Telling Histories: Black Women Historians in the Ivory Tower

Telling Histories: Black Women Historians in the Ivory Tower

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by Deborah Gray White
     
 

The field of black women's history gained recognition as a legitimate field of study only late in the twentieth century. Collecting stories that are both deeply personal and powerfully political, Telling Histories compiles seventeen personal narratives by leading black women historians at various stages in their careers. Their essays illuminate how--first asSee more details below

Overview

The field of black women's history gained recognition as a legitimate field of study only late in the twentieth century. Collecting stories that are both deeply personal and powerfully political, Telling Histories compiles seventeen personal narratives by leading black women historians at various stages in their careers. Their essays illuminate how--first as graduate students and then as professional historians--they entered and navigated the realm of higher education, a world concerned with and dominated by whites and men. In distinct voices and from different vantage points, the personal histories revealed here also tell the story of the struggle to establish a new scholarly field.

Black women, alleged by affirmative-action supporters and opponents to be "twofers," recount how they have confronted racism, sexism, and homophobia on college campuses. They explore how the personal and the political intersect in historical research and writing and in the academy. Organized by the years the contributors earned their Ph.D.'s, these essays follow the black women who entered the field of history during and after the civil rights and black power movements, endured the turbulent 1970s, and opened up the field of black women's history in the 1980s. By comparing the experiences of older and younger generations, this collection makes visible the benefits and drawbacks of the institutionalization of African American and African American women's history. Telling Histories captures the voices of these pioneers, intimately and publicly.

Contributors:
Elsa Barkley Brown, University of Maryland
Mia Bay, Rutgers University
Leslie Brown, Washington University in St. Louis
Crystal N. Feimster, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Sharon Harley, University of Maryland
Wanda A. Hendricks, University of South Carolina
Darlene Clark Hine, Northwestern University
Chana Kai Lee, University of Georgia
Jennifer L. Morgan, New York University
Nell Irvin Painter, Newark, New Jersey
Merline Pitre, Texas Southern University
Barbara Ransby, University of Illinois at Chicago
Julie Saville, University of Chicago
Brenda Elaine Stevenson, University of California, Los Angeles
Ula Taylor, University of California, Berkeley
Rosalyn Terborg-Penn, Morgan State University
Deborah Gray White, Rutgers University

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Engagingly written . . . should appeal to multiple audiences. . . . The book is not only valuable for graduate students but is also a significant contribution to the field and should facilitate bringing down barriers, both within and outside the academy, that constrain the professorial ranks, stifle voices, and preclude diverse academicians and scholars from writing and teaching without restraint.--H-Net Reviews

These narratives offer personal perspectives on the world of black women in the ebony and ivory towers. . . . One can appreciate the honest and forthrightness of many of the narratives.--Journal of African American History

In Telling Histories: Black Women Historians in the Ivory Tower, 17 professors prove by their collective experiences that they have built their own community of support.--A Nota Bene selection of The Chronicle of Higher Education

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780807832011
Publisher:
The University of North Carolina Press
Publication date:
05/01/2008
Series:
Gender and American Culture Series
Edition description:
1
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.00(d)

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
This is a compelling collection of essays by a distinguished group of women who have made history in a double sense--through both their lives and their writings. More than merely autobiography, this volume illuminates the manifold ways that legacies of slavery and Jim Crow have shaped knowledge production as well as the producers of knowledge. Together, these essays document the emergence of black women's voices in powerful ways that inform, instruct, and inspire. This book will change lives--and even the writing of history.--Eileen Boris, University of California, Santa Barbara

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