Feminist Pilgrimage: Journeys of Discovery

Feminist Pilgrimage: Journeys of Discovery is a collection of personal essays exploring the concept of pilgrimage within a feminist context. Contributors examine the meaning of a feminist pilgrimage in diverse and creative ways. The collection features an inspiring array of contemporary feminist writers, artists, educators, and scholars. The project is currently in progress and will be published in 2020 by Litwin Books. A few examples from the collection are:

  • six feminists traveling to a cat sanctuary in Hawaii
  • a woman’s journey to visit her childhood home in Allahabad
  • a pilgrimage to explore sites related to the psychology of women in Paris
  • a Black Feminist’s academic journey as a healing experience
  • traveling to view the original prints of Anne Brigman
  • moving from the East Coast of the United States to California for a new life
  • preparing oneself for a call as an artist and healer
  • living a new life on a Pagan commune in New Mexico
  • an artist viewing Judy Chicago’s The Dinner Party installation
  • bicycling as a path to self-discovery and self-assertion
  • the transformative experience of walking the Camino de Santiago from Portugal to Spain
  • the story of nine women creating and sustaining a retreat for writing and support.


Stacy Russo, a librarian and associate professor at Santa Ana College in Santa Ana, California, is a writer, poet, and artist. Her book publications include A Better World Starts Here: Activists and Their Work (Sanctuary Publishers); Love Activism (Litwin Books); We Were Going to Change the World: Interviews with Women from the 1970s/1980s Southern California Punk Rock Scene (Santa Monica Press); Life as Activism: June Jordan’s Writings from The Progressive (Litwin Books); and The Library as Place in California (McFarland). Stacy's books have been featured on National Public Radio, Pacifica Radio, the Canadian Broadcasting System, Sirius XM Radio, KCET Artbound, LA Weekly, and various other media channels. Her articles, poetry, and reviews have appeared in Feminist Teacher, Feminist Collections, American Libraries, Counterpoise, Library Journal, Chaffey Review, Serials Review, and the anthology Open Doors: An Invitation to Poetry (Chaparral Canyon Press). Her poetry chapbooks are Everyday Magic (Finishing Line Press) and The Moon and Other Poems (Dancing Girl Press). Stacy is a collage artist. She uses magazines, old books, acrylic paint, cardboard, and wood in her creations. She holds degrees from the University of California, Berkeley; Chapman University; and San Jose State University.

Please reach the editor at stacy@love-activism.com with any questions.


Amanda L. Armstrong earned her master’s degree in child development with a specialization in administration from Erikson Institute. Currently, she is a doctoral candidate at New Mexico State University’s (NMSU) Department of Curriculum and Instruction in the College of Education. Her research interests include the intersection of early childhood, learning design and technology, and issues of culture and diversity. She is also NMSU’s Learning Games Lab Coordinator, where she leads user-testing sessions and teaches summer sessions focused on game design and evaluation with youth. She is a founding member of KidMap, an organization that advocates for diversity and inclusiveness in children’s media, and was recently a member of the Technical Working Group to refresh the ISTE Standards for Educators. Before coming to NMSU, Amanda was the program coordinator at the TEC Center at Erikson Institute, where she supported teachers and parents in using technology and media with young children.

Laila Brown earned a master’s in Library and Information Science from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. She is especially interested in reader response in the social dimension, and exploration of reading and writing as feminist acts. Her thesis research demonstrated how participation in book clubs that espouse feminist, progressive, and diversity-oriented ethics inspire members to create deeper, more insightful connections between these values and librarianship. She is an advocate for equitable access to information, and seeks to advance intersectional feminism through writing, conversation, and promotion of inclusive critical thinking.

Indra Chopra is a reporter, copy editor, researcher, and writer with over twenty years of experience. She has contributed to various publications in India, the Middle East, Hong Kong, and online content. Her personal blog TRAVTRAILS.COM highlights her journies across lands and seas. She is a guest blogger at www.tripatini.com and www.internationaltravelallaince.com. Indra has a Masters in English Literature from Allahabad University and a Certificate in Journalism from Stanford University.

Nina Clements earned an MFA in creative writing from Sarah Lawrence College and is the author of the poetry chapbook Set the Table, published by Finishing Line Press. She works as a librarian in Southern California.

