Writers, especially Black women journalists, use their platforms and craft pieces that shift the public eye. Whether its redefining pop culture or exploring African American history, these women are writing groundbreaking pieces worthy of critical acclaim.

According to a Pew Research Center report, Black people represent 6 percent of reporting journalists, and there are less women than men in the newsroom. Although Black women journalists make up a small portion of the industry, their impact is felt across the world. In addition to their journalistic work, they publish books that impact society and shift the mindsets of anyone who comes across them.

Black women writers are using their voices to amplify the stories of the underrepresented. They bring the truth in any situation to the forefront. As Black History Month comes to a close and Women’s History Month begins, here are five Black women writers changing the world with their powerful words.

Isabel Wilkerson

Isabel Wilkerson’s lyrical and descriptive writing shines a light on marginalized communities and amplifies their stories. The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist penned two books: “The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration” and “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents.” The latter is the subject of Ava Duvernay’s latest film “Origin,” which showcases Wilkerson’s writing process and the historical truth in her words.

As shown in the film, Wilkerson’s work may begin with a thought. However, she uses her investigative journalism skills to dig deeper. The Howard University graduate has a visionary mind, allowing her to weave together ideas that seem starkly different seamlessly. The final product always touches the hearts and minds of many. Her projects have earned her critical acclaim and the position of a leader in narrative non-fiction.

Danyel Smith

Danyel Smith is a journalist devoted to telling the impactful stories in pop culture. The award-winning reporter, editor, podcast host, producer and author uses her platform to share the musical genre’s rhythm, resilience and power. In the midst of her incredible journalistic career, Smith has penned three books. Her latest book, “Shine Bright: A Very Personal History of Black Women in Pop,” explores Black women’s influence on pop, from Phillis Wheatley, an enslaved woman who sang her poems, and ending to modern-day legends.

Smith, who is a former editor at Billboard and editor-in-chief at VIBE, has always had a passion for culture. Whether its her books, her podcast or her articles, she is always advocating for creatives and amplifying important stories.

Nikole Hannah-Jones

Nikole Hannah-Jones is a Pulitzer prize-winning journalist, whose work centers around racial injustice. The 1619 Project originally released in the New York Times Magazine in August 2019. It marked 400 years since the beginning of American slavery. The essay eventually turned into a non-fiction book and a six-part docuseries on Hulu. She also co-wrote the children’s book iteration of the project, titled “Born on the Water.” Both books debuted at the top spot on the New York Times bestsellers list.

Whether it’s through her articles, book, speeches or the docuseries, Hannah-Jones empowers Black Americans with her words. She uses her platform to give the community the full picture of their entire history.

Allissa V. Richardson

Allissa Richardson’s research focuses on the new age of journalism that includes mobile and social media use. In her book, “Bearing Witness While Black: African Americans, Smartphones and the New Protest #Journalism,” she follows 15 fellow journalists who used their cell phones and social media channels to report on the Black Lives Matter movement in 2014 to 2018.

Richardson is a pioneer in the mobile journalism space. Her award-winning book and her work as both a teacher and journalist inspires the next generation of reporters. She encourages them to embrace the new form of storytelling.

Candice Marie Benbow

Candice Marie Benbow’s work focuses on Black women’s experience, including everything from faith to culture. In 2022, she released an essay collection, titled “Red Lip Theology.” The novel explores freedom, self-love, and divine wholeness in a progressive Christian faith. Touching on themes of heartache, loss and sexuality, Benbow empowers Black church-going women who want to feel loved by the church.

She uses her platform to tell the stories of Black women, challenge religious institutions and empower others to live truthfully in their faith. Her book, along with her articles, serves as a declaration of all that she is and all that she wants her fellow women to be.