Mary McLeod Bethune in Washington, DC: Activism and Education in Logan Circle (2013).
The condition of the African American woman presents a peculiar position. At the nexus of two marginalized groups—African Americans and women—her worldview provides her with a unique vision where humanity is able to breathe freely, harness their strengths and live full lives. Through collective action in the form of the club movements as well as via individual endeavors, these women made their voices heard. Thus, the extraordinary life of Mary McLeod Bethune—which spanned two centuries, two world wars and the Great Depression–contributed significantly to this tradition. She was an educator, race leader and humanitarian. This work examines the life of Bethune when she resided in Washington, D.C., from 1943 to 1949. During this brief window of time, she grew the National Council of Negro Women (NCNW) from a small organization intended for greatness into a national organization that became the leading voice of Negro women’s activism/agency.
(This isn’t every Black woman’s story; this is my story)
So I have this thing. Whenever someone is talking to me about a subject that requires a bit of thought, I’ll always think of a particular song lyric that applies to the question as I’m thinking of an answer. For instance, let’s say somebody asks me, “Are you a feminist?” While searching the brain for a statement, I think of Mya:
I’mmmm so confused/I don’t know what to dooooooo
No matter if I knew the person was going to ask or not, I’m always confused whenever this question is asked. I’m not confused in the sense that I don’t have an answer. I have one, but it is not as direct or simple as the question. (more…)
Sisters in the Statehouse: Black Women and Legislative Decision Making
As Sisters in the Statehouse shows, it is not enough to disaggregate “women” from “Blacks.” While scholars have long advanced the notion that African American women as a group exhibit specificities informed by the intersection of race and gender that provide them with a unique worldview, it is necessary to further explore differences among Black women. This book addresses this gap by utilizing humanistic inquiry to examine the connection between descriptive and substantive representation in the case of Black women legislators. This link hinges on how such legislators see the effects of their own race-gender identity on their legislative work. By combining humanistic and social science techniques, including feminist life histories, elite interviews, and participant observation in conjunction with legislative case studies and bill sponsorship data, Nadia E. Brown presents a fuller description of how identity informs Black women state legislators’ descriptive and substantive representation. Linking personal narratives to political behavior, Brown elicits the feminist life histories of African American women legislators to understand how their experiences with racism and sexism have influenced their legislative decision-making and policy preferences. Sisters in the Statehouse is a groundbreaking inquiry into how an intersectional approach can enhance our understanding of political representation.
Are you ever really “prepared” for things to go wrong?
I recently experienced a personal crisis. It was bad. I cried (ugly cried) in public, so much to the point where a stranger had to hug me and tell me that everything would be okay. I‘m not much of a hugger, and I don’t cry all that often, so ugly crying in public while embracing a complete stranger definitely qualifies as a moment of crisis for Terranicia. (more…)
“Profiling: Books by and about Black women” wants to showcase your recent publication. A colleague recently asked me “how do you keep up with all the new publications?” I responded with laughter. It’s so hard to stay current with new publications. But, this got me to thinking… So I thought that I would open up Talking About Us to profile books that are a) written by Black women (regardless of location) and/or b) written about Black women.
Here’s How to Submit Your Book
Each submission is received on speculation. In the event that your submission is selected for publication, you will receive an email with the expected publication date. At this time, we do not pay for submissions. Submissions are ongoing.