Patricia Bell-Scott about the author

// Extended Bio //



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“You need to know some of the veterans of the battle whose shoulders you now stand on.”

—PAULI MURRAY to Patricia Bell-Scott, December 12, 1983

Patricia Bell-Scott is an award-winning author and professor emerita of women’s studies and human development and family science at the University of Georgia. Her most recent book, The Firebrand and the First Lady: Portrait of a Friendship: Pauli Murray, Eleanor Roosevelt, and the Struggle for Social Justice won the Lillian Smith Book Award and was named Booklist Best Adult Nonfiction Book of the Year by the American Library Association. This book was also named a finalist for the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction, and longlisted for the National Book Award. Her previous books include Life Notes: Personal Writings by Contemporary Black Women, which was a featured selection of The Quality Paperback Book Club; Flat-footed Truths: Telling Black Women’s Lives; Double Stitch: Black Women Write about Mothers and Daughters, which won the Letitia Woods Brown Memorial Book Prize, and All the Women Are White, All the Blacks Are Men, But Some of Us Are Brave: Black Women’s Studies, an award-winning textbook that was named to the Black Issues Books Review list of “Books that Made the Century Great.”

Bell-Scott served for a decade as co-founding editor of SAGE: A Scholarly Journal on Black Women. She is a former contributing editor to Ms. Magazine. She is also a cofounder of the National Women’s Studies Association, for which she served as co-convener of the inaugural coordinating council.

She has held post-doctoral fellowships at the John F. Kennedy School of Government and the W.E.B. DuBois Institute at Harvard University, as well as the Jane and Harry Willson Center for the Humanities and the Arts at the University of Georgia.

She has held professorial, research, and administrative appointments at the University of Connecticut, the Wellesley College Center for Research on Women, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and her alma mater, the University of Tennessee. A distinguished teacher, she is a cofounder of the University of Georgia Teaching Academy. She has also been honored by a diverse group of professional societies and institutions, including the Research on Women Special Interest Group of the American Educational Research Association, Division 35 (Psychology of Women) of the American Psychological Association, the Connecticut Chapter of the Coalition of 100 Black Women; The Journal of Negro Education; the National Council on Family Relations. the National Association for Women in Education, and the National Institute for Women of Color.

A native of Chattanooga, Tennessee, Bell-Scott lives in Athens, Georgia with her husband, Charles Vernon Underwood Jr., a retired Tennessee Valley Authority information technology manager.