LeeRay Costa is Professor and Director of Gender and Women’s Studies at Hollins University. She is trained as a feminist cultural anthropologist, and her current work explores the intersection of feminist and womanist theories of social justice and embodied contemplative practice and theory in educational settings and in social justice activism. Dr. Costa seeks to nurture beloved community and to create a transformative learning environment where students feel empowered to think critically and self-reflexively, and where they are inspired to vision and create human flourishing and planetary justice. Dr. Costa is co-founder of the Hollins Contemplative Collective, which seeks to cultivate the holistic well-being of faculty, staff, and students. In 2015 she walked 400 miles on the Camino de Santiago, from Lisbon, Portugal to Santiago, Spain. Her work has appeared in the Journal of Contemplative Inquiry (forthcoming 2018), Feminist Teacher, Transformations, and Women’s Studies Quarterly.

Sarah Rafael García is a writer, community educator, and traveler. Since publishing Las Niñas (Floricanto Press 2008), she founded Barrio Writers, LibroMobile, and Crear Studio. She is an editor for the Barrio Writers and pariahs: writing from outside the margins anthologies. In 2016, Sarah Rafael was awarded for SanTana’s Fairy Tales (Raspa Magazine 2017), which was supported in part by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, through a grant supporting the Artist-in-Residence initiative at California State University, Fullerton Grand Central Art Center. In 2018, she participated in a collaborative artist residency at The Guesthouse, Cork, Ireland and was honored as an Emerging Artist at the 19th Annual Orange County Arts Awards. Currently, she spends her days stacking books at LibroMobile, providing interdisciplinary literary arts workshops, and juggling time to write in Santa Ana, California.

Cass Hartnett began her career shelving fiction books at the Plattsburgh Public Library. She has been employed at the University of Michigan Library (Research Library Residency Program), the University of Michigan School of Information, and Detroit Public Library. She currently serves as US Documents Librarian and Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies Librarian at the University of Washington Libraries. She also serves as affiliate faculty at the University of Washington Information School, teaching LIS 526 (Government Information). She is a cofounder of the Northwest Government Information Network (NGIN) and was 2008–2009 chair of the American Library Association’s Government Documents Round Table. With colleague Kian Flynn, she co-authored “Cutting through the Fog: Government Information, Librarians, and the Forty-Fifth Presidency” for Reference & User Services Quarterly. She was named the University of Washington Distinguished Librarian, 2016.

Sarah Hastings is a Professor of Psychology and Director of Women’s and Gender Studies at Radford University. Her research explores socio-cultural factors related to women’s health and well-being. She has recently published a chapter exploring misogyny in American education and an essay titled “Mapping Well-Being: Reflections on the Role of Place in Healthy Human Functioning.”

Wild interests and an inclination to rage against the machine with a flair that could equal the groupies and rock stars who fascinate her, Lucretia Tye Jasmine earned a BFA in film from NYU (University Honors Scholar), and an MFA in Critical Studies from CalArts. Veganism and feminism are primary themes as Lucretia deconstructs complicity and glamour. Alien She, MoPOP, the Museum of Broken Relationships, and the Punk Museum Los Angeles exhibited her work. The Getty Center; Duke University's Rare Book archives; and NYU's Fales Special Collections Library house some of her films and zines. An award-winning writer published in Women Who Rock: From Bessie to Beyoncé, Grrrl Groups to Riot Grrrl, Evelyn McDonnell, ed., (2018), and Let It Bleed: How To Write A Rockin' Memoir, Pamela Des Barres, ed., (2017), Lucretia's currently working on two oral history mixtape zines: riot grrrl Los Angeles 1993-1995 and The Groupie Gospels.

Elizabeth Kenneday, an Emeritá Professor of Art at the California State University in Long Beach, is an artist and author. A recipient of a Fulbright Scholar Fellowship at the University of Iceland, her activities in environmental education through art have led to numerous lectures at international conferences in Europe and North America, and her writings on the subject have appeared in various publications. Her artworks have been exhibited internationally and widely collected, and she has been the recipient of many awards, most recently a Julia Margaret Cameron award in the Cell Phone photography category. Her book Regarding Mono Lake: Novelty and Delight at an Inland Sea, released in 2014, received an Eric Hoffer Finalist Award in Small Press Publishing in the Art category. She currently lives with her husband in Reno, Nevada.

Annie Knight is a librarian, artist, and traveler who lives in Santa Ana, California. She was born in Riverside, California, and continues to honor her Inland Empire roots. She is also a lifelong zinester and D.I.Y. advocate and is a member of the Zineworks artist collective.

