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Celebrated Author and Feminist, bell hooks Dies Aged 69

By December 16, 2021News

bell hooks, born Gloria Jean Watkins in September 1952, was an American author, professor, feminist and social activist. Her pen name, bell hooks, was borrowed from her maternal great-grandmother Bell Blair Hooks, however, she chose to deliberately style her name with lower case letters in order to focus readers’ attention on her message rather than the author.

hooks was an avid reader, and was first educated in racially segregated public schools before later moving to an integrated school in the late 1960s. In 1973, she obtained her BA in English from Stanford University before her MA in English from the University of Wisconsin–Madison in 1976. During this time, aged 24, hooks was busy writing her celebrated book Ain’t I a Woman: Black Women and Feminism, which was published in 1981.

During her career, hooks released more than 40 books including; essays and poetry, and even children’s books. Her writing regularly explored feminism, racism, culture, capitalism, politics, and sexuality, and her work addressed how a person’s race, gender, sexuality, and social class were interconnected.

“No Black woman writer in this culture can write ‘too much’. Indeed, no woman writer can write ‘too much’ … No woman has ever written enough.” – Remembered Rapture: The Writer at Work (1999)

Sadly, on Wednesday 15th December 2021, aged 69, bell hooks died from kidney failure at her home in Berea, Kentucky. “The family honored her request to transition at home with family and friends by her side,” read a statement from the family.

The family is honored that Gloria received numerous awards, honors, and international fame for her works as [a] poet, author, feminist, professor, cultural critic, and social activist,” the statement said, “We are proud to just call her sister, friend, confidant, and influencer.”

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