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Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower

4.42  ·  Rating details ·  2,724 ratings  ·  506 reviews
An Emma Watson "Our Shared Shelf" Selection for November/December 2018 • NAMED A BEST BOOK OF 2018 BY: The New York Public Library Bustle The Root • NPR Fast Company ("10 Best Books for Battling Your Sexist Workplace")

Rebecca Solnit, The New Republic: "Funny, wrenching, pithy, and pointed."

Roxane Gay: "I encourage you to check out Eloquent Rage out now."

Joy Reid, C
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published February 20th 2018 by St. Martin's Press (first published February 19th 2018)
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4.42  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,724 ratings  ·  506 reviews

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Mar 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
An excellent essay collection that explicitly centers black women and black women's feminism. Lots of provocative, intelligent thinking and engagement with blackness, popular culture, black womanhood, respectability politics, and the uses of, as the title suggests, eloquent rage. I really enjoyed how black womanhood remained the focal point of these essays from beginning to end. At times, some of the essays felt a bit long and circuitous but Cooper is such an interesting writer and thinker that ...more
May 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars

A powerful and moving essay collection that will appeal to fans of Roxane Gay and Audre Lorde. Brittney Cooper writes about an array of cultural, personal, and political topics from the perspective of a black feminist. She addresses respectability politics and rage, friendship between black women, the 2016 collection, neoliberalism and the myth of exceptionalism, and more. One of her most impressive feats in this collection: she wields a writing voice that is intelligent and incisive an
Oct 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
2/20--this is now out! GO GET IT NOW!!

I received an advanced copy of this through NetGalley. Views are my own.

This is essential reading.

This was a powerful, heartbreaking, hilarious, important read. I can't recommend it enough.

I loved that while Cooper discusses topics both weighty and highly academic, her writing retains a sense of accessibility. I don't mean that it's dumbed down at all--her arguments are full of research and nuance--but rather that she clearly crafted this book with the audie
Nenia ✨ Queen of Literary Trash, Protector of Out-of-Print Gems, Khaleesi of Bodice Rippers, Mother of Smut, the Unrepentant, Breaker of Convention ✨ Campbell

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This is one of those books where it feels wrong to say that I "enjoyed" the book because it is a book about inequality and oppression, and anger and pain, and I didn't exactly have a grand old time reading it. On the other hand, I found it fascinating and interesting and important, and even though it isn't necessarily something someone would read for fun, it should be read and I'm very glad I received a copy of it to read and review for my
Feb 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
My new Bible. Finally a book that puts definition or structure to the internal rage I’ve been feeling as a black women. Thank you Brittney for writing this.
I am not sure that I’ve related this much to a collection of essays in a very long time. Brittney Cooper’s Eloquent Rage is a indictment of neoliberal society and its myths of exceptionalism, but also a “homegirl hem-up” for those of us struggling to correct both systemic oppression and our personal flaws.

I’ve been a fan of Brittney Cooper’s since my senior year of high school, when I first encountered her website, The Crunk Feminist Collective. As a sixteen year-old in South Carolina, the work
Never Without a Book™
May 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Dr. Brittney Cooper’s Eloquent Rage is brutally honest and is written with humor and grace. Cooper presents multiple ways race, gender, and class touch in the oppression of Black Women, and how we subsequently navigate in the world. She provides solid research on why we all should own our rage and she does not sugarcoat words or try to make her evidence comfortable for black men and white people who believe themselves to be good. People of all races and genders, should read this book.
Renée | Book Girl Magic
This books was EVERYTHING!! Do you hear me? Brittney Cooper was raw, comedic, on point and so relatable. She's just brilliant. There's no other way for me to describe it.
I think everything that I've ever thought or wanted to say as it pertains to African Americans and especially women was addressed in her book. In the past, people often liked to place me in a box growing up because I spoke different, played a white sport, listened to different types of music and rocked long hair. It was an extre
Apr 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tops
OH MY!!! Dr. Cooper EMPTIED THE CLIP IN THIS BRILLIANT PIECE OF LITERATURE!!! This is what we young women need today! There is rage but as the title professes it is eloquent. From beginning to end, top to bottom she leaves no stone unturned and goes about it both methodically and warmly. If I could give it 10 Stars I would— it is the best book of 2018 and it’s just April. I hope to meet this beautiful and brilliant scholar someday, I’d even love to take her class. This is the type of woman I wis ...more
May 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Y'all need to run and get yourself a copy of this book because Dr. Brittney motherfucking Cooper did that! Damn this book is fantastic!
Apr 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Dr. Brittney Cooper is my shero.

