Embracing Sisterhood

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With this purported new 'era of high-profile, mega successful, black women who are changing the face of every major field worldwide' and growing socioeconomic diversity among black women as the backdrop, Embracing Sisterhood seeks to determine where contemporary black women's ideas of black womanhood and sisterhood merge with social class status to shape certain attachments and detachments among them. Similarities as well as variations in how black women of different social backgrounds perceive and live black womanhood are interpreted for a range of social contexts. This book confirms what many of today's African-American women and interested observers have known for some time: Conceptions and experience of black womanhood are quite diverse and appear to have grown more diverse over time. However, the potential for a pervasive and polarizing black 'step-sisterhood' is considerably undermined by the passion with which these women cling to the promises of cross-class gender/ethnic 'community' and of group determination. Embracing Sisterhood draws its analysis from in-depth interviews with eighty-eight contemporary black women aged 18 to 89 covering a variety of issues prompted by a survey questionnaire capturing various dimensions of gender/ethnic identity and consciousness.

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Editorial Reviews

Elizabeth Higginbotham
Embracing Sisterhood utilizes an exhaustive investigation of secondary material in combination with interviews with a diverse group of African American women to explore the impact of a social class schism where images of class discord can mask shared concerns. McDonald’s powerful study is important reading for people interested in how social class can shape attachments and detachments within racial ethnic communities.
Women's Review of Books, March/April 2009, Vol 26, No 2 - Audrey Elisa Kerr
This book is successful in that it is as 'real' and accessible as it is rigorous.
Marlese Durr
Embracing Sisterhood is a thought-provoking examination of Black women’s intersecting challenges, tensions, and issues of class in the 21st century. With eloquently simple yet subtlety provocative sophistication, McDonald captures the continuing trials and tribulations for these women in a changing post Civil Rights Era where race is not their only struggle, but part of the nexus of questions and answers associated with gender/ethnic identity consciousness and class.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780742545748
  • Publisher: The Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group Inc
  • Publication date: 9/28/2006
  • Pages: 228
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 0.69 (d)

Meet the Author

Katrina Bell McDonald is associate dean of multicultural affairs and associate professor of sociology at Johns Hopkins University.

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Introduction: Metaphorically Speaking Chapter 2 The Legacy of Black Sisterhood: Deep Collective Roots Chapter 3 The Contemporary Currency of Black Sisterhood Chapter 4 "Struggle" as a Marker of Authentic Black Womanhood Chapter 5 Discord in the Sisterhood: Classed Patterns of Sentiment and Experience Chapter 6 Embracing Oprah Winfrey Chapter 7 Conclusion: Re-Stimulating the Black Sisterhood

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