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Download Cultural Sites of Critical Insight: Philosophy, Aesthetics, by Angela L. Cotten, Christa Davis Acampora PDF

By Angela L. Cotten, Christa Davis Acampora

Explores the interaction among inventive values and social, political, and ethical issues in writings through African American and local American girls.

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Extra info for Cultural Sites of Critical Insight: Philosophy, Aesthetics, and African American and Native American Women's Writings

Sample text

In the following pages I interweave a discussion of womanist self-recovery with an analysis of Grandmothers of the Light. Both popular self-help books for women and womanist self-recovery begin with the individual’s quest for wholeness and adopt a twofold strategy designed to empower women: emphasizing the importance of self-esteem, self-trust, and individual agency, they offer readers tactics designed to enhance these qualities. There is, however, a crucial difference between them: while mainstream self-help focuses primarily if not exclusively on the individual woman’s problems, desires, and needs, womanist self-recovery does not.

WEST From the late eighteenth-century poetry of Phillis Wheatley to the spiritual narratives and autobiographies of nineteenth-century black women writers, the transformation of traditional African cosmologies into an African American cosmology translated through the language of Christian religiosity is apparent. Even as slaves in a foreign land, Africans and their descendants in America transformed their centuries-old cultures into a worldview that fused their past with present experiences in the so-called New World.

Associating women’s commonalities with a sacred feminine power, she encourages readers to recognize and begin utilizing an alternate, holistic mode of perception. As she explains in her most recent collection of essays, Off the Reservation, the urgent necessity that faces women and men who long to encounter the greater, larger, more inclusive and therefore more Whole and balanced sacred essence . . is that we heal the great sickness patriarchal thought has inflicted upon all citizens of planet Earth, human and otherwise, and return to the Feminine source of our being.

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