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Hair Raising: Beauty, Culture, and African American Women Hardcover – July 1, 1996


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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Rooks takes an interesting look at the social and political implications that hair has held for African American women. The six chapters discuss hair and its connection to black pride, race, advertising, gender, and women's magazines. She has used advertisements from different periods to trace representations of hair, which she then analyzes to show the political implications for women. She notes that discussions of hair in a political context have taken place in the mainstream press; however, the similarities and differences between the hair of women from the dominant culture and the hair of women of African American descent have never been fully explored. Rooks digs deep to describe how beauty and culture have politicized African American women and demonstrates that Western definitions of beauty are often not endorsed by African American women. Although Rooks' work is written in an academic style, the content is so compelling, readers will be intrigued by the quotes and footnotes rather than overwhelmed. Lillian Lewis

About the Author

Noliwe M. Rooks is an assistant professor of English and the coordinator of African American Studies at the University of Missouri, Kansas City. She was the associate editor of Paris Connections: African American Artists in Paris, winner of a 1993 American Book Award.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Rutgers University Press (July 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0813523117
  • ISBN-13: 978-0813523118
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 5.8 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,050,345 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 27, 2000
Format: Paperback
I used this book in several college papers I wrote as an undergraduate student, a paper I published on the politics of hair among children of African decent, and I still read it today. Rooks talks about hair and African women in advertising, popular and political culture and she really explains the historical contexts of these hair issues. A great read for any student, and non-student who is interested in diging a little deeper in the hair issues sorrounding African women.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By "divastate" on August 26, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Excellent resource for delving into the Politics of black hair in America. From jobs, to advertising, to day to day living hair affects African Americans in ways culturally and historically that many groups never confront. Great resource for women of all races to learn the political truth behind black hair.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By ~Sunshine~ on November 7, 2008
Format: Paperback
I think that this was an awsome read. It talks about how African American women relate things with psychology, culture and hair. To me this book was very personal. For many women hair is more than just hair and there are lots of complexities as to why we wear our hair the way we may, or who makes those choices and how society may feel about ourt hair (rather straight or kinky).
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By Sharon on June 15, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There is so much discussion about African American Hair. It is good to know more of the history regarding our hair.
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