Sing a Rhythm, Dance a Blues: Education for the Liberation of Black and Brown Girls
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About the Author
Monique W. Morris is President/CEO of Grantmakers for Girls of Color and co-founder of the National Black Women's Justice Institute. She is an award-winning author, filmmaker, and social justice scholar-advocate. Her books include Pushout and Black Stats.
Praise for Sing a Rhythm, Dance a Blues
"Sing a Rhythm, Dance a Blues is a vital, generous and sensitively reasoned argument for how we might transform American schools to better educate black and brown girls. Nobody paying attention could honestly deny that we desperately need a kinder approach. Educators would be well-advised to consider Morris' humane strategies."
--San Francisco Chronicle Datebook
"This is a carefully crafted, heartfelt, solution-oriented source for educators and policy makers."
"Sing a Rhythm, Dance a Blues is a brilliant and beautiful book. Drawing on rigorous scholarly analysis and deep engagement with the narratives of educational stakeholders, Morris articulates a lucid and audacious freedom dream for Black girls. Like an African rhythm, the book speaks to our souls and our feet, daring us to reimagine the world and demanding that we radically reshape our policy and practice. Like the blues, Morris's writing is compelling, honest, and raw, but brimming with hope. Anyone interested in the lives of Black girls must read, recommend, share, study, and teach this text!"
--Marc Lamont Hill, BET correspondent and author of Nobody
"Black girls are not often at the center of the stories we read. Monique Morris's work is a wonderful exception. Her passionate book explains how the real world--specifically schools--ignores, misreads, and mistreats us. This much-needed book is so important because it shows how Black and brown girls, with the help of the teachers and people who love them, can write new stories that replace the fiction about our worth, our abilities, and ourselves."
--Marley Dias, founder of #1000BlackGirlBooks and author of Marley Dias Gets It Done: And So Can You!
"Not many, if any, books detail how to uplift and heal Black and Brown girls in real time in ways that are loving, focused on thriving, and practical, but Monique W. Morris has done it. Through rich and vivid storytelling backed by data and research, Morris gives us a pedagogical road map to our own humanity as educators by way of empowering Black and Brown girls. Each chapter helps the reader find their song, so they can sing a rhythm for our girls."
--Bettina L. Love, author of We Want to Do More Than Survive
"Morris is a force and a light, and this book invigorates the soul. It should be required reading for all teachers and it's essential reading for anyone working to create a world where girls and women are truly liberated and loved."
--Susan Burton, founder of A New Way of Life and author of Becoming Ms. Burton
"With Pushout, Monique Morris brought the world to its knees and widened our eyes to see how systems have been designed to wrong our most vulnerable and brilliant young people. In Sing a Rhythm, Dance a Blues, she takes us on a deeper journey and offers us a way to reimagine schools and a path towards real solutions."
--Christopher Emdin, author of For White Folks Who Teach in the Hood
"This beautiful book fills me with hope that our schools and our society can learn to nurture the tremendous untapped potential of Black and Brown girls. Through compelling and powerful stories, Dr. Morris shows how to support girls facing huge challenges to succeed as students, as artists, or as activists--and at loving themselves."
--Naomi Wadler, activist and advocate for gun control
"Monique Morris's vision for our girls is powerfully expansive. She's an inspiration to me and to all of us working to unleash their infinite potential."
--Beverly Bond, celebrity DJ and founder of Black Girls Rock!
"Monique Morris is a personal shero of mine and a respected expert in this space."
--Ayanna Pressley, U.S. congresswoman