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Black Women in White America: A Documentary History Paperback – November 17, 1992

ISBN-13: 978-0679743149 ISBN-10: 0679743146 Edition: Reprint

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Black Women in White America: A Documentary History + When and Where I Enter: The Impact of Black Women on Race and Sex in America + Women in the Civil Rights Movement: Trailblazers and Torchbearers, 1941-1965 (Blacks in the Diaspora)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 672 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage; Reprint edition (November 17, 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0679743146
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679743149
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #119,059 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Gerda Lerner has collected...material which can change images that whites have had of Blacks, and possibly even those which we, as Blacks, have of ourselves."--Maya Angelou

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By doc peterson VINE VOICE on September 3, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"Black Women in White America" is outstanding. Naturally the book provides some remarkable documents about slavery, but there is so much more covered in this fabulous book. The experiences of African - American women seeking to get (and give) an education, the experiences of African-American women as mere sex objects (and their stories of being objectified by men of all races), the crusade against lynching ... I was floored by the variety and amount of sources contained in this book. It is quite comprehensive in its breadth and scope.
As a historian and teacher, this is a marvelous resource. As a student and American, it is a moving true-life story that is regretfully often untold. Highly recommended reading.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Raquel B. on April 28, 2001
Format: Paperback
Compelling enough to keep me from ever thinking that I have it rough. As black women, we've endured sorrow and acheived greatness...all of which is found in this text. Black Women... gives an excellent account of the early history of African women in America.
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12 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Herbert L Calhoun on May 10, 2011
Format: Paperback
While this is a heroic effort on the part of the member of one American subgroup (most probably a Jewish woman) to write the history of a member of another subgroup (most definitely Black Women), it nevertheless succumbs to the fallacy that the eminent Historian E. H. Carr warned us about in his seminal book called "What is History."

The reader may recall that there Carr reminded us that historical facts are like the illusive fish we catch in the lake. Once we struggle to get them in the boat, we then take them home, cook them and serve them up in our own favorite style (interpretation). Consciously or unconsciously the interpretations we serve up invariably always reflect our own positions in social space and time; and thus form part of the broader question of what positions we hold in society ourselves. And although this author takes great pain and care to build an almost impregnable defense against failing to be objective, etc., Carr's admonition holds nevertheless.

However, one of the beauties of her attempt to build an impregnable rationale for having a Jewish Historian write the history of Black women, is that it causes the mind to focus on how so much of American history is written by non-members of the groups written about; that is by the ruling classes? It is certainly true as the author says that the emotional distance (of being an outsider) can sharpen ones focus and avoids the pitfalls of insider pandering, culling the facts only for the positive tidbits, etc. We certainly have seen enough of that in the way Black women report their own history. Yet, there is a deeper aspect of historical presentation that remains unaddressed here. It is the question of voice and perspective.
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10 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 12, 1999
Format: Paperback
This book does an excellent job of documenting the lives of African American women from slavery to the 20th century. It gives a portrayal of their strong abilities to move forward, their religious faith, and their degree of hope and self-pride in the meantime. I sincerely recommend this book to everyone in hopes that it will serve as a guide in their present lives.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Big Sistah Patty on January 16, 2010
Format: Paperback
Black Women in White America by Gerder Lerner ****

I almost decided not to read this book. I thought it was one of those feminist non-sense books that no respecting Black woman would waste her time reading such propaganda. However, once I began to read, I am glad I did. I give this book a 4 star.
Here is an excerpt that really touched me:

"White women have greater opportunities to display their ability because of the standing of both races, and due to the fact that black men are less appreciative of their own men than white men. The former will more readily sing the praises of white women than their own, yet who is more deserving of admiration than the black woman, she who has borne the rigors of slavery, the deprivations of consequence on a pauperized race, and the indignities heaped upon a weak and defenseless people. Yet she has suffered all with fortitude, and stands every ready to help in the onward March to freedom and power.

Be not discourage black women of the world, but push forward, regardless of the lack of appreciation shown you. A race must be saved, a country must be redeemed, and unless you strengthening the leader ship of vacillating Negro men, we will remain marking time until the yellow race gains leadership of the world, and we be forced to subserviency under them, or extermination.

We are tired of hearing Negro men say `There is a better day coming,' while they do nothing to usher in the day. We are becoming so impatient that we are getting in the front ranks, and serve notice on the world that we will brush aside the halting, cowardly Negro man, and with prayer on our lips and arms prepared for any fray, will press on and on until victory is ours.
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By five on July 9, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
beautiful but i haven't read it yet
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was an eye opener for me. I knew that black women were disrespected but not as much as I know now. This helped me to elaborate on how external and internalized sociocultural identities are formed.

Thank you
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