Politics and Affect in Black Women's Fiction

By (author) Kathy Glass

Publication date:

15 December 2017

Length of book:

134 pages


Lexington Books

ISBN-13: 9781498538398

Exploring literary possibilities, Politics and Affect reads black women’s text—in particular Frances Harper’s “The Two Offers” (1859), Julia Collins’s The Curse of Caste (1865), Nella Larsen’s Quicksand (1928), and Danzy Senna’s Caucasia (1998)—as richly creative documents saturated with sociopolitical value. Interested in how African American women writers from the nineteenth century to the present have mined the politics of affect and emotion to document love, shame, and suffering in environments shaped by race, Kathy Glass gives sustained attention to the impact of racist affect on the black body, and examines how black women writers deploy emotional states to engender sociopolitical change.

Collectively, Glass illuminates texts that challenge racism and make visible the social and political value of love. The connection of the texts through the sociopolitical power of love is clear and relevant. . . As Glass ends with Kimberlé Crenshaw’s demand to acknowledge the pain of racism in urgent attention to intersectionality, she turns to a list of twentieth-century authors that also acknowledge the pain of racism. Concluding with the conditions of racism and homopho­bia noted by Audre Lorde, Glass returns the reader to the longstanding commitment to representing social justice in texts. Clearly, this study can encompass even more narratives and her commitment to reading these closely should be commended. This book is perhaps the most extensive study of affect in black women’s literature specifically. . .