Non-fiction reads to Break the Book Bias 

by | Mar 7, 2022

Time to take inventory of your bookshelf! To celebrate International Women’s Day (IWD), Books That Matter is inviting you to #BreakTheBookBias with us by supporting women and People of Colour (POC) writers. Due to gender biases in the publishing industry, women writers still persistently struggle with inequalities and stereotyping, and POC writers are still extremely underrepresented. 

To get you started, we’ve compiled a list of 10 non-fiction works written by women and POC for you to read this March 8th! Not only will reading stories on different experiences enrich your understanding of the lives of others, but by financially supporting these writers you’re helping prove the growing desire for more work of this kind to be published. Opening doors for more POC and women non-fiction writers in the future will help us finally Break the Bias in the publishing industry. 

  1. Forgotten Women: The Writers by Zing Tsjeng 

Forgotten Women is a new series of books that uncover the lost herstories of influential women – women who have defied the patriarchy and have helped form, shape and change the course of our futures. In The Writers edition, Tsjeng celebrates 48 unsung, genius female writers from throughout history and across the world. 

  1. Common People: An Anthology of Working Class Writers by Kit de Waal

Working-class stories are not always tales of the underprivileged and dispossessed. Here, Kit de Waal brings together thirty-three established and emerging writers who invite you to experience the world through their eyes. To hear their voices, loud and clear, as they unapologetically reclaim and redefine what it means to be working class.

  1. The Transgender Issue: An Argument for Justice by Shon Faye

In this powerful new book, Shone Faye reclaims the idea of the ‘transgender issue’ to uncover the reality of what it means to be trans in a transphobic society. In doing so, she provides a compelling, wide-ranging analysis of trans lives from youth to old age, exploring work, family, housing, healthcare, the prison system, and trans participation in the LGBTQ+ and feminist communities, in contemporary Britain and beyond. 

  1. It’s Not About the Burqa by Mariam Khan 

What does it mean, exactly, to be a Muslim woman in the West today? According to the media, it’s all about the burqa. Here’s what it’s really about… Bringing together the voices of Muslim women from different backgrounds, this anthology of eye-opening essays reflects on what it’s really like to be a female Muslim in the West today. 

  1. Sexual Revolution by Laurie Penny 

A wide-ranging, passionate and fearless polemic against the hard right’s attempts to neuter a productive revolution in gender, sex and consent. Penny’s incendiary volume examines the ways in which feminism can fight back to ensure that vital gains are not lost.

  1. Men Who Hate Women by Laura Bates 

In this urgent and groundbreaking book, Laura Bates goes undercover to expose vast misogynistic networks and communities rarely spoken about. Through interviews with former members and the people fighting against them, Bates gives unique insights into how this movement operates and how ideas are spread. Uncensored, and sometimes shocking and terrifying – this is the uncomfortable truth about the world we live in… and what we must do to change it. 

  1. You Don’t Know Us Negroes by Zora Neale Hurston

You Don’t Know Us Negroes is the quintessential gathering of provocative essays from one of the world’s most celebrated writers, Zora Neale Hurston. Spanning more than three decades and penned during the birth of the Harlem Renaissance, the Montgomery Bus Boycott, desegregation of the military, and school integration, Hurston’s writing articulates the beauty and authenticity of Black life.

  1. Why Women Are Poorer Than Men and What We Can Do About It by Annabelle Williams

In this astonishing dissection of the gender wealth gap, financial journalist Annabelle Williams explains why so few women rank among the super-rich and why women are the majority of those in poverty. From the personal – feeling financially confident and liberated – to the political – demanding systemic support and representation – this ground-breaking expose will empower your financial decisions and arm you with the knowledge needed to demand equality.

  1. Book by Brown Girl Like Me: The Essential Guidebook and Manifesto for South Asian Girls and Women by Jaspreet Kau

From the media to mental health and from the workplace to the body, Jaspreet Kaur unpacks every area of intersectional identity for South Asian women and girls in this urgent and timely guide to empowerment. A part toolkit, part call-to-arms, Brown Girl Like Me is essential reading for South Asian women and people with an interest in intersectional feminism and cultural issues. This book will educate, inspire and spark urgent conversations for change.

  1. Chess Queens: The True Story of a Chess Champion and the Greatest Female Players of All Time by Jennifer Shahade 

Spotlighting the hitherto neglected female chess pioneers alongside recounting Shahade’s own experiences of misogyny and sexism in the male-dominated game, Chess Queens tells a story at once shocking, inspiring and exhilarating. 

Books That Matter is a brand putting women’s writing in the spotlight through unique reading experiences. Our bestselling book subscription boxes each capture an immersive theme specifically to enlighten, educate and empower, all in a way that feels like a gift every single month. For just £17 a month, each box contains a book by female authorship, and at least 3 themed gifts by independent female creatives. Come and join us, along with thousands of other bookworms, on a unique reading experience!

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