bell hooks—the pioneering feminist poet, critic, activist, and educator—has died at age 69. hooks wrote several dozen impactful books, from her first poetry collection And There We Wept in 1978 to the highly influential Ain't I a Woman? Black Women and Feminism and Feminist Theory: From Margin to Center. From NPR:
Frequently, hooks' work addressed the deep intersections of race, gender, class, sexuality and geographic place. She wrote about her native Appalachia, and growing up there as a Black girl, in the critical-essay collection belonging: a culture of place, and in the poetry collection Appalachian Elegy: Poetry and Place.
In a 2000 interview with All Things Considered, hooks spoke about the life-changing power of love—that is, the act of loving, and how love is far broader than romantic sentiment. "I'm talking about a love that is transformative, that challenges us in both our private and our civic lives," she said. "I'm so moved often when I think of the civil rights movement, because I see it as a great movement for social justice that was rooted in love and that politicized the notion of love, that said: Real love will change you."