Cover for Anderson: Black Feminism in Contemporary Drama. Click for larger image

Black Feminism in Contemporary Drama

An enlightening study of feminism in the work of seven black playwrights

In tracing black feminism in contemporary drama authored by black women, Lisa M. Anderson analyzes plays by Pearl Cleage, Glenda Dickerson, Breena Clarke, Kia Corthron, Suzan-Lori Parks, Sharon Bridgforth, and Shirlene Holmes. Representing a cross section of women who have diverse writing and performance styles and generational differences, Black Feminism in Contemporary Drama highlights the artistic and political breadth of black feminist theater. While investigating the intersections of race, gender, class, and sexual orientation in twenty-first-century plays, Anderson provides a historical overview of the development of black feminism--in drama, poetry, and fiction--since the nineteenth century. Whether then or now, black feminism has engaged with issues such as rape, social justice, victimization, abortion, stereotyping, racism, and violence.

This enlightening study of modern black feminist theatre aesthetic not only discusses what shapes the black feminism of these playwrights but also points out how the meaning of the term black feminism shifts among them. In constructing this aesthetic, Anderson examines current issues such as welfare, lesbianism, teen pregnancy, and gang violence. Anderson's analysis also includes a close investigation of each play's creation and the context of its production, including how the play critiques, shifts, or alters dominant culture stereotypes; how it positions goals of the "community"; and how it engages with the concept of art's function.

"The present volume probes a large sample of the dramatic literature and therefore achieves a deeper inquiry. . . . Recommended."--Choice

“Enormously valuable for its range of playwrights. . . . With its focus on texts and intertextuality, the contributors maintain a blend of criticism, cultural history, and theatre history.”--Theatre Survey

"A stimulating reading that weaves together black feminist theater and black women's histories."--SIGNS

"The riveting selections in Black Feminism in Contemporary Drama cover what is going on in African American women's drama today. The volume pays close attention to topics of race, class, gender, and sexuality, while raising issues that are critical to many contemporary debates: black women's health, representation, and gender objectification. An accessible and informative read that is a welcome addition to drama studies, American literature, and African American literature."--Valerie Lee, editor of The Prentice Hall Anthology of African American Women's Literature

"Black Feminism in Contemporary Drama lays out carefully and clearly the elements needed for a black feminist aesthetic and begins the journey toward conjoining black women's plays and performance pieces with black feminist cultural scholarship in multiple disciplines. Expanding the canon of black feminist cultural analysis in valuable ways, Anderson selects truly worthwhile and timely plays that will find resonance with feminist, literature, and drama students and scholars."--Jacqueline Bobo, author of Black Women as Cultural Readers

Lisa M. Anderson is an associate professor of women and gender studies at Arizona State University and the author of Mammies No More: The Changing Image of Black Women on Stage and Screen.

To order online:
http://www.press.uillinois.edu/books/catalog/45bfn8yc9780252032288.html

To order by phone:
(800) 621-2736 (USA/Canada)
(773) 702-7000 (International)

Related Titles

previous book next book
Theremin

Ether Music and Espionage

Albert Glinsky

Lowering the Boom

Critical Studies in Film Sound

Edited by Jay Beck and Tony Grajeda

Staging Tradition

John Lair and Sarah Gertrude Knott

Michael Ann Williams

Sonic Persuasion

Reading Sound in the Recorded Age

Greg Goodale

Butoh

Metamorphic Dance and Global Alchemy

Sondra Fraleigh

Blackness in Opera

Edited by Naomi André, Karen M. Bryan, and Eric Saylor

Champagne Charlie and Pretty Jemima

Variety Theater in the Nineteenth Century

Gillian M. Rodger

Body and Soul

Jazz and Blues in American Film, 1927-63

Peter Stanfield

The Pekin

The Rise and Fall of Chicago’s First Black-Owned Theater

Thomas Bauman

Rudolf Friml

William Everett

Creative Life

Music, Politics, People, and Machines

Bob Ostertag

Making the March King

John Philip Sousa's Washington Years, 1854-1893

Patrick Warfield

I Feel a Song Coming On

The Life of Jimmy McHugh

Alyn Shipton

Women, Gender, and Families of Color

Edited by Jennifer F. Hamer

Black Music Research Journal

Edited by Horace Maxile, Jr.