Recovering the Black Female Body Self-Representation by African American Women

ISBN-10: 0813528399

ISBN-13: 9780813528397

Edition: 2000

Authors: Michael Bennett, Vanessa D. Dickerson, Margaret Bass, Dorri Beam, Daphne A. Brooks

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Despite the recent flood of scholarly work investigating the interrelated issues of race, gender, and representation, little has been written about black women's depictions of their own bodies. Both past and present-day American cultural discourse has attempted either to hypereroticize the black female body or make it a site of impropriety and crime.The essays in this volume focus on how African American women, from the nineteenth century to the present, have represented their physical selves in opposition to the distorted vision of others. Contributors attempt to  "recover" the black female body in two ways: they explore how dominant historical images have mediated black female identity, and they analyze how black women have resisted often demeaning popular cultural perceptions in favor of more diverse, subtle presentations of self.   The pieces in this book--all of them published here for the first time--address a wide range of topics, from antebellum American poetry to nineteenth-century African American actors, and twentieth-century pulp fiction.Recovering the Black Female Body recognizes the pressing need to highlight through scholarship the vibrant energy of African American women's attempts to wrest control of the physical and symbolic construction of their bodies away from the distortions of others.Contributors are Margaret Bass, Dorri Rabung Beam, Michael Bennett, Jacqueline E. Brady, Daphne A. Brooks, Vanessa D. Dickerson, Meredith Goldsmith, Yvette Louis, Ajuan Maria Mance, Noliwe Rooks, Mark Winokur, and Doris Witt. This book also contains a foreword by Carla L. Peterson and an afterword by Deborah E. McDowell. 
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Book details

List price: $29.95
Copyright year: 2000
Publisher: Rutgers University Press
Publication date: 12/1/2000
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 352
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.25" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.342
Language: English

Michael Bennett is private consultant with extensive experience as a principle investigator and project manager in a wide range of areas, including cognitive aids for analysis and counterdeception. Mr. Bennett conceived and managed an NRO Director's Innovation Study on this topic while working for High Performance Technologies, Inc. He holds a B.S. in electrical engineering from Purdue University and an M.B.A. from the University of Connecticut. Ed Waltz is technical director of intelligence systems at General Dynamics. He is also the author of Knowledge Management in the Intelligence Enterprise and Information Warfare: Principles and Operations, and the co-author of Multisensor Data Fusion. Mr. Waltz received his B.S. in electrical engineering from the Case Institute of Technology and M.S. in computer information and control engineering from the University of Michigan.

Vanessa D. Dickerson is a professor of English at DePauw University and the author of Victorian Ghosts in the Noontide: Women Writers and the Supernatural.

Dorri Beam is Assistant Professor of English at the University of California, Berkeley.

Foreword: Eccentric Bodies
Introductionp. 1
Frances Ellen Watkins Sings the Body Electricp. 19
"The Deeds Done in My Body": Black Feminist Theory, Performance, and the Truth about Adah Isaacs Menkenp. 41
The Flower of Black Female Sexuality in Pauline Hopkins's Winonap. 71
Shopping to Pass, Passing to Shop: Bodily Self-Fashioning in the Fiction of Nella Larsenp. 97
Re-locating the Black Subject: The Landscape of the Body in the Poems of Lucille Cliftonp. 123
Body Language: The Black Female Body and the Word in Suzan-Lori Parks's The Death of the Last Black Man in the Whole Entire Worldp. 141
Detecting Bodies: Barbara Neely's Domestic Sleuth and the Trope of the (In)visible Womanp. 165
Summoning SomeBody: The Flesh Made Word in Toni Morrison's Fictionp. 195
On Being a Fat Black Girl in a Fat-Hating Culturep. 219
Body and Soul: Identifying (with) the Black Lesbian Body in Cheryl Dunye's Watermelon Womanp. 231
Pumping Iron with Resistance: Carla Dunlap's Victorious Bodyp. 253
Wearing Your Race Wrong: Hair, Drama, and a Politics of Representation for African American Women at Play on a Battlefieldp. 279
Afterword: Recovery Missions: Imaging the Body Idealsp. 296
Notes on Contributorsp. 319
Indexp. 323
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.
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