Miss Behave


Upon encountering historian Laurel Thatcher Ulrich’s quote, ‘well-behaved women seldom make history’, Malebo Sephodi knew that she was tired of everyone else having a say on who and what she should be. Appropriating this quote, Malebo boldly renounces societal expectations placed on her as a black woman and shares her journey towards misbehaviour. According to Malebo, it is the norm for a black woman to live in a society that prescribes what it means to be a well-behaved woman. Acting like this prescribed woman equals good behaviour. But what happens when a black woman decides to live her own life and becomes her own form of who she wants to be? She is often seen as misbehaving. 

Miss-Behave challenges society’s deep-seated beliefs about what it means to be an obedient woman. In this book, Malebo tracks her journey on a path towards achieving total autonomy and self-determinism. Miss-Behave will challenge, rattle and occasionally cause you to scream ‘yassss, yassss, yassss’ at various intervals. 


• One woman’s quest to break the stereotypical roles set out for her by society.

• Introduces the concept of feminism in an easy-to- understand way.

• Allows discussions about identity and gender issues.


Malebo Sephodi is an activist and writer who takes special interest in gender, development, science and economics in Africa. She is known as ‘Lioness’ and describes her life as nomadic. She is the founder of Lady Leader, a platform that allows black women to just be.


1 Misbehaving The history story of the quote and Malebo’s encounter with it. 
2 Patriarchy is such a trip though Cases of masculinities, how they are normalised and how women are defined by masculinities. 
3 How about I think like myself Malebo’s response to ‘act like a lady, think like a man’, ‘fascinating womanhood’, and the whole culture of ‘fixing’ the black woman. 
4 Image Distortions From being made in the image of God (male God) and Malebo’s long-time obsession with her body to society and body image issues. 
5 Jezebel Addresses this oversexed trope of the black woman, where it comes from and how this culture has developed till today. 
6 You may now kiss your husband This chapter looks at traditions, such as lobola and ukuthwala, and how they don’t necessarily mean cultures are correct. 
7 Beyond the Quotas Agency for black women – and not just cheerleaders or gatekeepers. 
8 Having it all – The art to leaning in Not caring about balance. 
9 Self Care as Warfare Why it’s warfare to self-care. 
10 Just Be What having agency looks like.

ISBN 978-1-928337-41-6 
GENRE Non-fiction/Memoir
FORMAT Paperback
SIZE 210x148mm
EXTENT 200pp
RIGHTS World Rights
RELEASE May 2017