Being a woman is hard, being an African American is even harder. As a woman they already deal with sexist acts and unfair advantages for men but also being black is just another addition. African American woman are hated, disrespected, and underestimated because of their gender and skin color. Black woman is constantly judged by their appearance due to statistics and negative minds that title us by our skin and not their personality or character. This movement is happening all over the world and in black movements such as Black Lives Matter. This black movement transitions Black Feminism framework as a theoretical complement to African Americans everywhere. In the poem “Still I Rise” by Maya Angelou, she expresses her feelings thoroughly. She shows how being black and being a woman comes with a lot of power and pride. Black Feminism is all around the world in many different black movements around the world like Black Lives Matter.
Not many people know what feminism is or what being an African American is.
Whereas, according to Mays, Critics sought to define African American literary tradition as early as the twentieth century. A period of literary success in the 1920s, known as the Harlem Renaissance, produced some of the first classic essays on writings by African Americans. Criticism and histories of African American literature tended to ignore and dismiss women writers, while feminist literary histories, neglected women writers of color. Only after feminist critics began to succeed in the academy and African American studies programs were established did the whiteness of feminist studies and the masculinity of African American studies become glaring. (1375) Also to Mays Feminism is like Marxist criticism, feminist criticism derives from a critique of a history of oppression, in this case the history of women’s inequality. Feminism criticism has no single founder like Freud or Marx; it has been practiced to some extent since the 1790s, when praise of women’s cultural achievements went hand in hand with arguments that women were rational beings deserving equal rights and education. (1372)
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Feminist literary studies began by denouncing the misrepresentation of women in literature and affirming the importance of women’s writings Mays view as well. According to Angelou, used “Still I Rise” to show how her feminism was real to her in her poem. Like when she stated in stanza 26-29, “Does it come as a surprise/ that I dance like I’ve got diamonds/ at the meeting of my thighs?” In this part of the poem she shows her feminism by talking about the way she dances and that she has diamonds on her thighs. Expressing that she is more than just an ordinary woman she is phenomenal, and she is made of more than just women parts and colored skin. In stanza 32-35 she imports the importance of history that makes her African Americanism show like when she said,
“Up from a past that’s rooted in pain/ I rise/ I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide, / welling and swelling I bear in the tide.”
This is when Angelou speaks of the past and how it is going to change the future for the better. What Angelou is trying to show the theme of respect and confidence.
What is Black Lives Matter, it is a global Network, a chapter-based member-led organization whose mission is to build local power and to intervene in violence inflicted on black communities by the state and vigilantes. The BLM movement embodies a thread of vindication, like that which black feminist have invoked in response to Black people. Black Lives Matter is a real-world movement that is happening as we speak now. According to my scholarly article, Black Lives Matter movement is breaking new ground in terms of black freedom struggle in the United States. Digital technologies have propelled a bottom-up, grassroots movement. This movement have insisted on a group-centered model of leadership, rooted in ideas of participatory democracy. Its also both radically different and yet rooted in core values that are quite familiar to feminists. In framing racial discrimination in human rights terms, the Black Lives Matter movement is today piking up the baton of civil rights activists before them. This is still an ongoing movement that many people today can get involved in to make a different in the community and how being an African American in the world is today needs movements like this to improve change.
Black lives Matter also involves rooted Black feminist and transnational feminist traditions, that provides a coherent feminist framing for this activist work.
It speaks to scholar activist who might be inclined to explore the theoretical underpinnings of contemporary black feminist. According to Asoka 2015, Black Lives Matter is feminist in its interrogation of state power and its critique of structural inequality. It is also forcing a conversation about gender and racial politics that we need to have-women at the forefront of this movement are articulating that “black lives” does not only mean men’s lives or cisgender lives or respectable lives or the lives that are legitimated by state power or privilege. Black feminism plays a big role in the Black Lives Matter movement, to make it real there had to be some type of life behind it even though it mostly focuses on the life loss of African American men that where harmed by white men.
The color of your skin should never be the basis of how a person treats the other.
Everybody deserves respect regardless of the color of there skin. Being an African American in the united states is hard enough. Black feminism is real and plays a role in this world today. One day there will be no need for black movements or any other racial motions in the world. There will be peace and everyone will come to the understanding of values of all lives.