Angela to Zora; Black Women Writers

By ELIZABETH'S BOOKSHOP & WRITING CENTRE

By ELIZABETH'S BOOKSHOP & WRITING CENTRE

An American Marriage (Oprah's Book Club)

Tayari Jones

$16.95 $15.59

Newlyweds Celestial and Roy are the embodiment of both the American Dream and the New South. He is a young executive, and she is an artist on the brink of an exciting career. But as they settle into the routine of their life together, they are ripped apart by circumstances neither could have imagined. Roy is arrested and sentenced to twelve years for a crime Celestial knows he didn't commit. Though fiercely independent, Celestial finds herself bereft and unmoored, taking comfort in Andre, her childhood friend, and best man at their wedding. As Roy's time in prison passes, she is unable to hold on to the love that has been her center. After five years, Roy's conviction is suddenly overturned, and he returns to Atlanta ready to resume their life together.

The Women of Brewster Place

Gloria Naylor

$17.00 $15.64

"[A] shrewd and lyrical portrayal of many of the realities of black life . . . Miss Naylor bravely risks sentimentality and melodrama to write her compassion and outrage large, and she pulls it off triumphantly." --The New York Times Book Review In her heralded first novel, Gloria Naylor weaves together the stories of seven women living in Brewster Place, a bleak-inner city sanctuary, creating a powerful, moving portrait of the strengths, struggles, and hopes of black women in America. Vulnerable and resilient, openhanded and openhearted, these women forge their lives in a place that in turn threatens and protects--a common prison and a shared home. Naylor renders both loving and painful human experiences with simple eloquence and uncommon intuition. Adapted into a 1989 ABC miniseries starring Oprah Winfrey, The Women of Brewster Place is a touching and unforgettable read.

Hitting a Straight Lick with a Crooked Stick: Stories from the Harlem Renaissance

Zora Neale Hurston

$25.99 $23.91

In 1925, Barnard student Zora Neale Hurston--the sole black student at the college--was living in New York, "desperately striving for a toe-hold on the world." During this period, she began writing short works that captured the zeitgeist of African American life and transformed her into one of the central figures of the Harlem Renaissance. Nearly a century later, this singular talent is recognized as one of the most influential and revered American artists of the modern period. Hitting a Straight Lick with a Crooked Stick is an outstanding collection of stories about love and migration, gender and class, racism and sexism that proudly reflect African American folk culture. Brought together for the first time in one volume, they include eight of Hurston's "lost" Harlem stories, which were found in forgotten periodicals and archives. These stories challenge conceptions of Hurston as an author of rural fiction and include gems that flash with her biting, satiric humor, as well as more serious tales reflective of the cultural currents of Hurston's world. All are timeless classics that enrich our understanding and appreciation of this exceptional writer's voice and her contributions to America's literary traditions.

Magical Negro

Morgan Parker

$15.95 $14.67

A National Book Critics Circle Poetry Award Winner! From the breakout author of There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé comes a profound and deceptively funny exploration of Black American womanhood.

Freedom Is a Constant Struggle: Ferguson, Palestine, and the Foundations of a Movement

Angela Y. Davis

$15.95 $14.67

In these newly collected essays, interviews, and speeches, world-renowned activist and scholar Angela Y. Davis illuminates the connections between struggles against state violence and oppression throughout history and around the world. Reflecting on the importance of black feminism, intersectionality, and prison abolitionism for today's struggles, Davis discusses the legacies of previous liberation struggles, from the Black Freedom Movement to the South African anti-Apartheid movement. She highlights connections and analyzes today's struggles against state terror, from Ferguson to Palestine. Facing a world of outrageous injustice, Davis challenges us to imagine and build the movement for human liberation. And in doing so, she reminds us that "Freedom is a constant struggle."

The Coldest Winter Ever

Sister Souljah

$17.00 $15.64

Nominated as one of America's best-loved novels by PBS's The Great American Read. Renowned hip-hop artist, political activist, and bestselling author Sister Souljah brings the streets of New York to life in a powerful and utterly unforgettable first novel. I came busting into the world during one of New York's worst snowstorms, so my mother named me Winter. Ghetto-born, Winter is the young, wealthy daughter of a prominent Brooklyn drug-dealing family. Quick-witted, sexy, and business-minded, she knows and loves the streets like the curves of her own body. But when a cold Winter wind blows her life in a direction she doesn't want to go, her street smarts and seductive skills are put to the test of a lifetime. Unwilling to lose, this ghetto girl will do anything to stay on top. Featuring a Special Collector's Edition Reader's Guide -- including an author Q&A, detailed character analyses, and the author's own remarks about the meaning of her story.

