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Reclaiming Our Space: How Black Feminists Are Changing the World from the Tweets to the Streets

4.25  ·  Rating details ·  263 ratings  ·  56 reviews
A treatise of Black women's transformative influence in media and society, placing them front and center in a new chapter of mainstream resistance and political engagement

In Reclaiming Our Space, social worker, activist, and cultural commentator Feminista Jones explores how Black women are changing culture, society, and the landscape of feminism by building digital
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Paperback, 224 pages
Published January 29th 2019 by Beacon Press
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Nenia ⚡ Aspiring Evil Overlord ⚡ Campbell

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This is a difficult book to review because I really wanted to like it, but so many things about it rubbed me the wrong way that I wasn't able to appreciate it like I wanted to and ended up not really getting that much enjoyment or value out of it.



RECLAIMING OUR SPACE is a book written by Feminista Jones, a black activist on Twitter who has had a hand in a lot of popular social media activism movements. The subtitle "How Black Feminists
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Corvus
3.5 stars rounded up.

In reviewing Reclaiming Our Space by Feminista Jones, it feels necessary to recommend that the reader disregard the title of the book before diving in. I hung on to the title for a while before letting it go and wish I had let it go sooner. The book is not a book about other feminists' activism online and in person. It is largely a book about Jones' life, opinions, experiences, and writing career told through a collection of separate essays. This is not a bad thing. I would
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Brianna Carrasco
Feb 24, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019, girl-power, arcs, black
This collection speaks a lot about Black feminism in the age of social media, where Tumblr posts and Twitter hashtags are a new and valid method of resistance and political organization. This book also mainly focuses on the author's view of the new digital age of Black feminism. I didn't expect either of these things when diving into the book. The title "Reclaiming Our Space" made me feel as if I'd be reading a book about the diversity of Black feminism from a variety of different Black ...more
Amaka
Dec 31, 2018 added it
Out Jan 29th, Reclaiming Our Space explores the contributions Black Women have made (& continue to make) to society and the power of the hashtag. Many movements started by Black Women have been erased and overshadowed by others. In this book, Feminista Jones educates readers on the importance of origin stories. I appreciate the fact that the author was inclusive in her research and interviewed women from various fields. In addition to research, Feminista was transparent about her high and ...more
Alana Benjamin
Mar 29, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2019books
This book had so much potential but it is basically rudimentary Black Feminism mixed with the history of Black Twitter hashtags and moments from the perspective of the author.

The text made the point that origin stories matter but I don't think that it was strong enough.

I think that this book has its audience but it just wasn't me.
Galen Johnson
May 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is an excellently explanatory, powerfully written book that discusses the very recent forces and women that have made Black Feminism more visible and more powerful while also putting it in a historical context. I recommend this book for anyone who identifies as a feminist, and I particularly recommend it for anyone doing work on social issues on social media. I've followed Jones on Twitter for years, and still learned a lot. If you are a white person reading the book, you might feel a bit ...more
Kevin A. A.
Feb 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
There’s so much social media discourse surrounding Black feminism. It’s been really hard to track down the origins of some of the really poignant moments and stories that have made so much impact. Feminista Jones does an incredible job making all of these interlocking movement accessible and relatable. This book is a must for anyone who engages in any level of social media activism.
Amy Layton
Dec 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction, feminism
Before I read this book, I was convinced that online activism (slacktivism) was not useful. After all, what exactly does sharing memes do? What does ranting on twitter do besides blowing off some steam? Turns out, it does quite a lot! From the #MeToo movement to creating an online horror community, black feminist women bring to light a lesser-known (and lesser-viewed) type of activism.

