Bodies That Work
African American Women’s Corporeal Activism in Progressive America
Table Of Contents
- About the author
- About the book
- This eBook can be cited
- List of Figures
- Author’s Note
- 1 The Grassroots Network of African American Women: Madam C. J. Walker’s Hair Care Empire
- Walker’s Transatlantic Vision of Hair Culture
- Hair Care Tailored to Black Women’s Minds and Bodies
- Advertisements Promising Beauty and Prosperity
- Agents in Walker’s Grassroots Network
- 2 Vocal Cords Vibrating against Black Codes: The Socio-Musical Activism of E. Azalia Hackley
- Spirituals as Religiously Inspired Folk Songs
- Lost Tongues and Coded Songs
- Spirituals in Progressive America
- Hackley’s Spiritual Mobilization
- 3 Mutilated Womb, Violated Motherhood: Mary Turner and Meta Warrick Fuller’s Sculptural Protest
- The Doom of the Womb in American Slavery
- Slave Mothers’ Resilience against White Patriarchy
- Maternalism and Anti-Lynching in Progressive America
- Mary Turner and the Maternal Protest in Art
- 4 Performing Savagery and Civility: The Subversive Nudity of Josephine Baker
- Quasi-Slavery in Progressive America
- American and French Attitudes toward Female Nudity
- Baker’s (De)Colonizing Body in French Cinema
- Baker’s Nudity for the American Body Politic
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Names: Miyatsu, Tami (Tamiko), author.
Title: Bodies that work: African American women’s corporeal activism
in Progressive America / Tami Miyatsu
Description: New York: Peter Lang, 2020.
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Identifiers: LCCN 2019031130 | ISBN 978-1-4331-6723-2 (hardback: alk. paper)
ISBN 978-1-4331-6724-9 (ebook pdf )
ISBN 978-1-4331-6725-6 (epub) | ISBN 978-1-4331-6726-3 (mobi)
Subjects: LCSH: Walker, C. J., Madam, 1867–1919. | Hackley, E. Azalia (Emma
Azalia), 1867–1922. | Fuller, Meta Warrick, 1877–1968. | Baker,
Josephine, 1906–1975. | African American women—Race identity. | African
American women—Social conditions. | Human body—Social aspects—United
States—History. | Progressivism (United States politics) | United
Classification: LCC E185.625 .M59 | DDC 305.48/896073—dc23
LC record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2019031130
Bibliographic information published by Die Deutsche Nationalbibliothek.
Die Deutsche Nationalbibliothek lists this publication in the “Deutsche
Nationalbibliografie”; detailed bibliographic data are available
on the Internet at http://dnb.d-nb.de/.
© 2019 Peter Lang Publishing, Inc., New York
29 Broadway, 18th floor, New York, NY 10006
All rights reserved.
Reprint or reproduction, even partially, in all forms such as microfilm,
xerography, microfiche, microcard, and offset strictly prohibited.
About the author
Tami Miyatsu is a professor of American literature at Kansai Gaidai University, Japan. She earned a PhD in literature from the University of Tsukuba. She has received MEXT/ JSPS KAKENHI (Grants-in-Aid for Scientifi c Research) for studies on women’s slave narratives and the black women’s club movement.
About the book
Bodies That Work describes the redefinition of the invisible, fragmented, and commodified African American female body. In Progressive America, black women began to use their bodies in new ways and ventured into professions in which they had typically not been represented. They were bodies that worked—that labored, functioned, and achieved in collective empowerment and that overcame racial, ethnic, and class divides and grappled with the ideas and values of political, financial, and intellectual leadership, thereby dispelling the ingrained stereotypes of womanhood associated with slavery. Based on archival materials and historical documents, Bodies That Work examines four women who reinterpreted and reorganized the historically divided black female body and positioned it within the body politic: Sarah Breedlove Walker, or Madam C.J. Walker (1867–1919), an entrepreneur; Emma Azalia Hackley (1867–1922), an opera singer; Meta Warrick Fuller (1877–1968), a sculptor; and Josephine Baker (1906–1975), an international performer. Each reshaped a different part of the female body: the hair (Walker), the womb (Fuller), the vocal cords (Hackley), and the torso (Baker), all of which had been denigrated during slavery and which continued to be devalued by white patriarchy in their time. Alleviating racial and gender prejudices through their work, these women provided alternative images of black womanhood. The book’s focus on individual body parts inspires new insights within race and gender studies by visualizing the processes by which women lost/gained autonomy, aspiration, and leadership and demonstrating how the black female body was made (in)visible in the body politic.
This eBook can be cited
This edition of the eBook can be cited. To enable this we have marked the start and end of a page. In cases where a word straddles a page break, the marker is placed inside the word at exactly the same position as in the physical book. This means that occasionally a word might be bifurcated by this marker.
Figure 1.2. “A Million Eyes Turned Upon It Daily: Madam C. J. Walker’s Wonderful Hair Grower” (advertisement). Crisis 18, no. 6 (1919): 323. https://www.marxists.org/history/usa/workers/civil-rights/crisis/1000-crisis-v18n06-w108.pdf (accessed May 31, 2019).
Figure 2.1. “Coming to Pittsburgh: Madame E. Azalia Hackley, soprano; Retiring Song Recital and Demonstration on Voice Culture” (advertisement). Pittsburgh Courier (Pittsburgh, PA), June 14, 1912. https://www.newspapers.com/image/33456657/ (accessed May 24, 2019).←ix | x→
Figure 2.2. “Madam E. Azalia Hackley: The Greatest Queen of Song, of the Afro-American Race, Who Has Won Fame Throughout Europe and America.” Broad Ax (Salt Lake, UT), December 31, 1910. Chronicling America, Library of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84024055/1910-12-31/ed-1/seq-5/ (accessed May 24, 2019).
- XVI, 188
- ISBN (PDF)
- ISBN (ePUB)
- ISBN (MOBI)
- ISBN (Hardcover)
- Publication date
- 2020 (April)
- New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Oxford, Wien, 2020. XVI, 188 pp., 10 b/w ill.