That is all.

Jamise // Spines & Vines
This book is everything, absolutely exhilarating! Brittney Cooper’s passion for black women and girls radiates throughout this book. It’s hard not to have your blood pressure go up a notch and your heart race a little faster while reading this book. I screamed out loud, laughed, said amen & preach Brittney! She spares the feelings of no one and I fully appreciate her take it or leave it unapologetic gut punching truth telling. THANK YOU #BrittneyCooper for going to the mountaintop to scream ...more
Mar 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Confession: Just when I thought that I could not love Brittney Cooper more, she published Eloquent Rage. It took me longer than normal to read this book because it was so raw, so personal, and so full of rage. Dr. Cooper's writing is so smooth - she goes in and out of the towers of academia and ends up on her grandmother's porch all within the same sentence. She is clearly an intellectual, but also a homegirl in the best possible way. Cooper uses her own experience as a highly educated Black wom ...more
Britta Böhler
I've learned so much!
What an amazing piece of work. I am floored at how relatable and timely this book is. What I absolutely loved about this book is that black women remained the focal point of the book the entire time. Most of the issues Dr. Cooper discusses you see in the media and it is great and enraging at the same time to have these issues eloquently addressed.
This is the first thing Ive read by Dr. Cooper and I am beyond impressed at how she is able to authentically address these issues and remaining true t
“Black feminism is not a reactionary project. It is not about the damage that white girls do. Not solely or primarily. Black feminism is about the world Black women and girls can build, if all the haters would raise up and let us get to work.”

“White privilege works by making the advantages white people have invisible while making the supposedly “poor” choices of people of color hypervisible.”

Just wanted to start with two quotes that show the power and brilliance of Brittany Cooper’s writing, bec
Sam toer
Feb 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
A very powerful, astute, raw and brutally honest memoir which professor Brittney Cooper describes in her introduction as a "book for women who expect to be taken seriously and for men who take grown women seriously.This is a book for women who know shit is fucked up. These women want to change things but don't know where to begin."
Read for Emma Waton's Bookclub/Our Shared Shelf.

Loved this book so much. Brittney Cooper has a really comfortable diction and that made most of this book easy enough to read through. The only unavoidable problem I had with this was how long it took me to read it. I suffered a few bouts of empathy overload, but I expected that coming into this.

Eloquent Rage offers readers a detailed journey into the life of Brittney Cooper and her gender and race politics. She doesn't hold back against the patria
Alana Benjamin
Dec 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
“Not solely or primarily. Black feminism is about the world Black women and girls can build, if all the haters would raise up and let us get to work. When I talk about owning eloquent rage as your superpower, it comes with the clear caveat that not everyone is worth your time and your rage. Black feminism taught me that. My job as a Black feminist is to love Black women and girls. Period.”

This book is required & immediate reading for everyone. This book gave me so much the language &
Joshunda Sanders
Oct 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What America needs, we know, is not always what America is willing to listen to. But Black women are America, too, even if some are deeply invested in having us forget that. And not just Black women who are mired in struggle, petty jealousies or self-hatred because they can't see themselves, but Black women who love ourselves when we are laughing and when we are broken hearted, who want to know joy and liberation even when we want to twerk and be ratchet, cry outrageous tears, try to be Spiritua ...more
Phew. A phenomenal collection of essays that focuses on womanhood in the spheres of race, pop culture, respectability politics, the patriarchy, and more. What I super appreciated about this discussion of feminism is its consistent inclusion of trans women, and explicitly stating generalities as they pertain to allocishet folx. This is a must read for those of us that engage in critical feminist thinking, it explores feminism in some unique ways.
Sep 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An all-time fav in the genre- it is the intersectional memoir essay collection I've been waiting for and I absolutely loved it. I loved how she presented her arguments, I loved her use of personal details to paint a larger picture, and I loved her use of pop culture. This is my jam for this type of book
Nov 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book opened my eyes, challenged my thinking, made me uncomfortable (in the most necessary of ways). READ IT. Especially if you're a white woman.
Traci at The Stacks
Smart AF. Eloquent is an understatement. Cooper is a force for good and my god she is exciting too. Intersectional and powerful. Centering black womaness and feminism. Check this book out.
Taryn (Taryn and Her Books)
This was an excellent collection of essays that centred black women & black women’s feminism. Provocative & thought-provoking, this is a must read for anyone who considers themselves a feminist.
Nov 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is required reading. As a white intellectual southerner who used education as the throughway to escape both poverty and a family whose women held it together and whose men were alcoholics, cheaters, and/or totally absent I felt a LOT of familiarity and kinship in this book. That said, I am not a black woman and while patriarchy impacts us all the addition of racism and specifically anti-blackness adds a layer of complexity to these familiar to me circumstances that I can only view from the ...more
I'm surprised that I haven't heard much about Brittney Cooper's "Eloquent Rage" save for the recommended reference at my local library, but it was a read that I definitely found worthwhile in its overarching narrative. I was fortunate to pick up the audiobook which was wonderfully narrated by the author.

