Father Songs

Father Songs

by Gloria Jean Wade-Gayles, Gloria Wade-Gayles
     
 

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The realities of black fatherhood in this country have long been obscured by the stereotypes that abound in the media and political rhetoric. Here contributors write about real fathers dependable, sometimes enraged or wounded, but nevertheless heroic. Despite their enormously diverse experiences, each writer affirms the central role that their relationship with their

Overview

The realities of black fatherhood in this country have long been obscured by the stereotypes that abound in the media and political rhetoric. Here contributors write about real fathers dependable, sometimes enraged or wounded, but nevertheless heroic. Despite their enormously diverse experiences, each writer affirms the central role that their relationship with their father has played in their lives.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
While this book is being published on Father's Day, it seems less a gift for Dad than a chance for the kids to hash out the pride and pain associated with the varieties of black fatherhood. This stimulating collection opens with anguish: the first section concerns fathers who were only intermittently present at best. The second section delves deeper into painful memories, as, for example, Mary Helen Washington tries to understand what made her father so hateful. A third section offers heartening examples, such as Anthony Walton's portrait of a father defined by "fidelity, simplicity, and frugality." A selection of farewells to fathers contains essays expressing tenderness and frustration; a final section focuses on the gifts fathers pass on. Because most of the fathers portrayed here grew up in an older America, racial dignity in the face of bigotry is an important facet of their identity. Some essays are reprints; contributors include well-known writers John Edgar Wideman and Pearl Cleage and others less known. Wade-Gayles teaches English and women's studies at Spelman College in Georgia. (June)
Library Journal
In this collection of true stories, famous and not-so-famous black men and women reveal their most intimate secrets about their fathers. They speak of fathers who abandoned them and of those who abused their mothers, as well as of their hatred for them. They write letters and poetry to these men relaying their feelings of sorrow, as well as their feelings of joy. From Langston Hughes to Alice Walker, editor Wade-Gayles (Rooted Against the Wind, LJ 10/15/96) has gathered together some of the best literary minds for this anthology to begin a dialog on black fatherhood that, she says, comes not from "sociological studies and statistics, but rather from memory." She includes stories of adoptees in search of their birth parents, painful reunions, and memories of fathers who've passed on. While not all reminiscences are exceptional, they still deserve a respectable place on most library shelves.Ann Burns, "Library Journal"

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780807062159
Publisher:
Beacon
Publication date:
06/01/1998
Pages:
352
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.99(h) x 0.97(d)

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