By Duchess Harris (auth.)
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For Black men, stereotypes such as “coons” and “Toms” were prevalent and were perpetuated through movies and books. Black men were either unthreatening fools who missed the good old days of slavery or were hyper-threatening, uncontrollable aggressors who had to be curbed, lest they unleash social unrest and disorder. 38 BLACK FEMINIST POLITICS—KENNEDY TO CLINTON For Black women, similar dichotomous stereotypes existed with the Mammy and Jezebel images. When Wallace wrote her book, she criticized Black men for starting to internalize and believe in the stereotypes of Black women as Jezebel and Sapphire.
A HISTORY OF BLACK AMERICAN FEMINISM 25 Combahee’s Community Activism: Taking Feminism beyond the Theoretical All of the Combahee women were involved in other Civil Rights and women’s issues groups and there was a lot of interconnection among the groups and their issues. The women of Combahee were also fully committed to redefining feminism, taking feminist ideas beyond the theoretical and applying them to consistent action. When the founders first got together in the Combahee River Collective, there was no battered women’s shelter in Boston or the surrounding area.
Her father got to do everything first; her mother was just kind of waiting on him hand and foot. She said to herself that she was not going to let any man boss her around, which is completely counter to traditional Japanese culture. Somehow she met my father and one of the things that she was struck by was these American men would say “ladies first” and she thought it was wonderful, but of course she didn’t understand the sexist underlying stuff. She thought America must be a wonderful place if ladies get to go first.
Black Feminist Politics from Kennedy to Clinton by Duchess Harris (auth.)
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