This is a combination of a biography, social commentary, and historical account of many issues that arise in the experience of black women, spanning from issues and figures noted through history
Mar 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book left me both praising and being slightly offended by its narrative. Withhold your judgement, however: this “offensiveness” is precisely why the book was so good. I was forced to remove my mask and step into the teachings and ponderings of the author, a Black woman. I confronted my feelings of being offended with internal questioning rather than shutting down. Why did that particular line, narrative, statistic, reference offend me? What do I have to lose by shedding this outer layer and ...more
Luna Peace
May 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Brittney is my girl and in this book she holds no punches. This is a necessary read for all women who see themselves as feminist. In her words "That is something that feminism needs to be clear on - that it isn't feminism if all women's concerns, particularly the most marginalized women's concerns, aren't taken seriously."

Dr. Cooper explains why black women are angry and exactly why we have every reason to be. She does it unapologeticly and factually. Numbers matter and she breaks it down, hipp
I borrowed this book from the library and I realized that I need my own copy. There is so much truth is this book that I relate to. This needs a permanent place on my shelf.
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Our Shared Shelf: Nov/Dec 2018: Eloquent Rage: A Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower 6 254 Apr 11, 2019 09:13AM  
Go On Girl! Book...: About the Book 3 7 Feb 04, 2019 02:01PM  
Go On Girl! Book...: About Brittney Cooper 2 4 Feb 04, 2019 01:44PM  
Dr. Brittney Cooper on Cardi B and Offset 1 6 Dec 18, 2018 01:23PM  
Must Buy!! 1 1 Nov 28, 2018 06:33PM  
  • The Crunk Feminist Collection
  • This Will Be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist in (White) America
  • Good and Mad: The Revolutionary Power of Women's Anger
  • Black Power: The Color Curtain / Black Power / White Man, Listen!
  • What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Blacker: A Memoir in Essays
  • How We Get Free: Black Feminism and the Combahee River Collective
  • Nasty Women: Feminism, Resistance, and Revolution in Trump's America
  • Unapologetic: A Black, Queer, and Feminist Mandate for Radical Movements
  • Things That Make White People Uncomfortable
  • Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women's Anger
  • Well-Read Black Girl: Finding Our Stories, Discovering Ourselves
  • You Have the Right to Remain Fat
  • Thick: And Other Essays
  • The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks about Race
  • In the Wake: On Blackness and Being
  • Invisible: How Young Women with Serious Health Issues Navigate Work, Relationships, and the Pressure to Seem Just Fine
  • Denmark Vesey's Garden: Slavery and Memory in the Cradle of the Confederacy
  • No Ashes in the Fire: Coming of Age Black and Free in America
Brittney Cooper is a writer, teacher, and public speaker. She thinks Black feminism can change the world for the better.

Brittney is Associate Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies and Africana Studies at Rutgers University. She is co-founder of the popular Crunk Feminist Collective blog. And she is a contributing writer for and a former contributor to Her cultural com
“Real radicalism implores us to tell the whole ugly truth, even when it is inconvenient. To own the hurt and the pain. To own our shit, too. To think about it systemically and collectively, but never to diminish the import of the trauma.” 14 likes
“Sexism, like every other “ism,” is a willful refusal to not see what is right in front of you.” 5 likes
More quotes…