Parable of the Sower

Octavia E. Butler

$16.99 $15.63

This highly acclaimed post-apocalyptic novel of hope and terror from award-winning author Octavia E. Butler "pairs well with 1984 or The Handmaid's Tale" (John Green, New York Times)--now with a new foreword by N. K. Jemisin. When global climate change and economic crises lead to social chaos in the early 2020s, California becomes full of dangers, from pervasive water shortage to masses of vagabonds who will do anything to live to see another day. Fifteen-year-old Lauren Olamina lives inside a gated community with her preacher father, family, and neighbors, sheltered from the surrounding anarchy. In a society where any vulnerability is a risk, she suffers from hyperempathy, a debilitating sensitivity to others' emotions. Precocious and clear-eyed, Lauren must make her voice heard in order to protect her loved ones from the imminent disasters her small community stubbornly ignores. But what begins as a fight for survival soon leads to something much more: the birth of a new faith . . . and a startling vision of human destiny.

Jubilee (50th Anniversary Edition)

Margaret Walker

$17.98 $16.54

A 50th anniversary edition of Margaret Walker's best-selling classic with a foreword by Nikki Giovanni "Chronicles the triumph of a free spirit over many kinds of bondage." --New York Times Book Review Jubilee tells the true story of Vyry, the child of a white plantation owner and his black mistress. Vyry bears witness to the South's antebellum opulence and to its brutality, its wartime ruin, and the promises of Reconstruction. Weaving her own family's oral history with thirty years of research, Margaret Walker's novel brings the everyday experiences of slaves to light. Jubilee churns with the hunger, the hymns, the struggles, and the very breath of American history.

Women, Race, & Class

Angela Y. Davis

$16.95 $15.59

A powerful study of the women's liberation movement in the U.S., from abolitionist days to the present, that demonstrates how it has always been hampered by the racist and classist biases of its leaders. From the widely revered and legendary political activist and scholar Angela Davis.

Their Eyes Were Watching God

Zora Neale Hurston

$17.99 $16.55

Fair and long-legged, independent and articulate, Janie Crawford sets out to be her own person -- no mean feat for a black woman in the '30s. Janie's quest for identity takes her through three marriages and into a journey back to her roots.

Barracoon: The Story of the Last Black Cargo

Zora Neale Hurston

$24.99 $22.99

In 1927, Zora Neale Hurston went to Plateau, Alabama, just outside Mobile, to interview eighty-six-year-old Cudjo Lewis. Of the millions of men, women, and children transported from Africa to America as slaves, Cudjo was then the only person alive to tell the story of this integral part of the nation's history. Hurston was there to record Cudjo's firsthand account of the raid that led to his capture and bondage fifty years after the Atlantic slave trade was outlawed in the United States. In 1931, Hurston returned to Plateau, the African-centric community three miles from Mobile founded by Cudjo and other former slaves from his ship. Spending more than three months there, she talked in depth with Cudjo about the details of his life. During those weeks, the young writer and the elderly formerly enslaved man ate peaches and watermelon that grew in the backyard and talked about Cudjo's past--memories from his childhood in Africa, the horrors of being captured and held in a barracoon for selection by American slavers, the harrowing experience of the Middle Passage packed with more than 100 other souls aboard the Clotilda, and the years he spent in slavery until the end of the Civil War.

All about Love: New Visions

Bell Hooks

$15.99 $14.71

The acclaimed first volume in bell hooks' "Love Song to the Nation" "The word 'love' is most often defined as a noun, yet . . . we would all love better if we used it as a verb," writes bell hooks as she comes out fighting and on fire in All About Love. Here, at her most provocative and intensely personal, bell hooks (renowned scholar, cultural critic, and feminist) skewers our view of love as romance. In its place she offers a proactive new ethic for a people and a society bereft with lovelessness. As bell hooks uses her incisive mind and razor-sharp pen to explore the question "What is love?" her answers strike at both the mind and heart. In thirteen concise chapters, hooks examines her own search for emotional connection and society's failure to provide a model for learning to love. Razing the cultural paradigm that the ideal love is infused with sex and desire, she provides a new path to love that is sacred, redemptive, and healing for individuals and for a nation. The Utne Reader declared bell hooks one of the "100 Visionaries Who Can Change Your Life." All About Love is a powerful affirmation of just how profoundly she can.

