Bygone Badass Broads: 52 Forgotten Women Who Changed the World by Mackenzi Lee
Publication: February 27th, 2018
Based on Mackenzi Lee’s popular weekly Twitter series of the same name, Bygone Badass Broads features 52 remarkable and forgotten trailblazing women from all over the world. With tales of heroism and cunning, in-depth bios and witty storytelling, Bygone Badass Broads gives new life to these historic female pioneers. Starting in the fifth century BC and continuing to the present, the book takes a closer look at bold and inspiring women who dared to step outside the traditional gender roles of their time. Coupled with riveting illustrations and Lee’s humorous and conversational storytelling style, this book is an outright celebration of the badass women who paved the way for the rest of us.
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This book is a non-fiction about forgotten women in history so my review is more of a discussion review obviously. I love this book because I got to read about women I didn’t even know and they were honestly some amazing women. They have done so many things that you would not believe some of which is dangerous. I love the way Lee wrote the book in a humorous way. It made the book easier to read and very enjoyable because it didn’t feel like a history lesson. I will discuss some of my favorites below by way of quotes.
Hatshepsut- “The most impressive was the temple of Hatshepsut at Deir el-Bahri in Thebes, as well a ten-story obelisk dedicated to her accomplishments and inscribed with the very modest statement, “I have always been king.”
The Tru’ng Sisters- “The Tru’ng Sisters chose thirty-six women from their volunteer ranks—including their mother—and trained them to be generals. These ladies then led eighty thousand soilders against the Chinese, with Trac and Nhi leading the charge.”
Queen Arawelo- “When she officially took power, Arawelo was ready to shake things up. Citing the past decades of war that had stricken Somalia as evidence that men break everything they touch, she packed her government with women.”
Khutulun- “Not only was Khutulun an undefeated wrestler, but she was also a cavalry soldier with nerves of steel and a kick-ass signature combat move: barreling across no man’s-land, grabbing an enemy soldier in a full nelson, yanking him off his horse, dragging him back behind her line of soldiers, and dumping him at her father’s feet.”
Mochizuki Chiyome- “Known as kunoichi, Chiyome taught her students how to pass themselves off as maids, shrine maidens, traveling entertainers, religious pilgrims, noblewomen, priestesses, and dancers to gain access to their enemies’ inner sanctums and gather secrets.”
There are many more favorites but to name my others are Dona Ana Lezama de Urinza and Dona Eustaquia de Sonza, Julie D’Aubigny, Ching Shih, Mary Anning, Friederike “Marm” Mandelbaum (HER LIFE NEEDS TO BE A MOVIE), Lakshmibai the Rani of Jhansi, Sarah Breedlove AKA Madam C.J. Walker, El Vira de La Fuente Chaudor (HER LIFE ALSO NEEDS TO BE A MOVIE), and Kumander Liwayway.
I recommend this book to everyone so you can learn about some of these women that not many people will know about.
In order for women to achieve true equality in historical narrative, we have to talk about them in the same way we do men—warts and all.