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Women & Children First


5233 N. Clark St. Chicago, IL 60640

What are the 3 adjectives you would use to describe your bookstore?

Inclusive, Political, Community-centered

Share a quote from a book or poem that bares your bookstore’s soul.

“All that you touch You Change. All that you Change Changes you. The only lasting truth Is Change. God Is Change.”

Octavia Butler

This quote captures the last sentence of our feminist bookstore’s mission statement: In order for feminism to remain relevant, it must be forever evolving.

Why was your bookstore founded/what role does it play in the community?

Our bookstore was established in 1979 by Ann Christophersen & Linda Bubon, two graduate students who wanted their contribution to the women’s movement to be creating a safe space for women, especially women within the LGBTQ community. They did this by celebrating and amplifying the voices of underrepresented authors and activists. Today, we have evolved to be a firmly intersectional, trans-inclusive bookstore and one of the few bookstores with a physically disabled owner.

Which champion/warrior/wildcat (real or mythological) does your bookstore channel most?

Back in the day, our office walls had several Xena posters that were then replaced with Buffy Posters in the early aughts. Today, we strive to channel Riri from Chicago’s own Eve Ewing’s Ironheart.

What makes your bookstore unique?

From the inception of our bookstore, we have celebrated and amplified underrepresented voices. Recently, this niche has grown more and is more widely upheld . Our distinction is that we have always challenged ourselves to be ever in harmony with the evolution of feminism.

What is something that no one knows about your bookstore?

Hmmmmm… so many fun factoids: we’re currently the neighborhood bookstore for both Lilly Wachowski and Audrey Niffenegger! We once hosted Maya Angelou who apologized that she had too much of a sore throat to read, but then after an hour or so of signing books stood up and said, “Perhaps I will read after all.”

Image description: A multi-textured blue background, including textures and words from book pages.