Black Women, Identity, and Cultural Theory: (Un)Becoming the Subject

Black Women, Identity, and Cultural Theory: (Un)Becoming the Subject

by Kevin Quashie
     
 

ISBN-10: 0813533678

ISBN-13: 9780813533674

Pub. Date: 12/28/2003

Publisher: Rutgers University Press

 In Black Women, Identity, and Cultural Theory, Kevin Everod Quashie explores the metaphor of the “girlfriend” as a new way of understanding three central concepts of cultural studies: self, memory, and language. He considers how the work of writers such as Toni Morrison, Ama Ata Aidoo, Dionne Brand, photographer Lorna Simpson, and many

Overview

 In Black Women, Identity, and Cultural Theory, Kevin Everod Quashie explores the metaphor of the “girlfriend” as a new way of understanding three central concepts of cultural studies: self, memory, and language. He considers how the work of writers such as Toni Morrison, Ama Ata Aidoo, Dionne Brand, photographer Lorna Simpson, and many others, inform debates over the concept of identity. Quashie argues that these authors and artists replace the notion of a stable, singular identity with the concept of the self developing in a process both communal and perpetually fluid, a relationship that functions in much the same way that an adult woman negotiates with her girlfriend(s). He suggests that memory itself is corporeal, a literal body that is crucial to the process of becoming. Quashie also explores the problem language poses for the black woman artist and her commitment to a mastery that neither colonizes nor excludes.

The analysis throughout interacts with schools of thought such as psychoanalysis, postmodernism, and post-colonialism, but ultimately moves beyond these to propose a new cultural aesthetic, one that ultimately aims to center black women and their philosophies.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780813533674
Publisher:
Rutgers University Press
Publication date:
12/28/2003
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
246
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsix
Introduction: What Becomes ...1
Chapter 1The Other Dancer as Self: Notes on Girlfriend Selfhood15
Chapter 2Self(full)ness and the Politics of Community42
Chapter 3Liminality and Selfhood: Toward Being Enough78
Chapter 4An Indisputable Memory of Blackness98
Chapter 5The Practice of a Memory Body111
Chapter 6Toward a Language Aesthetic129
Chapter 7My Own, Language148
Conclusion ... What Is Undone173
Notes179
Works Cited207
Index221

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