuss race, gender, class, and sexuality. In this heartfelt and on-point examination through previously unpublished speeches, Davis discusses these issues with simple language and challenges us to think about how feminism and racism relate to our everyday lives. In the opening selection, “Report from Harlem,” she considers the ways in which capitalist America damages the youth of our time. Later, in writing on justice for LGBT communities, she discusses the way our sexual preferences define our lives and attempts to help those suffering from stigma. I finished the last page feeling empowered, better educated about the modern world, and ready to smash the patriarchy.
The Meaning of Freedom: And Other Difficult Dialogues, $10.85, amazon.com
By Jessica Wolford
This review appears in the Oct/Nov 2012 issue of BUST Magazine with cover girl Aubrey Plaza. Subscribe now.
The opinions expressed on the BUST blog are those of the authors themselves and do not necessarily reflect the position of BUST Magazine or its staff.