Earlier this week, Melissa Harris-Perry, author of the forthcoming Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America, was on her way into New Haven to meet with YUP about her book, tweeting as she made the journey; her visit even hit the blogosphere at Now Rise Books blog. In the book, Harris-Perry examines the cultural life expressed in literature, religion, music, images, and stereotypes that have formed black women’s political identity in America. Uniquely, she draws on political theory, surveys, and research that create a psychological portrait, as well, in order to fully illustrate the impact of how black women see themselves within the scheme of American politics. It’s not a book about voting or elected officials; it’s the past and contemporary story of what citizenship means for a vital part of America’s population, and how the rest of us perceive our sister citizens.
You can read about Harris-Perry’s new book and see the rest of our Fall 2011 catalog, now available online. Oh, and if you don’t recognize the title, it comes from her column at The Nation, so you won’t be deprived of her acuminous insight before the book comes out.
In a similar vein, Carla L. Peterson’s contributions to the New York Times’ “Disunion” series on the Civil War have continued, with her newest piece on nineteenth-century African Americans, asking: “What Were the Women Doing?” Earlier this year, we published Black Gotham, in which Peterson explores her own heritage as part of the greater, largely untold history of blacks in New York before, during, and after the Civil War Reconstruction.