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Watching #SelfMadeNetflix as a historian who specializes in Black women in work/business/industry, specifically uncovering their struggles 4 economic justice I thought abt the texts/contexts that would have helped clarify the life of MCJW. I am starting #SelfMadeSyllabus. (1)
First up, Tera Hunter's To Joy My Freedom -- about Black women and work after the Civil War, and focuses on the lives and activism of washerwomen in the south, specifically Atlanta.… (2)
Second up, Deborah Gray White's Too Heavy A Load, is a classic in Black women's history and tells the history of Black women's organizations, including the National Association of Colored Women,… (3)
Thirdly, in Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham, Righteous Discontent: The Women's Movement in the Black Baptist Church, 1880-1920, she lays out the "politics of respectability," which undergirded much of Black Christian women's activism… (4)
Fourthly, Darlene Clark Hine, Rape and the Inner Lives of Black Women, a seminal work uncovering Black women's experiences of sexual violence and the strategies they used to protect themselves… (5)
Next, Juliet E.K. Walker, The History of Black Business in America: Capitalism, Race and Entrepreneurship provides an overview of Black business and situates people like MCJW in a broader context… (6)
Also, Jacqueline Jones, Labor of Love, Labor of Sorrow: Black Women, Work and the Family from Slavery to the Present examines Black women and their labor struggles and triumphs over time… (7)
Additionally, Julia Kirk Blackwelder's Stylin Jim Crow: African American Beauty Training During Segregation explores Black beauty education during the Jim Crow era… (8)
The list continues with Susannah Walker's Style and Status: Selling Beauty to African American Women, 1920-1975… (9)
Not done yet, also Tiffany Gill's brilliant Beauty Shop Politics which explores Black women's beauty activism, nationally and internationally, including their organizational and professional efforts… (10)
Can't forget the biography of MCJW by A'Lelia Bundles, On Her Own Ground… (11)
Also, can't forget to explore other Black Businesswomen during this time, like Maggie Lena Walker (of no relation to MCJW) my blog post:… (11)
Also, for more history on Black women in finance, Shennette Garrett-Scott's, Banking on Freedom,… (12)
And, because I know some of y'all would rather watch a documentary than read, check out Boss: The Black Experience in Business (13)
Rounding out the list, but could have very easily began with these last two: Darlene Clark Hine and Kathleen Thompson's A Shining Thread of Hope: The History of Black Women in America… (14)
And the newest by Kali Nicole Gross and Daina Raimey Berry A Black Women's History of the US… (15)
I think all of the books and articles provided here would add tremendous context and #herstory to #SelfMadeNetflix. While competition and ruthlessness may be a defining theme of capitalism, I was disappointed in how this framed the story. (16)
Money matters in Black women's lives, but so too does migration, relationship, access, justice, education, philanthropy-all of these got short shrift in this made TV special. Good thing there is a field, Black Women's History, that can provide us with the education we need.
I know there are probably more texts/contexts (films, music, etc) that I could have added--feel free to add to this list! (FIN)
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