The Red record & Southern Horrors: Real American History

Ida B. Wells Barnett

$7.99

Ida Bell Wells-Barnett (July 16, 1862 - March 25, 1931), more commonly known as Ida B. Wells, was an African-American journalist, newspaper editor, suffragist, sociologist, feminist Georgist, and an early leader in the Civil Rights Movement. She was one of the founders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in 1909. Born into slavery in Mississippi, as an adult she documented lynching in the United States in the 1890s, showing that it was often used as a way to control or punish blacks who competed with whites, rather than being based on criminal acts by blacks, as was usually claimed by whites. She was active in women's rights and the women's suffrage movement, establishing several notable women's organizations. Wells was a skilled and persuasive rhetorician and traveled internationally on lecture tours.[

There Is Confusion

Jessie Redmon Fauset

$12.95 $11.91

"An important book." -- The New York Times Set in Philadelphia and New York a century ago, this novel by a luminary of the Harlem Renaissance traces the hopes and dreams of three young African-Americans as they search for love, financial security, and success: Joanna, prepared to sacrifice romance on the altar of ambition; Maggie, eager to escape her blue-collar background by marrying well; and Peter, an aspiring doctor motivated by his love for Joanna. Published to critical acclaim in 1924, the story offers a moving examination of the struggles against prejudice and discrimination by members of the black middle class during a tumultuous era. Jessie Redmon Fauset (1882-1961) was the author of four novels as well as many stories, poems, and reviews. From 1919 to 1926 she was the literary editor of the NAACP's magazine, The Crisis, in which she published and promoted the work of such major writers as Jean Toomer, George Schuyler, Langston Hughes, and Claude McKay. This new edition of There Is Confusion revives her unjustly overlooked voice.

I Love Myself When I Am Laughing... and Then Again When I Am Looking Mean and Impressive: A Zora Neale Hurston Reader

Zora Neale Hurston

$19.95 $18.35

The foundational, classic anthology that revived interest in the author of Their Eyes Were Watching God--"one of the greatest writers of our time"--and made her work widely available for a new generation of readers (Toni Morrison). During her lifetime, Zora Neale Hurston was praised for her writing but condemned for her independence and audacity. Her work fell into obscurity until the 1970s, when Alice Walker rediscovered Hurston's unmarked grave and anthologized her writing in this groundbreaking collection for the Feminist Press. I Love Myself When I Am Laughing... And Then Again When I Am Looking Mean and Impressive established Hurston as an intellectual leader for future generations of black writers. A testament to the power and breadth of Hurston's oeuvre, this edition--newly reissued for the Feminist Press's fiftieth anniversary--features a new preface by Walker. "Through Hurston, the soul of the black South gained one of its most articulate interpreters." --The New York Times

Moses, Man of the Mountain

Zora Neale Hurston

$14.99 $13.79

In this 1939 novel based on the familiar story of the Exodus, Zora Neale Hurston blends the Moses of the Old Testament with the Moses of black folklore and song to create a compelling allegory of power, redemption, and faith. Narrated in a mixture of biblical rhetoric, black dialect, and colloquial English, Hurston traces Moses's life from the day he is launched into the Nile river in a reed basket, to his development as a great magician, to his transformation into the heroic rebel leader, the Great Emancipator. From his dramatic confrontations with Pharaoh to his fragile negotiations with the wary Hebrews, this very human story is told with great humor, passion, and psychological insight--the hallmarks of Hurston as a writer and champion of black culture.

Tell My Horse: Voodoo and Life in Haiti and Jamaica

Zora Neale Hurston

$15.99 $14.71

Based on acclaimed author Zora Neale Hurston's personal experiences in Haiti and Jamaica--where she participated as an initiate rather than just an observer during her visits in the 1930s--Tell My Horse is a fascinating firsthand account of the mysteries of Voodoo. An invaluable resource and remarkable guide to Voodoo practices, rituals, and beliefs, it is a travelogue into a dark, mystical world that offers a vividly authentic picture of ceremonies, customs, and superstitions.

