Leading Black Feminist Thinker bell hooks Has Died, Committee Directs Andrew Cuomo to Surrender Book Earnings, and More

by Staff

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—publishing reports, literary dispatches, academic announcements, and more—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories.

Writer and scholar bell hooks has died at age sixty-nine. The author of Ain’t I Woman: Black Women and Feminism, among many other books, hooks enriched the feminist movement by centering the experiences of Black and working-class women in her work. Widely read and celebrated, hooks helped inspire “an entire generation of Black feminists who saw that for the first time they had license to call themselves Black feminists,” according to Kimberlé Crenshaw. (New York Times)

When the news broke about her death, tributes to hooks began to pour in on Twitter, some of which the Cut has collected in an article. Clint Smith wrote, “Her work was imbued with a deep commitment to truth-telling, but also with a profound sense of care and love for community. She was a treasure.” In the words of Roxane Gay, “Her loss is incalculable.”

Having found that former governor Andrew Cuomo engaged in unethical conduct related to the publication of his 2020 book, American Crisis: Leadership Lessons From the COVID-19 Pandemic, the New York State Joint Committee on Public Ethics has ordered him to surrender his earnings from the project, which amount to $5.1 million. (Publishers Weekly)

“You don’t get very far into a fantasy novel before you realize you don’t know what the hell you’re writing about—so you better get to maps.” Marlon James shares the map he designed for the world of his next book, Moon Witch, Spider King—the second installment in his Dark Star Trilogy. (Entertainment Weekly)

In his announcement of his favorite books of the year, Barack Obama writes, “Art always sustains and nourishes the soul.” The former president’s list includes Matrix by Lauren Groff and The Love Songs of W. E. B. Du Bois by Honorée Fanonne Jeffers.

“My intention was also to imbue the collection with hope. My young life was filled with blows—every day, a new abuse—but as an adult, I’ve been really fortunate to have a good life.” Jennifer Fliss discusses the dark and light elements of her debut story collection, The Predatory Animal Ball. (Rumpus)

Seven translators, whose languages include Nepali and Euskara/Basque, offer a window into their translation practices. (Electric Literature)