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Black Woman Redefined: Dispelling Myths and Discovering Fulfillment in the Age of Michelle Obama Hardcover – May 31, 2011

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Black Woman Redefined: Dispelling Myths and Discovering Fulfillment in the Age of Michelle Obama + The Little Black Book of Success: Laws of Leadership for Black Women + Successful Women Think Differently: 9 Habits to Make You Happier, Healthier, and More Resilient
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 260 pages
  • Publisher: BenBella Books (May 31, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1935618946
  • ISBN-13: 978-1935618942
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.2 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #829,429 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"More than anything else, Nelson's work is a how-to book, a feel-good tome that offers black women prescriptions for personal and professional success that empower them without tearing down someone else."
DeWayne Wickham, USA TODAY columnist

"Ardent, inspirational, insightful, and redemptive."
Kam Williams

“On the page as she does on television, Sophia A. Nelson uses bold insights and no-nonsense observations to cut through the myths and misperceptions about what it means to be a black woman today. But this isn’t just a book for black women. It speaks to everyone who cares about equality and opportunity, and especially to women, of every color, who are looking for a fresh perspective on everything from careers to dating to faith. Whether you agree or disagree with
her, you’ll find it hard to put this book down.”
Chris Jansing, Emmy-Award winning anchor and host of MSNBC’s Jansing & Co

“The enduring legacy of any great work is that it touches our souls and causes us to reflect inward. It calls us to open our eyes, step out of the shadows of our pain, and to live life forward. Black Woman Redefined does that for us all. This brilliant, powerful book is not just about and for black women—it invites the entire American family to see black women more fully as people. Sophia A. Nelson is one of the most gifted analysts and writers of our time. She effectively rejects the centuries-old myth that black women’s lives aren’t worth discussing. The often painful stories shared in this book are still being told because they’re still being lived. In the end, this book is a much-needed generational battle cry for recognition, release, and healing.”
Michael Eric Dyson, Professor at Georgetown University, radio host of the Michael Eric Dyson Show, and best-selling author of Why I Love Black Women

“Sophia Nelson, with her keen intellect, detailed research, and never before written insights, encourages all women, especially our strong and diverse black sisters to achieve new and unprecedented heights.”
Armstrong Williams, Washington Times columnist, author, and nationally syndicated TV and radio host

“In her first book, Sophia A. Nelson gives us all great insight and information on some of the serious issues facing today’s African American women. This book is bound to generate discussion across the social and political spectrum for years to come.”
Sean Hannity, best-selling author, radio show host, and host of FOX News’ top-rated political program Hannity

“Each generation has a voice that is lifted at just the right time to grab hold of us and shake us from our slumber. Sophia A. Nelson calls on black women to rethink the way things are and change them. She has tapped into the pain and silence of her generation of ‘sisters,’ and approaches this important subject matter in a way that is compassionate and profound. Sophia carefully dissects the continuing, yet often invisible, struggle of modern day black women when
it comes to our image, the perceptions that others have of us, and that we have of ourselves.”
Terrie M. Williams, author, Black Pain: It Just Looks Like We’re Not Hurting

“Nelson uncovers the issues that are often hidden beneath the surface of black women’s pain, and demonstrates to all how to live well and emerge victorious on the other side.”
Dr. Melody T. McCloud, OB/GYN- columnist Psychology Today and author of Living Well, Despite Catchin’ Hell: The Black Woman’s Guide to Health, Sex, and Happiness

“Think ‘redefinition.’ Sophia A. Nelson’s new book Black Woman Redefined cuts through a mountain of myths, stereotypes, and negative thinking. The result is a treasure chest of new information, valuable insights, and inspiring advice for African American women—and for us, the men who love them!”
Clarence Page, Pulitzer Prize-winning syndicated columnist for the Chicago Tribune

“At a moment of profound economic and cultural change for America, Black Woman Redefined comes along at the perfect time. While Sophia A. Nelson knows her target audience, she’s also aware of the broader, diverse world. With solid research and a smooth inclusive voice, Nelson has produced a book that that holds lessons for many.”
Robert A. George, New York Post

