Sojourning for freedom: Black women, American communism, and the making of black left feminism

Research output: Book/ReportBook

Abstract

Sojourning for Freedom portrays pioneering black women activists from the early twentieth century through the 1970s, focusing on their participation in the U.S. Communist Party (CPUSA) between 1919 and 1956. Erik S. McDuffie considers how women from diverse locales and backgrounds became radicalized, joined the CPUSA, and advocated a pathbreaking politics committed to black liberation, women’s rights, decolonization, economic justice, peace, and international solidarity. McDuffie explores the lives of black left feminists, including the bohemian world traveler Louise Thompson Patterson, who wrote about the “triple exploitation” of race, gender, and class; Esther Cooper Jackson, an Alabama-based civil rights activist who chronicled the experiences of black female domestic workers; and Claudia Jones, the Trinidad-born activist who emerged as one of the Communist Party’s leading theorists of black women’s exploitation. Drawing on more than forty oral histories collected from veteran black women radicals and their family members, McDuffie examines how these women negotiated race, gender, class, sexuality, and politics within the CPUSA. In Sojourning for Freedom, he depicts a community of radical black women activist intellectuals who helped to lay the foundation for a transnational modern black feminism.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Place of PublicationDurham
PublisherDuke University Press
Number of pages328
ISBN (Print)978-0-8223-5033-0
StatePublished - Jun 2011

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communism
feminism
exploitation
decolonization
politics
women's rights
oral history
gender
communist party
civil rights
liberation
intellectual
solidarity
family member
sexuality
peace
twentieth century
justice
worker
participation

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Sojourning for freedom : Black women, American communism, and the making of black left feminism. / McDuffie, Erik S.

Durham : Duke University Press, 2011. 328 p.

Research output: Book/ReportBook

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