Collectively, the Lazy Bottoms are eight female faculty from East Carolina University and one nurse at Vidant Medical Center in Greenville, NC. They represent three different colleges and seven different departments. Anne Ticknor is Associate Professor in the Department of Literacy Studies, English Education, and History Education. Paige Averett is Professor and Director of Graduate Programs in the School of Social Work. Allison Crowe is Associate Professor and Program Coordinator in the ECU Counselor Education Program. Anna Froula is Associate Professor of Film Studies in the Department of English. Cindy Grace-McCaskey is Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology. Jennifer McKinnon is Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of History Program in Maritime Studies. Stacy Weiss is Associate Professor of Special Education. Amanda Klein is Associate Professor of Film Studies in the English Department at East Carolina University. Amber Wigent is a Critical Care Registered Nurse.

Valeria E. Molteni has a Licensure in Librarianship and Documentation from the National University of Mar del Plata, Argentina; a Master of Science in Information Studies from the University of Texas at Austin; and PhD coursework from the University of Granada, Spain. She has worked as an academic and special librarian in Argentina and USA. Valeria worked at the Benson Collection at University of Texas in Austin; as the Multicultural and Outreach Librarian at California State University, Dominguez Hills; and as Academic Liaison Librarian and interim Associate Dean for Research and Scholarship at the MLK Library, San José State University. Currently she is the Dean of Library Services at Menlo College, Atherton, California. She has published journal articles, book chapters, and conference presentations on the analysis of scientific production, on the evaluation of university research systems, on electronic journal collections, on library instruction and services for international and bilingual populations, and on spaces in academic libraries.

Leah Jane Oliver is a dancer-poet-librarian living in Upstate NY.

Anya Ravitz is a National Certified Counselor (NCC) and mental health counselor working in a methadone clinic. She is committed to helping others discover their self-worth and developing a strong sense of identity. Her writing can be found in Body Love 4 All Global Zine: Our Journey to Body Love, On the Margins, The Architect’s Newsletter, and ArchitectureWeek. She lives in Chicago with her wonderful partner, Mike, and their two cats, Molly and Tabitha.

Jana Remy is the Director of Educational Technology at Chapman University and holds a Ph.D. in History from the University of California, Irvine. She teaches courses in Disability History and Digital Humanities. In her free time she grows organic veggies, posts food pictures to Instagram, and paddles outrigger canoes on the ocean. She lives in Santa Ana, California, with Stijn, EllyCat, and MaruMaruMoMo-san.

Cindy Rinne creates art and writes in San Bernardino, California. She gathers world stories and brings myth to life in contemporary context. Cindy is the author of seven books: Mapless with Nikia Chaney (Cholla Needles Press), Moon of Many Petals (Cholla Needles Press), Listen to the Codex (Yak Press), Breathe In Daisy, Breathe Out Stones (FutureCycle Press), and others. She is a founding member of PoetrIE, a literary community and a finalist for the 2016 Hillary Gravendyk Prize. Her poetry appeared or is forthcoming in: Birds Piled Loosely, Home Planet News, Outlook Springs, The Wild Word (Berlin), Storyscape Journal, Event Horizon Magazine, Anti-Herion Chic, Mojave River Review, several anthologies, and others. Visit her website at www.fiberverse.com.

Alison Stankrauff is the University Archivist at Wayne State University. She has a Masters in Library and Information Science with a Concentration on Archival Administration from Wayne State University (2002). She has a Bachelors in History from Antioch College (1996). She has been at Wayne State since September 2017. Previous to that she was the University Archivist and an Associate Librarian at Indiana University South Bend from 2004 to August 2017. Prior to that she served as Reference Archivist at American Jewish Archives from 2002 to 2004.

Jie Tian is a poet, librarian, ecological artist, and holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of California, Riverside. She has received residency awards from Hedgebrook and Djerassi Resident Artists Program. Her poems, essays, and reviews appeared in Pearl, Spillway, Squaw Valley Review, Solo Novo, Sentence: A Journal of Prose Poetics, Asian American Short Story Writers, and Asian American Playwrights. She is working on a multimedia poetry project on migration that employs print, digital, and book arts tradition. This project marks a healing journey for Jie in the practice of ecological arts, including growing plant materials for natural dye, papermaking, and book making.

