Call to Action: Form Your Own Book Group or Chapter

The purpose behind this call to action is to create a forum for you and other women to explore ideas about Mormonism, gender, and feminism.

When we meet together to tell our stories, share our questions, and explore new ideas, we strengthen ourselves and our relationships with one another. There’s a power in naming problems and in discussing strategies to navigate the difficulties of our lives as Mormon women. There’s a power in knowing that we are not alone.

This group can be a book group, a discussion group, or a WAVE chapter, depending on the makeup of people. You might not have other feminists in your community to invite to this group. In this case, pick women you know who are compassionate and open minded and form a book group.

Suggestions for reading material, followed by comments about appropriateness of the material for various group makeups:

1.) If you want to read an article, consider the essay, “The Mormon Concept of a Heavenly Mother” by Linda Wilcox. You can find this article in the book Sisters in Spirit: Mormon Women in Historical and Cultural Perspectives or you can find it online here.  Begin a discussion with your own thoughts or questions about Heavenly Mother. (Not too edgy. Academic, objective tone. Very readable.)

2) If you want to read a novel, consider The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd.  Discuss the role of the feminine divine in the novel and the role she played in the lives of the characters. (Not at all edgy. Perfect for a Relief Society book group.)

3) If you want to read a non-fiction book, consider Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women, which has suggestions at the end of immediate things you can do to take action on behalf of women in the world. Discuss any resonances you see between your own lives and the lives of the women featured in the book. (Not necessarily edgy, but both painful and inspiring at times.)

What are your suggestions for great books or articles to read in your groups? Please share below.  Also, please let us know if you are able to form a group.


  1. I’d like to start a group in Montana. I live in Florence, about 20 minutes south of Missoula. I can’t be the only one around here right???? Who’s in?

    • Juliane,
      We’re planning to get a thread going on facebook that will let people know if there are other WAVE people in their locations. I’ll update this post when that comes out. I would love for you to connect to other like minded people in Montana!

  2. I started a book group a few months ago in my ward in an effort to find like minded individuals. It hasn’t been exactly what I thought (people are pretty conservative around here), but I think I’ve been able to stretch everyone a bit.

    I chose to do a different type of reading schedule. We all bought the anthology “Dispensation”. It’s a book of LDS short fiction stories. We read two a month so that if one is not good for discussion we have options. There are 28 stories I think, so for a decent price, we have reading material for over a year! It’s also nice because it’s not too much for busy moms to commit to, AND some of the stories actually open up some pretty interesting discussion topics. In fact, there are enough layers to most of the options that you can lead the conversation in multiple directions. Like I said, I’ve been able to introduce some new angles of thought without pushing my own agenda. It’s been interesting so far.

    • Why can’t you live closer to me, Corktree?????

      • I think you should try this where you are Juliane! People don’t find a book group threatening, and by controlling the material for a while, it might be easier to flesh out women that may identify with you on some things but are afraid to admit it for fear of being singled out or rejected. Not everyone is online, but they may think more alike to us than we imagine. At least that’s what I’m still hoping.

    • Great idea, Courtney!


  1. […] of the suggested books in the November WAVE Call to Action is “Half the Sky, “ subtitled “Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide” or […]

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