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The Revelations of Asher

Toward Supreme Love in Self – (This Is an Endarkened, Feminist, New Literacies Event)


Jeanine M. Staples

The Revelations of Asher: Toward Supreme Love in Self is an endarkened, feminist, new literacies event. It critically and creatively explores Black women’s terror in love. With poetry, prose, and analytic memos, Jeanine Staples shows how a group of Black women’s talk and writings about relationships revealed epistemological and ontological revelations, after 9/11. These revelations are presented in the context of a third wave new literacies framework. They are voiced and storied dynamically by the women’s seven fragmented selves. Through the selves, we learn the five ways the women lived as lovers: Main Chick, Side Chick, Bonnie, Bitch, and Victim. As an alternative-response to these identities in love, the author presents a new way. She introduces the Supreme Lover Identity and illuminates its integral connection to social and emotional justice for and through Black women’s wisdom.
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Honoring the voices of selves and the necessity of a responsive reading/writing research pedagogy (Jeanine speaks)


Honoring the voices of selves and the necessity of a responsive reading/writing research pedagogy

Asher’s Two truths in being and knowledge served as a tipping point for the group. Her ability to articulate, as our representative teacherly self, this interpersonal dichotomy was significant. With regard to her poetic articulation of these “truths,” Asher pointed to several ways other fragmentations used language to complement and complicate her perspective, as it related to romantic love. Because Asher’s “truths” were a coalesced literacy event, language was at issue. Kamler’s question about positioning was useful. She asks, “How do you position language? And, how do you extract cultural texts from under the stubborn lamination of the personal story?” (Kamler, 2001, p. xi). These questions serve as pedagogical inspirations among some teachers of reading and writing, particularly those who serve individuals who are considered historically marginalized in sociocultural spaces and relationships. They also point to the idea that cultural texts (containing epistemologies and ontologies) are couched within, under, and sometimes against Black women’s stories (although, these undercurrents may not often be acknowledged).

Her questions speak to me because they can produce responses that further align pedagogy and research in the service of underserved/under-represented people, like Black women. In addition, they speak to an aspect of positionality—ways of developing vantage points for and about language—so that it becomes a tool for individual and ← 147 | 148 → collective voices, experiences, perspectives, and positions (Harré & Moghaddam, 2003). This happens in addition to...

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