Building Houses Out of Chicken Legs
Black Women, Food, and Power 1st New edition
By (author) Psyche A. Williams-Forson
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Building Houses Out of Chicken Legs by Psyche A. Williams-Forson
Book DescriptionChicken - both the bird and the food - has played multiple roles in the lives of African American women from the slavery era to the present. It has provided food and a source of income for their families, shaped a distinctive culture, and helped women define and exert themselves in racist and hostile environments. Psyche A. Williams-Forson examines the complexity of black women's legacies using food as a form of cultural work. While acknowledging the negative interpretations of black culture associated with chicken imagery, Williams-Forson focuses her analysis on the ways black women have forged their own self-definitions and relationships to the "gospel bird". Exploring material ranging from personal interviews to the comedy of Chris Rock, from commercial advertisements to the art of Kara Walker, and from cookbooks to literature, Williams-Forson considers how black women arrive at degrees of self-definition and self-reliance using certain foods. She demonstrates how they defy conventional representations of blackness and exercise influence through food preparation and distribution. Understanding these complex relationships clarifies how present associations of blacks and chicken are rooted in a past that is fraught with both racism and agency. The traditions and practices of feminism, Williams-Forson argues, are inherent in the foods women prepare and serve.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780807856864
(235mm x 156mm x 19mm)
Imprint: The University of North Carolina Press
Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press
Publish Date: 15-Jul-2006
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Psyche A. Williams-Forson
Vibration Cooking, Paperback (April 2011)» View all books by Psyche A. Williams-Forson
"Vibration Cooking" was first published in 1970, not long after the term soul food gained common use. While critics were quick to categorize her as a proponent of soul food, Smart-Grosvenor wanted to keep the discussion of her cookbook/memoir focused on its message of food as a source of pride and validation of black womanhood."
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Author Biography - Psyche A. Williams-Forson
Psyche A. Williams-Forson is assistant professor of American studies at the University of Maryland, College Park.
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