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TRAILBLAZERS by Gabrielle David is a six-volume series that examines the lives and careers of over four hundred brilliant women from the eighteenth century to the present who blazed uncharted paths in every conceivable way. The lives profiled here include recognizable figures alongside some women that readers will be discovering for the first time, as well as those women who are shaping the era we live in today.
This second volume of the TRAILBLAZERS series features women who are visual artists, women who served their country as elected officials or working in government, and composers, songwriters, and conductors. Each of these sections is preceded by an introduction, which provides insight into these women’s stories in a historical timeline. This volume includes biographical essays of eighty-five women, illuminating the significant role each have played in shaping America’s greatness, accompanied by powerful photographs that help illustrate who they are.
In Volume 2 we learn about the first nationally known Black woman artist, sculptor Edmonia Lewis, the first Black woman cartoonist Jackie Ormes, photographer Carrie Weems, and a new generation of artists such as Kara Elizabeth Walker and Tschabalala Self. We realize that before notable politicians like Lori Lightfoot and Stacey Abrams, women like Crystal Bird Fauset, Velvalea “Vel” Phillips, and Shirley Chisholm paved the way. This book also shines a light on the handful of Black women who served on presidential cabinets, like Patricia Robert Harris, Condeleeza Rice, and Loretta Lynch. And as we venture into the world of music, we celebrate classical composers like Nora Holt and Florence Beatrice Price, choral conductor Eva Jessye, highly acclaimed singer-songwriters like Valerie Simpson and Missy Elliot, conductor Jeri Lynne Johnson, award-winning film and TV composer Kathryn Bostic, and breakout songwriter rapper Brittany “Starrah” Hazzard. Their personal achievements reveal the best qualities of Black women in America.
With TRAILBLAZERS, David has created an expansive and accessible reference book that provides significant information on the histories of the movements for feminism and civil rights. The book provides a hopeful and inclusive telling of history, one in which Black women receive the same recognition as their white and male counterparts. From the foremothers who broke gender and racial barriers to the mighty women of today, TRAILBLAZERS turns a much-deserved spotlight on these powerful and inspiring role models. This book is written in accessible prose that contain personal reflections for a broad audience, and it can also serve as a vital reference guide for use in schools and libraries.
About the Author
Gabrielle David is a multidisciplinary artist who is a musician, photographer, digital designer, poet, and writer. David is the publisher of 2Leaf Press and serves as chair of the board of 2Leaf Press Inc. Over the years, she has participated in and organized poetry reading panel discussions, festivals and workshops, and has published articles and essays in numerous publications. David is coeditor of What Does It Mean to be White in America, Breaking the White Code of Silence, A Collection of Personal Narratives (2016), editor of Branches of the Tree of Life (2014), and coeditor of Hey Yo! Yo Soy!40 Years of Nuyorican Street Poetry (2012). She is the author of the poetry chapbooks, Spring Has Returned and I Am Renewed (1996), and This is Me: A Collection of Poems and Things (1994).
Carolina Fung Feng, a translator and copy editor specializing in Spanish translations, has worked on a number of 2Leaf Press titles, and is the co-translator of Hey Yo! Yo Soy! 40 Years of Nuyorican Street Poetry (2012). She has worked in adult education programs as an ESOL teacher, coordinator and administrator, and currently works as a census communications and digital campaigner for a nonprofit organization in New York. Fung Feng holds a BA in Spanish-English translation and interpretation, and English Language Arts from Hunter College (CUNY).
Chandra D. L. Waring is an assistant professor at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. Her research focuses on the growing bi/multiracial population. Her interest in race stems from being raised in a multiracial family in a three very different contexts: Germany, Georgia, and Connecticut. Her work has been published in numerous publications and she earned her Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Connecticut in 2013, where she was a Multicultural Fellow.
Lyah Beth Leflore is a television and film executive, producer, music supervisor, and the author of eight critically acclaimed books, two of which are National Bestsellers. LeFlore recently established the Shirley Bradley LeFlore Foundation, a literary arts based organization with a specific outreach to women and artists of color, named in honor of her mother, who was St. Louis Poet Laureate and a top influencer in poetry and performance.