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The Stories of the People Around You
November 16, 2022
Because I had figured out how to get my seat at the table ... It was my responsibility to help others find theirs.
-Alissa Mwenelupembe, Stories of Resistance

"Will this person think I’m an ‘angry Black woman’ if I complain about something that wasn’t right?" "Will my future employer take me seriously?" "How can I share what I do for a living with my children’s teachers, so they know I am serious about their education?" Walking through the world while Black is simultaneously proving you are competent and nonthreatening, that you could do someone’s job, but that you aren’t trying to take it.

"Somehow, I took these experiences and many more and I used them to make me strong. My experiences have been the stepping stones that have helped me cross to the other side of the river. Sometimes, other people have given me a stone along the way. I leave these stones for the women who come after me, and I return from time to time to make sure they are still visible."

So writes Alissa Mwenelupembe in the introduction to Stories of Resistance: Learning from Black Women in Early Care and Educationthe newest book from Exchange Press. Mwenelupembe continues, "This book is filled with stories of women who found their seats at the table. In addition to sharing their story, I also asked each author to choose one word that they feel best describes their journey. Each essay begins with that word."

Rooted: Theressa Lenear
Authentic: Jerletha Mcdonald
Defining: Cynthia Davis-Vanloo
Determined: Joyce Jackson
Limitless: Nadiyah Taylor
Reassurance: Brandy James
Passion: Rukia Rogers
Rebirth: Crystal Sanford-Brown
Intersectionality: Meghan L. Green
Resolute: Olga Lacayo
Planted: Kelly Ramsey
Resilience: Alissa Mwenelupembe

Stories of Resistance is available for pre-order.


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