As a result of the Harlem Renaissance, Afro-American genre came up as a literary genre as ‘the spring of Afro-American voice’. They realized that their Utopian ideals would not be achieved without paying attention to the relationships between Black men and women. Alice Walker, a feminist writer also belongs to the same Black community and has undergone this class, social racism and sexual oppression and knows well the pain of the Black women. Through her writings and characters, she has portrayed the marginalized life of the Black women and revealed the typical Afro-American society. Her writings brought an awareness of the system of violent racism of the South and the effects of it on the Black.
The biggest contribution to the African-American literature rests in that the novel speaks openly about the racist nature of white mass culture and explores the ways in which class division based on skin color affects black girls’ growing-up and their personality-forming. One of the famous novel writer Toni Morrison, the novel The Bluest Eye (1970) is the first novel written by Toni Morrison, an African-American writer who has become one of the top black female writers in the United States. The Bluest Eye can be characterized as addressing the timeless problem of white racial dominance in the U.S.A. and pointing to the impact it has on the life of a black girl growing up in the 1930s. The main constituent parts of black women’s self-esteem
She experienced racial prejudices and discrimination in Arkansas. She is known as the voice to the voiceless; her works have been viewed as production of Black culture. Angelou evokes a social change in the minds of the people through resistance. In a concise manner she explores themes such as gender, race and resistance in her works. The nature of Black resistance in her writings are mainly in two forms: artfulness resistance and active protest against racism and sexism.
Literature in general is a reflection of the life of the people, individuals, communities and societies. African American writers have engaged in a creative literary writing and explore identity, fragmentation, hardships and sufferings of the African descents in America. The history of African-Americans has been a paradox of incredible triumph in the face of tremendous human tragedy. The present study will examine the black experience in white America in late 19th century as well as through the twentieth century. In the light of that, this thesis is to provide an understanding of the role of black people have played in the history of the American nation and an assessment of why they were, until the relatively recent past, excluded from the
After years of suffering from persecution, discrimination, and institutionalized racism due to Jim Crow laws, black people all around America engaged in a social and cultural movement entitled ‘The Harlem Renaissance.’ Author Zora Neale Hurston wrote the novel Their Eyes Were Watching God, about the Harlem Renaissance while promoting feminist ideas. Although the Harlem Renaissance was a social and cultural movement, the Harlem Renaissance still promoted traditional gender roles for women, which is reflected by Nanny’s wishes for Janie and departs with Janie’s want of freedom. In the Harlem Renaissance, women were not as respected as men, especially in the arts. Looking in retrospect, many critics highly value women of color’s writing during the Harlem Renaissance because most modern critics are not phased by race or sex. Cheryl A.
By using quotes from Woolf, Alice Walker is able to contrast her own experiences, and those of other black women, with Virginia Woolf’s ideas about feminism. Virginia Woolf was British and white and not poor; she had a prominent voice among peers and was held in high regard. Walker takes Woolf’s quotes and inserts blackness into them. Not only does she add black perspective into the quotes, but she also adds the horror of being black into them. She states, “Any woman born with a great gift in the sixteenth century [insert ‘eighteenth century’ insert ‘black woman’ insert ‘born or made a slave’]” (Walker 166).
This successful female author wrote a masterful poem during one of the most brutal times to be a black woman. The poem Still I Rise is a great example of how women are strong and beautiful beings who deserve the same rights as those who identify another race or gender. In a thorough critique of Maya Angelou’s powerful poem Still
Both of them have many components that evaluate the different aspects of racism and sexism. Although, these concepts are developed differently, they both definitely give the reader something to think about in terms of racism and sexism. Since Alice Walker is an African American woman herself, she must relate to the stories she writes, as most of the characters she writes about are African American as well, and are facing some kind of problem. Also in both stories, the characters have a clash between themselves and the society. In Everyday Use, all the characters, the narrator, Dee and Maggie, in some way clash with their society.
Among its prominent aspects, African postcolonial literature discussed the traditional rituals and cultures, community life, religious beliefs of the people and the destruction of all of this with the coming of the colonizers. What is rather striking in the literature from across Africa is the status and treatment of women. As literature is often highly representative of the society, women representations in African works raise a lot of questions. This paper then aims to highlight the lives of women in such fictitious works, as well as in the African reality. The treatment and representation of women in African narratives has always posed a large number of debatable questions.