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16-Year-Old Author Olivia V.G. Clarke Publishes Anthology About Black Girls Who Break Barriers


Olivia V.G. Clarke means business. The 16-year-old student, activist, and published author has recently released an anthology, Black Girl White School: Thriving, Surviving, and No, You Can’t Touch My Hair, which includes 123 pages of poems, essays, and stories from Black girls and women ages 12 to 22. They write about what it’s like to be a Black girl navigating spaces in which they are often the only Black girls doing so.

This is something Olivia can speak about from personal experience. As a student at Columbus School for Girls, she has spent most of her youth engaging in political and racial politics. It’s often not an easy road to take, but Olivia has channeled her experiences into something that can help others.

The idea for her book struck her one day, so she ran it by her mom. “I said, ‘how cool would it be to have a book to help other [Black] girls in predominantly white institutions, who either go to one or graduated or are preparing to go? And just have stories, anecdotes and poems to help them feel supported?’”

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