Feminista Jones discusses how often black women are disregarded from this conversation, and how little such
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Jack Kitchen
Jan 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
As a white cishet man I know that my voice is the one most listened to whenever anything comes up. A book like this? Sure, sure you should listen to Black women, but let's just see what this man think first, I'm here to say to you to stop, stop what you're thinking and just read. Pick this up, in doing so support the, so often unseen or ignored, work of so many Black Women, and stop thinking on the same worn-out tracks, open your mind up and get rid of the prejudices you're harbouring. That this ...more
Karen Ashmore
Apr 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a great book! Author Feminista Jones (who I follow on Twitter) explores all aspects of black feminism, esp how Black Women are using social media to change the world. She delves into motherhood, reproductive justice, Black Women’s health care, sex positivity, #BlackGirlMagic, white supremacy, and dealing with racism of White Women and sexism of Black Men. She culminates in discussing the women who carry forth with the intersectionality of a Black Woman’s narrative as established by the ...more
Ariana
Dec 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Rounding up from a 3.5. Feminista Jones' book discusses Black feminists and their contributions to the digital space. Her words were accessible, centered on Black women, and gave me some readings to add to my TBR list. However, I agree with others that the book has a memoir quality because it's full of primarily personal discussions about Jones' work, thoughts, and connection to the feminists discussed. It doesn't make it any less informative or enjoyable to read, but it's not what I expected ...more
Zakiyyah
Jan 05, 2020 rated it liked it
As someone who hasnt read any explicit feminist literature, I felt this book provided a decent introduction to modern-day Black Feminism. Throughout the book, Jones gave great talking-points on why Black Feminism exists and the many issues Black Feminists address. It was great to hear the origins of some of the most popular hashtag movements of our time, especially as someone who doesn't use Twitter.

Jones could have provided a more comprehensive picture of the other feminists and movements. For
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Gabrielle
Dec 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars. I followed Feminista Jones and her tweets regularly while I was in grad school - but not much now since I am mostly social media free. I believe that Feminista Jones wanted to situate Black women activists (via social media) within a long history of Black feminism. I felt like this was more pronounced in the first chapters and then really centered on her own activism and that of her close friend and colleagues in the later chapters. I think a more accurate description of this book as ...more
Isaac Holloway
Dec 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Reclaiming Our Space is a text that relates the lived experience of Black Feminists in social media and how the work of Feminism manifests on those platforms. To quote the author Feminista Jones, "Origin stories matter..". I am very grateful to Jones' work to give credit where credit is due in this time when social media and the world continues to struggle with properly attributing anyone for anything especially Black folk.

Jones through the lens of her own experience and work in part
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Stephanie Doyle
Mar 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Feminista Jones is smart as hell and an excellent writer. Not an avid nonfiction reader but I loved how she stacked everything in this book. I learned a lot and it made me think. You can’t ask for much more.
Vanessa Ogbeide
Apr 19, 2019 rated it liked it
Learned a lot. The chapter on white feminism titled “I’ve always been good to you people!” was my favorite.
Sire
Apr 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Feminista Jones offers us a book that is educational, personal, and humorous without trying to be. She gives us the history of Black feminists, while showing us exactly social media has changed how movements of all types are born.

Her voice isn't one dimensional; the book manages to also be part memoir. We get an in-depth glimpse into exactly how Feminista Jones was shaped into the force that she is.

One of my favorite parts of the book, that I didn't expect, was the interviews with the Black
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Tea With Krystle In Bed
May 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
“Social Justice Warrior,” Feminista Jones, is an advocate for social change in the black community. She uses her social media platforms, to help lift the voices of fellow black innovators discussing topics that help bring light to the issues and promising changes of unity in the black community across the U.S. and around the world.

In her book, Reclaiming Our Space: How Black Feminists are Changing The World From The Tweets to the Streets, an explorative memoir, Jones shares how she and other
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Stefanie
May 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
I have been following FJ on twitter for a while now (maybe two or three years? definitely not an early adopter; I came on a little later into her work as a social activist), and I've always appreciated her candor and bluntness online. In the beginning I remember finding her opinions almost forceful; after continuing to follow her and reading other feminist writers, I've found that it doesn't feel that way anymore. We've been conditioned to think women self-promoting their work and ...more
Bookworm
Apr 15, 2019 rated it liked it
I'm not a follower of Jones on Twitter, but have known about her work and activism for years, so this sounded like an interesting read. I didn't read any reviews beforehand and didn't really know what to expect.