Trysh Travis is an Associate Professor in the Center for Gender, Sexualities, and Women’s Studies Research, University of Florida, where she teaches courses in gender and popular culture, the history of Anglo American feminism, and the gendered history of medicine. She is the author of The Language of the Heart: The Recovery Movement from Alcoholics Anonymous to Oprah Winfrey (UNC, 2009) and co-editor (with Timothy Aubry) of Rethinking Therapeutic Culture (Chicago, 2016). She is also the co-founder of and a frequent contributor to Points: the Blog of the Alcohol and Drug History Society. Her non-academic work can be found in Raritan: A Quarterly Review, The American Historian, Inside Higher Ed, and The Chronicle of Higher Education, among other venues.

Holiday Vega is a graduate student in library and information science at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. She is conducting her thesis research on public libraries and homelessness and the partnerships between libraries and social services. She is also completing a research study on LGBTQ-targeted harassment in online video game streaming communities. She earned a Masters in Social Work from Tulane University in New Orleans, and specialized in trauma-informed care for victims and survivors of sex trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation. Her research interests are in social justice in librarianship, virtual communities and mental health, readers’ response theory as applied to other forms of media, and feminist gamer culture.

Lise Weil is an award-winning editor and translator. Her memoir, In Search of Pure Lust, appeared in June with She Writes Press in the U.S. and Inanna Press in Canada. She is founding editor of Dark Matter: Women Witnessing and was founder and editor of both Trivia: A Journal of Ideas (1982-1991) and Trivia: Voices of Feminism (2003-2011). She teaches in the Goddard Graduate Institute. Born in Chicago, she moved to Montreal in 1990.

D.D. Wood started her writing career as a singer-songwriter for Walt Disney’s Hollywood Records, where her songs were used in various Disney films. She received rave reviews for her solo albums Tuesdays are Forever and Songs for the Red King, and has played with many well-respected artists, including Chris Isaak, Willie Nelson, Emmylou Harris, Leon Russell and Rosanne Cash. D.D. currently teaches 11th grade Honors and AP English in the Compass Music and Arts program in Long Beach, California, and is actively involved in mentoring students gifted in the arts. She has a Master’s degree in Education, and has achieved National Board Certification in Young Adult English. She is also a Adjunct Professor for Concordia University's MAED program. D.D. began writing her first YA novel, The Year I Lost You, through a fellowship to the Vermont Writer’s Studio and has now completed her second novel, Punk Rock Princess, and is currently working on her book of humorous essays, Saturday Stories.

The following is information related to the original call for proposals.

Personal essay contributions are desired for a proposed edited book: Feminist Pilgrimage: Journeys of Discovery.

How is "Feminist Pilgrimage" Being Defined?

Within this context, a feminist pilgrimage is understood as one of the following:

• a journey taken to visit an important feminist landmark, artwork, or individual.

• traveling to a destination as a means of radical self-care, discovery, and/or healing, such as returning to one's home land; taking a solo road trip; going on a personal or group retreat; or making a journey to a place that has deep personal meaning.

• a pilgrimage taken for personal or professional reasons that is performed with a feminist vision.

How is Feminism Being Defined?

There are many definitions and understandings of feminism. One’s understanding may also evolve over time through personal and collective experiences. For the purposes of allowing for the most self-expression and freedom in the creative process, the editor is not providing an overarching definition.


All genders are welcome as contributors. Only non-fiction, first-person accounts are desired. Writing should be in the form of a personal essay. Text-only works and works including artwork with text will be considered. Fictional pieces and poetry will not be accepted. Original works that have not been previously published are preferred. Previously published essays will be considered, but you will need to gain permissions for re-publication and provide proof of the permission. Writing should be free of highly theoretical language and academic jargon. Footnotes and references, if any, should be minor. Tone should be for a crossover general and academic audience.


Please submit proposals of up to 500 words by November 1, 2018. Include an author’s bio of up to 150 words. Within your proposal, please provide a clear representation of what your essay will entail. What was your pilgrimage? Where did you travel? What did you discover? Why was the pilgrimage important to you? How does it relate to your understanding of feminism? After review of your proposal, you will be contacted regarding your submission. Please do not submit completed works at this stage. Send your proposal to stacy@love-activism.com

Final Essays

If your proposal is accepted, your final essay must be 1,500 - 3,000 words and submitted publication-ready. If you believe your piece requires a good amount of editing or it does not fit within the required word count, please seek the assistance of the editor prior to your final submission. Pieces that require extensive editing will not be published.


• Deadline for Proposals and Bios: November 1, 2018

• Notifications on Proposals Sent: December 1, 2018

• Deadline for Publication-Ready Essays: June 1, 2019

All contributors will receive a copy of the published book and will be invited to participate in any book-related events.