Intersectionality acknowledges that no one is any one thing, and various facets of identity can combine to change how someone sees and interacts with the world. And they’re worth reading for reasons beyond being able to slap a label—BIPOC, gay, disabled, all of the above—on the author or characters, and worth more than serving as a tool for readers to congratulate themselves for reading “diversely.” Read these books because they are great stories that expand your understanding of the human experience.
Bear explains that some people like to think of Indigenous communities as something from the past or, as author Thomas King called it, “the dead Indian,” a stereotype of the Indigenous person living in a teepee with a headdress on, dancing around a flame. However, Bear believes that once viewers see Indigenous people as a modern culture—as the opposite of the dead Indian—they get upset. Bear feels hopeful about their impact within the community, and that their content sheds light on underrepresented authors, books and content creators.
I remind my students time and again that both writing and editing are skills. There are rules and guidelines that can be learned and practiced. A copy of the original rulebook, Strunk’s century-old classic The Elements of Style, sits on my desk, a gift from my college roommate, the editor-in-chief of our magazine. The inscription is to “Michelle: A.K.A. Ms. ‘I am not a writer.’”It took two journalism degrees, press credentials and a journalism award for me to finally concede that I am, indeed, a writer. But it’s taken an army of thoughtful and thorough editors to make me a good one.