In this week’s Illustrated PEN, Guest Editor and Mutha Magazine Editor-in-Chief Meg Lemke presents an excerpt from Ronald Wimberly’s graphic narrative, Black History in Its Own Words.

“Every story I create, creates me.” —Octavia Butler

Ronald Wimberly created these bold, illustrated quotes of historical black figures—activists, artists, musicians, writers—and launched them as a book collection in February, Black History Month. It is now March, Women’s History Month, and so we feature Wimberly’s illustrations of four inspiring women from the series; because, as the artist put it, “women’s history is black history too.” 


Ronald Wimberly’s latest book, Black History in Its Own Words, is out from Image Comics. He is also the creator of Prince of Cats. Wimberly is an artist who works primarily in design and narrative. He is also an accomplished cartoonist, having designed several graphic novels as well as shorter works for DC/Vertigo, Nike, Marvel, Hill and Wang, and Dark Horse. Follow him at, and on The8AppTumblr, and Instagram.