100+ Black Women You Should Know (from 1825 to present)

Peaceful greetings.

I came across an article via site for Female and Male Feminists of Color The Crunk Feminist Collective’s facebook page – in honour of Black History Month, autostraddle.com have put together this list (with beautiful photographs) documenting over 100 women to know about. The website is for same-sex attracted women, so of course the article focuses on them for the fact that each of them is lesbian, bisexual, gay, queer and/or transgender. But honestly, I think that’s the least interesting thing about them.

Have a read. My favourites are the older women, those who have passed on. I also now have a whole new list of writers and filmmakers to check out! If she was still alive, the oldest woman on the list would be 189 years old, and the youngest woman on the list is 21 years of age. All these women have public profiles and work(ed) in activism, media, entertainment, and/or the arts.

People on the list (look at the article for bios and pretty photos):

  1. Frances E.W. Harper (1825-1911), Abolitionist / Poet / Author
  2. Edmonia “Wildfire” Lewis (1844-1907), Sculptor
  3. Alice Dunbar Nelson (1875-1935), Poet / Journalist / Activist
  4. Angelina Weld Grimké (1880-1958), Journalist / Teacher / Poet / Playwright
  5. Georgia Douglas Johnson (1880-1966), Poet / Playwright
  6. Ma Rainey (1886-1939), Blues Singer
  7. Gladys Bentley (1907-1960), Blues Singer
  8. Alberta Hunter (1895-1984), Blues Singer / Songwriter / Nurse
  9. Lucille Bogan (1897-1948), Blues Singer
  10. Josephine Baker (1906-1975), Dancer / Singer / Actress
  11. Bessie Smith (1894-1937), Blues Singer
  12. Carmen Mercedes McRae (1920-1994), Jazz Vocalist / Actress
  13. Ethel Waters (1896-1977), Vocalist / Actress
  14. Lorraine Hansberry (1930-1965), Playwright
  15. Ruby Dandridge (1900-1987), Actress
  16. Angela Davis, Activist / Author / Educator
  17. Moms Mabley (1894-1975), Comedian
  18. Ruth Ellis (1899-2000), Activist
  19. Alice Walker, Author / Activist
  20. Audre Lorde (1934-1992), Writer / Activist
  21. Mabel Hampton (1902-1989), Activist / Dancer / Philanthropist
  22. Marsha P Johnson (1944-1992), Activist / Artist
  23. Nell Carter (1946-2003), Singer / Actress
  24. Pat Parker (1944-1989), Poet / Activist
  25. Barbara Jordan (1936-1996), Politician
  26. Tracy Africa Norman, Model
  27. Danitra Vance (1954-1994), Actress/ Comedian and the first Black woman to join the cast of Saturday Night Live
  28. Margaret Sloan-Hunter (1947-2004), Writer / Activist
  29. Octavia E. Butler (1947-2006), Author
  30. Barbara Smith, Writer / Activist
  31. Jewelle Gomez and Cheryl Clarke, Writers / Activists
  32. Sapphire, Writer
  33. Dionne Brand, Poet / Novelist / Essayist / Documentarian
  34. Gaye Adegbalola, Blues Singer / Activist / Teacher
  35. MeShell Ndegeocello, Musician
  36. Octavia St.Laurent (1964-1999), Musician
  37. Tracy Chapman, Musician
  38. Donna Kate Rushin, Poet
  39. Staceyann Chin, Writer / Activist / Performing Artist
  40. Alexis Hornbuckle, WNBA Basketball Player
  41. Aneesa Ferreira, The Real World: Chicago and Real World/Road Rules Challenges (MTV)
  42. AZ Marie Livingston, Model
  43. Cheryl Dunye, Filmmaker
  44. Darlene Garner, Clergyperson / Activist
  45. Coral Smith, The Real World: Back to New York & RW/RR Challenges (MTV)  […okay, the addition of this one to the list is bizarre, as are many of the younger ones on this list]
  46. E. Denise Simmons, Politician & Activist
  47. Ebony Haith, Model
  48. Felicia “Snoop” Pearson, Actress / Author / Rapper
  49. Fiona Zedde, Writer
  50. Gloria Bigelow, Comedian
  51. Linda Villarosa, Journalist / Author
  52. Marvita Washington, Model
  53. Melange Lavonne, Hip-Hop Musician
  54. Nalo Hopkinson, Author
  55. Nirvana Savoury, Musician
  56. Nona Hendryx, Musician / Author / Activist
  57. Pamela Sneed, Poet / Actress / Activist / Performance Artist
  58. Robin Roberts, News Anchor
  59. Sasha Mallory, Dancer
  60. Staci Michelle Yandle, Attorney
  61. Jacqueline Woodson, Author
  62. Sassy, The Black Ink Crew
  63. Skyler Cooper, Actress
  64. Wanda Sykes, Comedian / Actress
  65. Zanele Muholi, Photographer
  66. Mel B, Musician
  67. Marla Glen, Singer
  68. Chagmion Antoine, Broadcast Journalist
  69. Kathy Harris, College Hill: Interns (BET)
  70. Phaidra Knight, Athlete
  71. Monica Roberts, Journalist / Activist
  72. Sajdah Golde, The Real L Word Season Two (SHOWTIME)
  73. Sharon Bridgforth, Playwright
  74. Azealia Banks, Rapper / Singer / Songwriter
  75. Mia McKenzie, Writer
  76. Angel Haze, Rapper [to the uninitiated, remember that scene in season two of HBO’s Girls where they cut to Charlie’s work party and do a pan shot of the room, and that woman is crying on the phone? Before Marnie humiliates herself with that Kanye rendition? Angel Haze’s ‘Werkin Girls’ is the infectious track playing]
  77. Angela Robinson, Filmmaker
  78. Ari Fitz, Model / Reality TV Personality
  79. Brandi Ahzionae, Activist
  80. Brittani Nichols, Comedian
  81. Brittney Griner, WNBA Basketball Player
  82. Celisse Henderson, Musician
  83. Dalia Ali Rajah, Actress / Writer / Producer / LGBT Activist / Life Coach
  84. De’Borah Garner, The Voice
  85. Mélissa Laveaux, Musician
  86. Dee Rees, Filmmaker [I wrote about her film ‘Pariah’ here]
  87. Diana King, Musician
  88. Frenchie Davis, Musician/American Idol Contestant
  89. Genesis Tramaine, Artist
  90. Jade Ellis, Musician/The X-Factor UK
  91. Janet Mock, Author/Activist
  92. Jasika Nicole, Actress / Illustrator
  93. K Michelle, R&B Musician
  94. Keisha Sean Waites, Politician
  95. Kim Crosby, Writer
  96. KOKUMO, Musician / Writer / Entrepreneur
  97. Laverne Cox, Actress / Activist
  98. Monifah Carter, R&B Divas (TV One)
  99. Po & Dice, La-La’s Full Court Life (VH1)
  100. Raven- Symoné, Actress & Singer
  101. Roxane Gay, Writer
  102. Ruthie Foster, Musician
  103. Ryann Holmes, Co-Founder of Bklyn Boihood
  104. Bernice, South Beach Tow (Tru TV)
  105. Samantha Irby, Writer
  106. Seimone Augustus, WNBA Basketball Player
  107. Miss Major Griffin-Gracy, Activist
  108. Syd tha Kyd, Singer / Producer  / DJ
  109. THEE Satisfaction, Musicians
  110. Toni Newman, Author
  111. Vicki Randle, Musician
  112. Layshia Clarendon, WNBA Basketball Player
  113. Jasmine Jordan, Michael Jordan’s daughter

Here’s THAT LINK again.

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