These are the books I’ve read and enjoyed in the second three months of 2018. Some of these books were for my American History course, but they were enjoyable enough to share with you all!
I’ve been in Germany for about a month now. This makes me want to focus on German and not want to read books in English, but it takes me so long to read books in German still. It is getting better though!
These are the books I really enjoyed so far:
Coming of Age in Mississippi by Anne Moody
Anne Moody, born Essie Mae Moody, an African-American woman grew up in rural Mississippi in the mid-20th century. Her memoirs cover her life for the first 25 or so years, including her childhood as well as being a student at Tougaloo College. Throughout her time there, she was very active in the Civil Rights Movement.
This is the first time I have read about someone dealing with so much racism from her fellow women and so much sexism from her fellow African-Americans.
I think I had never really thought about how alienating it is to be from more than one marginalized group. I really felt for her. I actually think about Anne Moody a lot these days. I recommend all feminists to read this book.
Malcolm X: Biography by Malcolm X as told by Alex Haley
The Autobiography is a narrative based on interviews of Malcolm X, born Malcolm Little. It outlines Malcolm X’s philosophy of black pride, black nationalism, and pan-Africanism. Haley coauthored the autobiography based on a series of in-depth interviews he conducted between 1963 and Malcolm X’s 1965 assassination, but Haley does an incredible job of making it seem as if Malcolm X directly wrote the entire autobiography. It does make me question the accuracy of the content and if I possibly have a skewed view of Malcolm X due to Haley’s possible bias, but I can never know really. Of course, we all have a skewed view of even our own past. Autobiographies and biographies are inherently works of fiction in one way or another, I think.
This book covers the rollercoaster of Malcolm’s life. From his mother’s pregnancy and the death of his father under questionable circumstances all the way through his time as a human rights activist and his eventual assassination. This includes organized crime, prison time, and of course, the Nation of Islam.
I think anyone new to the discussion on human rights should read this book. Of course, as with all books, it is important to think about not only what the words say, but also why they might say what they do.
7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
I could say so much about this book, but I already have. You can read what I have to say about and what I have learned from this book here!
All in all, I recommend everyone read these or at least skim this book. Personally, I listened to the audio book, which might actually be the best of all of the options. But either way, I think Covey gives us a good look into how to get to adjust everyday situations to be generally more pleasant! Essentially you only have to:
- Be proactive
- Begin with the end in mind
- Put first things first
- Think win-win
- Seek first to understand, then to be understood
- Sharpen the saw
From the Bottom Up by Chad Pregracke and Jeff Darrow
In my opinion, Chad Pregracke is a true American (world) hero! He is who inspired me to begin plogging, which now might actually be my #1 hobby! I had the honor of meeting him in person and got a signed copy of his book and read it within about 24 hours and have already pushed the book into multiple people’s hands because I found it amazing!
If you think littering is no big deal OR that no one is really doing it anymore, I really recommend reading this book AND going out and picking up trash one Saturday. I believe I take my environmentally-conscious friends for granted and don’t realize the mess that is happening all around the world everyday!
I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai
When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan, Malala Yousafzai spoke out. Malala refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education, leading her to be shot in the head while riding the bus home from school. Just a short time later, she became the youngest nominee ever for the Nobel Peace Prize.
This book will make you believe in the power of one person’s voice to inspire change in the world. Also, being able to simply read a book such as this one thanks to an education I did not have to fight for starting to feel like a privilege I never had thought of as a privilege before. As a woman, being able to read and learn is a lot less common than I ever realized. I highly recommend reading this book if you also have never thought of education in this way!
I know I say this every time, but hopefully I will read more books in the next few months so I can update y’all!
Have y’all read any good books recently? Let me know!