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1. I Am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai

One tenet of women’s rights is education, which some women around the world still lack. One girl with a zeal for learning tells her story in I Am Malala. Malala was born in Pakistan, where the oppressive Taliban barred girls from attending school. With the support of her family, Malala rebelled against the Taliban. A disapproving terrorist shot her in the head when she was only fifteen. Following her recovery, Malala became an international representative of women’s rights.

2. Seneca Falls and the Origins of the Women’s Rights Movement by Sally G. McMillen

Seneca Falls and the Origins of the Women’s Rights Movement is crucial to understanding how the women’s rights campaign began. McMillen’s text spans events from 1840 to 1890. Throughout her book, McMillen recounts the lives of undisputed women’s rights champions like Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton.

3. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

Since its publication in 1985, Atwood’s dystopian novel remains shockingly relevant. The Handmaid’s Tale depicts a patriarchal society in which elite men divide women into classes. Due to plummeting birth rates, women with functioning reproductive systems must bear children. Although The Handmaid’s Tale is obviously fictional, it mirrors many conflicts of the modern world.

4. At the Dark End of the Street: Black Women, Rape, and Resistance — A New History of the Civil Rights Movement from Rosa Parks to the Rise of Black Power by Danielle L. McGuire

At the Dark End of the Street chronicles the struggles black women encountered in the 1950s. Although historians remember Rosa Parks for refusing to give up her bus seat, she sparked many important changes. Troubled by reports of sexual abuse, Parks pushed for civil rights and women’s rights to secure a better future for women of her race.

5. A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf

Virginia Woolf wrote A Room of One’s Own in 1929 to defy the rampant sexism of her day. Woolf describes the unequal treatment of women and men in British society, arguing that women would achieve more in an egalitarian system. Woolf makes excellent points regarding domestic duties and societal expectations that women today can relate to.