Black Woman Redefined is a book that has been greatly anticipated because it was penned by a woman who for years has displayed refreshing analytical and political savvy first as an attorney on Capitol Hill, then as a lobbyist, and finally as a national TV commentator and columnist. This book encourages black women to do what Sophia A. Nelson has exhibited to us all for years: how to be a successful sister, wrapped with old-fashioned charm, endless grace, an unflinching determination, and a passion for serving others seldom seen in our modern times.”
Hamil Harris, Washington Post, Emmy-Award winning videographer

“The research and insight in this book lend to a much-needed discussion of just how far African American women have come and how far they have to go.”
Mika Brzezinski, co-host of MSNBC’s Morning Joe and author of Knowing Your Value

Black Woman Redefined offers an urgent message that readers need to hear now: Put yourself first. The stories Sophia A. Nelson offers, coupled with thorough research and data, will make this read a game changer. Many conversations will begin about this book over many, many years and that’s a good thing.”
Essence magazine

About the Author

Sophia A. Nelson is the chairman and founder of iask, Inc. (aka "I Am My Sister's Keeper") an international organization dedicated to the service, self, and success of professional black women. She is a popular blogger and much sought-after national columnist, speaker, and political/social commentator for media outlets such as CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, NPR, The Huffington Post, BET, and BBC. Her opinion pieces have appeared in "The Washington Post, The Washington Times, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Chicago Sun Times, USA TODAY, Essence, " and "National Law Journal/LegalTimes."

More About the Author

Sophia A. Nelson is an award-winning author and award winning journalist. She is also a highly sought-after corporate leadership trainer and motivational speaker. Nelson has a national platform that is making strides to help women lead more fulfilling and powerful lives in and out of the workplace.

Nelson's personal and professional journey is the basis for her popular columns, writings, events, corporate workshops and TV appearances. A former Congressional Committee Counsel, Lobbyist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and a senior attorney with the international powerhouse law firm of Holland & Knight, LLP. Nelson left the practice of law in 2008 to pursue her life-long goal of becoming a journalist and TV commentator during the historic 2008 Presidential campaign.

She became an MSNBC political analyst, and a White House Correspondent for JET Magazine after the election. She also decided to write her first non-fiction book, "Black Women Redefined: Dispelling Myths and Discovering Fulfillment in the Age of Michelle Obama" to tackle the issue of negative stereotypes around African American women. The book went on to win a 2011 Best Non-Fiction Book Award. A Pulitzer nomination in Letters. And the 2012 Corporate Champion of Diversity Award. Black Woman Redefined sold over 50,000 copies in print and electronic formats. It is still a top-selling book three years since its publication.

Nelson presently runs SAN Enterprises, LLC. A successful Virginia based national public affairs consulting firm. She freelances for The Huffington Post Healthy Living and Women sections as well as Newsweek Daily Beast, Women in the World and appears regularly on MSNBC as a contributor to the She has appeared on numerous other networks such as the BBC, CNN, FOX, C-Span, NBC the Today Show, ABC Nightly News with Diane Sawyer, and more as a political & cultural expert, thought leader, and attorney, covering many topics of national and global interest.

Finally, she is a much sought after motivational speaker, life-style expert and leadership trainer in the Fortune 500, industry and universities. She has contributed to USA Today, Essence Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and The Washington Post. Her 2nd book The Woman Code: 20 Powerful Keys to Unlock Your Life (Revell), is due out in stores world-wide October 2014.

