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4.4 out of 5 stars
Bone Black: Memories of Girlhood
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on April 2, 1998
Format: Paperback
I just finished bell hooks' Bone Black and I had to write something to someone. I have been reading autobiographies for a thesis for the past few months and have found a wealth of styles. None, however, can compare to the complex simplicity of Ms. hooks. Her language is a melding of childhood innocence and adult knowledge. For example, when she says "Only grown-ups think that the things children say come our of nowhere. We know they come from the deepest parts of ourselves" (24), she is able to consider both perspectives because she has lived both. It is touching that she chooses to identify with the children. Ms. hooks allows the reader, though her narritive switches, to follow her search for a home. Through personal and impersonal (first vs. third person) accounts, we come to symapthize with her exile from her family. In the end, when she notes that she "belong[s] in this place of words. This is my home" (183), the reader can only sigh in agreement. Her words are her home, both in Bone Black and later feminist theory. The magic is in the words.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on May 15, 1998
Format: Hardcover
...
It's always a fascinating pleasure to see behind the lives of such brilliantly outspoken and dedicated social critics like bell hooks.
Although the story and it's details always belong to the author's experience, a memoire lends itself to the reader's unique perception. This book brought me back to childhood and slammed my heart against words for feelings I'd never been able to identify while growing through my own "girlhood". Some of the human universe's deepest and most heartfelt emotions of family, sexuality, feminine and personal identity, jealousy, rage, contempt, and spirituality are permitted to ooze from the pages of this multi-faceted story.
A wonderful trip through time for all of us who claw scratching through every day of our dreams and our lives.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
bell hooks is known for her many books on the politics of art and culture. This addition is more about the processing of becoming a mature thoughtful writer. Her road was a painful one but all that she experienced fortified her work process and personality. There is some beautiful visual writing and depth in bell hooks' bone black.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
At first, I found the uniformly sized (3-page) chunks of invoking with stripped-down sentences in bell hook's Bone Black: Memories of Girlhood somewhat affectless and very structurally arbitrary. Hemingway sprang to mind, but then I thought of Stein's syntax (and the role she claimed in forming Hemingway's style). Hooks's repetitions are more subtle, and perhaps her prose is, too, because eventually I found it compelling. The pain of being different while young and vulnerable came through the chilly prose.
What she describes of female complicity in male privilege is particularly frightening and compelling. She experienced little female solidarity, being rejected by her five sisters and never able to please her mother (who agreed with her father that her spirit needed to be broken).
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on January 27, 2001
Format: Paperback
I couldn't stop turning the pages of this brutally honest tale of a black, southern, woman who grows up knowing that she is diffrent. And therefore, her life will be diffrent.
This little book gives an intimate look, at the writer some say is the most prolific writer on race, gender and class. hooks, uses words extremely cautiously whick makes this piece on you simply can't put down.
Eat this book!
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Format: Paperback
I really enjoyed this book. While some were put of by the simplicity..I welcomed it!
It was memories of girlhood, written at times by that little girl who in fact was wise beyond her years. The stories are interesting and a few of them remind me of my own childhood. At times, I felt Ms. Hooks was writing about me :)This is similary to a bio,written in a different but better style.
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on November 6, 2013
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
bell hooks is an amazing storyteller and the telling of her own story is quite remarkable. While she's been through a lot of different experiences, both good and bad, her experiences are wrapped in the love her family always had for her.
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on September 1, 2013
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
What a wonderful voice... beautifully written in three page chapters...so lucky I found this gem. What honesty and depth of soul. Going to read more of her work soon!
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on October 2, 2013
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
I am in a book club and everyone thought that it was wonderful. The author's poetic language and ability to describe her setting and feelings were impactful
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on January 20, 2013
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
bell hooks is a beautifully visual writer, and I would recommend anything she's written. why is there an ___ more words required requirement?
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