The book covers a lot of ground: digital activism, social media, how resistance has changed and adapted to a new world of Twitters and Facebooks plus conversations about women, race, class, and more. Despite the numerous (and there are many!) problems in social media including access,
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Kristy
Nov 29, 2019 rated it liked it
In this book, author, social worker, and activist Feminista Jones gives the reader a much-needed comprehensive look at Black feminism in the age of social media. Jones comes at this topic from her personal experience as a queer Black woman who has been extremely influential in the worlds of Twitter, blogging, and online communication. Much of the book reads as a memoir focused on her personal interactions and experiences, and Jones enriches the narrative by pulling together historical ...more
Nick
Jun 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Essential read from an essential writer/thinker. Ms. Jones details her own background in feminism as well as her trajectory toward becoming one of the most thought-provoking and influential people of our time. For anyone who dismisses organizing online via social media or "hashtag activism," Ms. Jones details the logical path of grassroots, face-to-face organizing (in which she has an extensive background as well) to bringing those tools to a wider, global audience.

In addition to her own
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Linda
Disclaimer: I received a free advance review copy from a LibraryThing giveaway.

I requested this because I know I have a lot to learn. I might not be part of the intended audience, but I hope I can still learn by actively listening to what black feminists have to say. It is not an easy book to read, honestly, because it makes you think about your behaviors and realize that some things you maybe thought were helpful or just innocuous aren't. There's a lot to learn here.

The one negative for me
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Haerlee
Jul 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I should have purchased this book. Instead, I borrowed a pristine version of this book, only to return it well-loved: dog eared and fingerprint smudged. I carried this book and slept with it because I didn't want to put it down. I also wanted to take note of some of the people, conferences, and movements that Jones referenced in the book.
All told, Jones delivered a book of recent histories. I started graduate school right when Melissa Harris-Perry ruled my weekends with her MSNBC show and the
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Shannon
Feb 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Anyone who follows Feminista Jones will not be surprised by any of this:
Reclaiming Our Space is a concise, clear sighted, loving summary of the tremendous power Black Feminists are leveraging and wielding today.
This book covers a wide variety of contemporary topics. It connects them historically to the larger Black liberation movement. It showcases her counterparts in this on and offline phenomena. It also calls to task the White Feminists who fail to see the impact of race and white supremacy
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Carmen Vivas
Mar 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I've read a few books on racism, but this is the first time reading a book that also touches on the way Black woman are viewed regarding sex and their sexuality. It's a topic that needs to be discussed more and I love the discussions she had with other Black woman on twitter. From sex to #blackgirlmagic toxic males this book keeps you engrossed. The fact that we are silenced and held back pushes us to grasp innovative ways to connect and be heard and how often we are asked to do the work for ...more
Derek Lynch
Mar 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book! Jones does a phenomenal job tracing the development of Black feminist thought throughout time and ties together today’s civil rights activists with those foremothers that are well known in today’s discourse. In particular her chapters on social media as a means of organizing and resisting, and her thoughts on Black feminist sexuality and on the “Mammy” trope used to subjugate and oppress Black women, this was an important read. I would recommend this to all my fellow white ...more
Kayla
Mar 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I've followed Feminista Jones on Twitter and learned sooooo much from her over the years. I wanted to support her writing by requesting her latest book at my local library, but I thought it might be too scholarly for me to ACTUALLY read.
I was wrong: the book is a delight. Jones is a consummate expert on many things, but her writing style is straightforward and funny. She really clarified for me the ways that (White) Feminism falls short. While I've thought about unique challenges Black women
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Kim
Didn't finish but I did read about half of it, and really enjoyed what I read. I'm a long-time fan of Feminista Jones on the internetz, and, as a white fan, this book was a get primer for me in two key respects:

* Great introduction to Black history where the focus is on recent history (gen X lifetime) and Black women; I spent a lot of time seeking out music videos and adding books to my to-read queue
* Great introduction to and argument for intersectional feminism: why we need it, and why it
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Diana
Jan 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
I’m glad I ignored the review below that gave it two stars. As she states in her review, it wasn’t written for her. I enjoyed the book, while I did feel it was a hard read the meatier chapters towards the end resonated with me the most as a black feminist woman and daily struggles.

I think it’s a great read for those in the same boat and just want to recognize that we are all struggling and the daily fight is tiresome. However, with that said the book highlighted the efforts so many black women
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