Five Women Poets on Writing the Body

With a sublime mastery of language and artistry, five women poets— Rachel Eliza Griffiths, Patricia Smith, Ellen Bass, Toi Derricotte, Tina Chang—ask us to consider bodies facing attacks both physical and psychological. They write in defense, in awe and awareness of the body, pointing again and again to our shared humanity.

Tools of the Patriarchy: The Weaponization of Hair

From abortion to weight loss, the patriarchal tradition of policing women’s bodies is a strong and long lasting one. Telling women what they must or must not do with their hair—whether that be the color, texture, quantity or location of it—is just another way women’s agency over their own bodies is controlled.

A Word Person Thinks About Bodies

Apparently, even in 2020, there is something suspect, even shameful, about devoting too much page time to the body, despite the fact that we all conduct our lives from within a body. But I’ve been body-observant for years—perhaps because my mother loved her own body.