Customer Reviews

Thank you Ms. Nelson--you are a changing the game for us all!
I implore every Black woman to purchase this book and experience the essence of redefining who and what we are as Black women.
Cindy Hooper
I was very impressed by the amount of research that went into this book.
Michelle Hargrove

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

41 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Alison Fleischer on May 21, 2011
Format: Hardcover
From a woman's perspective and myself being a novice writer, I was astounded by Sophia Nelson's depth of research and the thoughtful way in which she approached her subject. I really enjoyed the level to which she studied this subject and provided me, as the reader, with so much background and context for her commentary. The idea of stereotypes seems to constantly pervade our society, including many that women and black women fall victim to themselves. While I'm not a black woman, I did feel drawn into this book and saw many behaviors, attitudes, feelings, and perspectives that I think any woman of any race or ethnicity could instantly relate to. I felt like she was talking to me and her audience because the book read like a conversation despite being so researched and educational. It gave me a renewed sense of respect for those women out there who are standing up and illustrating just how much everyone - no matter their gender or their race - can contribute. I admired the way in which Sophia Nelson touched on some very sensitive subjects and was both forthright and poignant in her delivery. The fact that she included contributions from many well-known people added to the flavor of the book and complimented her own messages. This is an empowering read that will touch so many people, change minds, and create positive action.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By D. Pitts on May 23, 2011
Format: Hardcover
The idea of redefining yourselves is at the heart of Sophia Nelson's book and is a wonderful read for any black woman - young or old, single or married, mother or aunt. My favorite aspect of the book was the positive messages and insistence that we move beyond anger, bitterness, and hatred toward love and purpose. Her messages about how redefining the black woman is a team effort where we all need to get on board, get over the drama, and work together is truly needed. I think we can only do what Sophia Nelson advises if we start with ourselves and those around us. This is a great gift for any woman in your life!
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Elliot James on May 18, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought the book because the title sounded interesting and the reviews were so complimentary. I'm about half way through the book and there's some good and bad and I'm leaning towards bad. But I'll start with the good. Everywoman character the book seems to be written for was so close to my personal experience it was scary. I appreciated that. It was nice to understand that there are women out there going through what I've been through and am still going through. I also appreciated the chapter/discussion on having an appreciation of black history and understanding where we have come from without shame. She was really accurate their and it prompted me, along with some other urgings, to expand my knowledge on black history outside of what I learned in a couple courses in college. I wish that conversation, regarding the need for black history to young and older black people, could be expanded. It really is important.

The bad, she does disclose her research methods aren't exactly scientific, but given that I have done some study in statistics and have some knowledge of how good research is conducted, I question the way she collected her data. In some instances, it's more or less having had conversations with people that support her position on something so she could support her position or in some cases just drawing conclusions based on what she thinks should be cause of why data went one way or the other. That also leads into her just going into long sequences about what she thinks and feels women should do/feel, etc. At some points it like a long dissertation. My biggest issue with the book so far is about at third of the way into the book and now through the middle she's going through the "black women should . . . " section.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Claire on May 20, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I was able to read an early copy of this book, and I just received my final copy over the weekend. The presentation from the cover to the back is stunning. The colors of purple and black radiate the proud history and yet gentle souls of black women. The book itself is in a word: Powerful. Ms. Nelson (she says she is 44--I don't believe her) is a gifted writer and a phenomenal conversationalist. I did not feel like I was reading a research book at all. I felt like she was in my living room sitting with a glass of wine or a cup of tea. TI am also a woman from Europe, and I can tell you this book is as chapter 3 discusses a "game changer"--Nelson opens black women up in a whole new way to themselves and to the world. I have also seen a lot of media around this book--from MSNBC to Essence, to USA TODAY and Tom Joyner Morning show. The review quotes on the jacket and in the book are also surprising--how does one get Michael Eric Dyson and Sean Hannity to like the same book?? Really. Wow! This is a must read book for all black women, all women, and all Americans.

Thank you Ms. Nelson--you are a changing the game for us all!
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A. Davis on May 13, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Black Woman Redefined opens up with a heart warming letter to the first lady Michelle Obama. What is interesting about it is the book goes on to back up the nice things said about Michelle Obama with actual data supporting that she is shifting the perception of black women in mainstream America.

This is a book that will be talked about for many years to come because it does such a great job challenging black women and all of us about our behavior, perceptions, and looking at success being about more than their accomplishments.

Sophia doesn't talk down to the audience for this book, she has a peer-to-peer conversation throughout which makes it that much more unique. Good reading for all!
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