Rachel Cargle Is Opening a Bookstore and Writing Center to Support Marginalized Voices

·4-min read
Photo credit: Allie Holloway
Photo credit: Allie Holloway

From Harper's BAZAAR

  • Academic and activist Rachel Cargle announced that she's opening Elizabeth's Bookshop & Writing Centre in her hometown Akron, Ohio.

  • The shop has launched online and will open a physical store once it's deemed safe amid the coronavirus pandemic.

  • Cargle also shared her #Revolution Reading List filled with resources applicable to the current police brutality protests and the ongoing fight for racial justice.

  • Proceeds from the store will benefit The Loveland Foundation, which provides therapy and mental health resources to Black women and girls.

Prominent writer, academic, and activist Rachel Cargle has forged an online community and following by sharing educational tools for dismantling racism and systems of oppression. Now, she's expanding her work with a new bookstore and writing center in her hometown of Akron, Ohio. Called Elizabeth's Bookshop & Writing Centre, the endeavor encourages people to "reimagine the literary landscape" by highlighting works by authors and voices from marginalized communities.

"Equal parts bookshop and writing center, Elizabeth's is committed to contributing to Akron's vibrant economic resurgence as a safe gathering space rooted in the values of community, curiosity, justice, and joy," the new business explained on Instagram.

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A percentage of all the shop's proceeds will benefit The Loveland Foundation, which Cargle founded in 2018 to provide therapy, mental health support, and healing resources for Black women and girls.

Although the brick-and-mortar store is not physically open yet, as the country continues to observe social distancing guidelines to quell the coronavirus, Elizabeth's has already launched online through Bookshop and features several curated lists of books including Cargle's personal reading collection and works by Black women, LGBTQ writers, indigenous authors, and more.

Most importantly, the site includes Cargle's newly launched #Revolution Reading List, featuring timely and necessary reads about the Black experience, as the country continues to protest racism and police brutality. "The books I handpicked for this list are excellent resources as you deep dive into my equation mentioned in my public address on Revolution: Knowledge+Empathy+Action," Cargle wrote.

For white people and non-Black POC hoping to be better allies in the continued fight for justice, research and education are great places to start. Shop and read Cargle's picks below, and read her writing for BAZAAR.com here.

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