Zero is the Whole I Fall into at Night Main Street Rag Publishing Company, 2011. Becky Thompson, writer, teacher, and activist came to poetry after writing scholarly books: When the Center is on Fire, A Promise and a Way of Life, A Hunger So Wide and So Deep, and Mothering without a Compass. Her most recent coedited volume is Fingernails Across the Chalkboard: Poetry and Prose on HIV/AIDS From the Black Diaspora. Becky has been awarded Rockefeller, Ford, NEH, and AAUW fellowships, the Gustavus Myers Award for Outstanding Books on Human Rights, and the 2011 Creative Justice Press Winter Chapbook Prize. She has worked with marvelous students at Duke University, Wesleyan University, Bowdoin College, and the University of Colorado and is currently Professor of Sociology at Simmons College. She teaches yoga and lives with her rock star daughter and housemate in Jamaica Plain, an eclectic multiracial community in Boston.
When the Center is on Fire: Passionate Social Theory for Our Times, co-authored with Diane Harriford. University of Texas Press. June, 2008. This book examines key 19th and 20th century sociological concepts while reframing them to help understand 21st century social upheavals including Hurricane Katrina, the 9/11 attack, the Abu Ghraib prison abuses and the Columbine massacre. The book considers the work of Marx, Du Bois, Durkheim, and Weber along with contemporary theory offered by Anzaldúa, Collins, Lorde, and others. Nominated for the 2010 Public History Prize.
Fingernails Across the Chalkboard: Poetry and Prose on HIV/AIDS from the African Diaspora, co-edited with Randall Horton and Michael Harper. Third World Press, 2007. An international, multicultural anthology of literary criticism, poetry, fiction, visual art, and literary nonfiction on HIV/AIDS. Publication date coincided with the Gwendolyn Brooks Conference and World AIDS Day (25th year commemoration). Adapted into a play that premiered in Chicago and at the National Black Theater, Harlem, New York. March, 2008.
A Promise and a Way of Life: White Antiracist Activism. University of Minnesota Press, 2001. A social movement history of antiracist activism from the 1950s to the present in the U.S.
Mothering Without a Compass: White Mother’s Love, Black Son’s Courage. University of Minnesota Press, 2000. Book on interracial mothering, open adoption, sexuality, socialization, and loving. Chosen by the Book of the Month Club for their gay and lesbian series (Insight Out).
Names We Call Home: Autobiography on Racial Identity edited by Becky Thompson and Sangeeta Tyagi. New York: Routledge, Kegan and Paul, 1996. A twenty-six chapter volume of original autobiographical essays by scholars and activists about racial identity formation. Authors include: Angela Davis, June Jordan, Ruth Frankenberg, Cherríe Moraga, David Wellman and others.
A Hunger So Wide and So Deep: A Multiracial View of Women’s Eating Problems Minneapolis, Minnesota: University of Minnesota Press, 1994. Paperback, 1996. Fifth printing. A feminist theory of the effects of trauma on women’s embodiment based on life history interviews with African American, Latina and white women. A featured book at the American Booksellers’ Association 1994 convention and selected for re-publication by the Quality Paperback Book Club. Awarded support from the Margaret Hartley Fund for Excellence in writing by and about women.
Beyond a Dream Deferred: Multicultural Education and the Politics of Excellence edited by Becky Thompson and Sangeeta Tyagi. Foreword by Derrick Bell. Minneapolis, Minnesota: University of Minnesota Press, 1993. A multidisciplinary anthology offering progressive perspectives on multicultural education. Includes chapters by Margaret Andersen, Estelle Disch,Troy Duster, Evelynn Hammonds, Evelyn Hu-DeHart, Chandra Mohanty, Barbara Omolade, Cornel West and other theorists. Won the Gustavus Myers Award for Outstanding Book on Human Rights.