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Corregidora Paperback – February 15, 1987


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Product Details

  • Series: Bluestreak
  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Beacon Press; Reprint edition (February 15, 1987)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807063150
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807063156
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.4 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #46,670 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Corregidora is the most brutally honest and painful revelation of what has occurred, and is occurring, in the souls of Black men and women. -James Baldwin

About the Author

Gayl Jones was born in Kentucky in 1949. She attended Connecticut College and Brown University; she has taught at Wellesley and the University of Michigan. Her books include Corregidora, Eva's Man, White Rat, Song for Anninho, and Liberating Voices: Oral Tradition in African American Literature.

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Customer Reviews

This was a very interesting book from start to finish.
Jacque Cartwright
This was a difficult read for me because it weaves in and out of stories and characters which I found very difficult to follow and understand.
ANDREA
Jones has a way with words and rhythms that remains unmatched by most writers.
Inda Lauryn

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 27 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 22, 1998
Format: Paperback
I read the book after I'd already gone through The Healing and it made me understand why her debut astonished the literary community. She created a deep bluesy world in which to explore themes of love, geneology, black matriarchy, memory, forgiveness, loyalty...One wishes she could have told more stories, had a career trajectory like Morrison's but her personal life did not accomodate her gift. Ursa Corregidora is a beautiful blues singer in 1930's middle America. A tragic accident (or is it?) leaves her unable to bear children and tormented by the twisted lineage of a line of women that will end with her. I would recommend the book for anyone interested in women's fiction, black historical fiction, American fiction. Similar theme to Beloved but much more spare prose style, much is left for the reader to infer, improvise. A slim, powerful book.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Pretty Brown Girl VINE VOICE on April 5, 2003
Format: Paperback
From the time that Ursa Corregidora is able to listen, she is told by her great-grandmother that she must retain "the evidence" in order to pass it on to her children. Initially, one would think this is a harmless request. However, "the evidence" is an oral history of how her great-grandmother was raped and then used as a whore by her white slave owner, Corregidora, as was her daughter (Ursa's grandmother) after her. Corregidora then impregnates Ursa's grandmother (his biological daughter) to produce Ursa's mother. Not only is this a disturbing history for a child to commit to memory, but her great-grandmother's resentment and distrust of men were also passed onto a young Ursa.
Although Ursa had a black father, she resembles the Portuguese Corregidora. Her light skin and fine hair causes her to be ostracized by black women and desired by black men. She expresses her lifelong frustrations in the form of song and has moderate success as a blues singer in the small local club circuit. Ursa finds herself suffering emotionally, verbally, and physically at the whim of her husband, Mutt, who begins to exhibit the same jealousy, possessiveness, and envy that her great-grandmother shared regarding her relationship with Corregidora.
Through flashbacks and internal memories, we understand Ursa's mental anguish when trying to discern between the painful slave legacy and her present day household situation. True to the mindset of the time, a woman's childbearing ability is looked upon as her only source of power and we see Ursa's torment further exacerbated when her ability to pass "the evidence" to her children is jeopardized.
This book addresses racism, slavery, and sexism on several different levels.
Read more ›
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 24, 1998
Format: Paperback
This book gripped me in a way few others have - the intermingling of past and present, slavery and so-called "freedom," drove home the realities of oppression. When a woman whose only source of power is the ability to "make generations" is unable to have children, it echoes with a scream of despair. I recently read an article about the author, who was apparently in an abusive marriage that ended recently with her husband's suicide - and attempted murder of her. No wonder she was able to convey pain in such a vivid way.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A. Bettencourt on July 15, 1998
Format: Paperback
It is hard for me to review a book such as this. I do so as a woman, not as a black woman, so i realize that my thoughts will be lacking. As a woman from a culture (sicilian)that also puts so much emphasis on remembering not only the wrongs done to you, but all those done to your family, and growing up primarily with stories of hate, I was able to connect with the heroine of this book. I understood her anger, confusion, and need to find herself. This book contains a sublime beauty that is nearly impossible to explain.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Exobia on February 3, 2004
Format: Paperback
I first read Corregidora as an assignment for my creative writing course in college. Usually with a gripe for such readings, it was immediately apparent why the professor had chosen this book. Corregidora is an essential look into America's past: the people, the places, and the dark events that shaped a culture. Ursa is a prime example of the hardships faced by women during that time and still do in some parts of the world. This story stands to remind us, well into the future, of the struggles people face even today.
A.E.H. Veenman, an author and reviewer
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mizkaja on July 22, 2010
Format: Paperback
I didn't know I could be moved to feel, like I was after reading this book. It really inspired me moved me and it now one of my favorite books and one of my favorite writers
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jacque Cartwright VINE VOICE on May 11, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was a very interesting book from start to finish. It tells the story of Ursa and the evidence she was meant to pass on from her mother grandmother and great gram who were slaves..sex slaves at that. Anyway, I agree that the book was complex and short, I wish there would've been more. The explicit language and sex scenes aren't for everyone. Overall very good book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By E. Cintron on March 1, 2006
Format: Paperback
Corregidora is a wild ride into the sordid clash of race, identity, bi-raciality, multi-culturalism and self acceptance. I read it when I was very young and its effect still resonates. Gayl Jones is a master of the surreal and Corregidora as well as Eva's Man are must read classics. Her style reminds me of Djuna Barnes, and like Barnes, it is not an easy read, but a worthy one.
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