Coming of Age in Mississippi: The Classic Autobiography of a Young Black Girl in the Rural South

Anne Moody

$18.00 $16.56

Born to a poor couple who were tenant farmers on a plantation in Mississippi, Anne Moody lived through some of the most dangerous days of the pre-civil rights era in the South. The week before she began high school came the news of Emmet Till's lynching. Before then, she had "known the fear of hunger, hell, and the Devil. But now there was . . . the fear of being killed just because I was black." In that moment was born the passion for freedom and justice that would change her life. A straight-A student who realized her dream of going to college when she won a basketball scholarship, she finally dared to join the NAACP in her junior year. Through the NAACP and later through CORE and SNCC, she experienced firsthand the demonstrations and sit-ins that were the mainstay of the civil rights movement--and the arrests and jailings, the shotguns, fire hoses, police dogs, billy clubs, and deadly force that were used to destroy it. A deeply personal story but also a portrait of a turning point in our nation's destiny, this autobiography lets us see history in the making, through the eyes of one of the footsoldiers in the civil rights movement.

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

Maya Angelou

$18.00 $16.56

Here is a book as joyous and painful, as mysterious and memorable, as childhood itself. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings captures the longing of lonely children, the brute insult of bigotry, and the wonder of words that can make the world right. Maya Angelou's debut memoir is a modern American classic beloved worldwide. Sent by their mother to live with their devout, self-sufficient grandmother in a small Southern town, Maya and her brother, Bailey, endure the ache of abandonment and the prejudice of the local "powhitetrash." At eight years old and back at her mother's side in St. Louis, Maya is attacked by a man many times her age--and has to live with the consequences for a lifetime. Years later, in San Francisco, Maya learns that love for herself, the kindness of others, her own strong spirit, and the ideas of great authors ("I met and fell in love with William Shakespeare") will allow her to be free instead of imprisoned. Poetic and powerful, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings will touch hearts and change minds for as long as people read.

Women, Culture & Politics

Angela Y. Davis

$15.95 $14.67

A collection of speeches and writings by political activist Angela Davis which address the political and social changes of the past decade as they are concerned with the struggle for racial, sexual, and economic equality.

Are Prisons Obsolete?

Angela Y. Davis

$15.95 $14.67

With her characteristic brilliance, grace and radical audacity, Angela Y. Davis has put the case for the latest abolition movement in American life: the abolition of the prison. As she quite correctly notes, American life is replete with abolition movements, and when they were engaged in these struggles, their chances of success seemed almost unthinkable. For generations of Americans, the abolition of slavery was sheerest illusion. Similarly, the entrenched system of racial segregation seemed to last forever, and generations lived in the midst of the practice, with few predicting its passage from custom. The brutal, exploitative (dare one say lucrative?) convict-lease system that succeeded formal slavery reaped millions to southern jurisdictions (and untold miseries for tens of thousands of men, and women). Few predicted its passing from the American penal landscape. Davis expertly argues how social movements transformed these social, political and cultural institutions, and made such practices untenable. In Are Prisons Obsolete?, Professor Davis seeks to illustrate that the time for the prison is approaching an end. She argues forthrightly for "decarceration", and argues for the transformation of the society as a whole.

A Voice from the South

Anna Julia Cooper

$5.00 $4.60

A cornerstone of black feminist and political theory, this collection of essays focuses on racial progress and women's rights. A Voice from the South, written in 1892, is regarded as the first statement of black feminism. Despite their imprint of nineteenth-century social thought, these essays possess an urgent, modern tone, characterized by an emphasis on debate and a scintillating wit. Topics include the importance of women's education as well as African Americans' economic roles and their literary representation. A noted member of Washington, D. C.'s African American community, Anna Julia Cooper (1858 - 1964) rose to prominence as a leading scholar, educator, and activist at the end of the nineteenth century. Born into slavery, she was the fourth African American woman to earn a doctoral degree, receiving a PhD in history from the University of Paris-Sorbonne in 1924. This edition includes an informative Introduction to Cooper's life and work by Janet Neary.