Black Feminism: Theory, Method and Practice

OSH 574 / Non Credit
Course taught in: English

Course Description:

Black Feminism largely developed out of the writings and speeches of nineteenth century black women abolitionists like Ida B. Wells and Sojourner Truth. This course will introduce you to the writings and teachings of black feminists like Truth and Wells. At the root of Black feminism is the notion that lived experience is itself theory. We will trace the historical and rhetorical development of black feminist practice and theory by discussing the work of scholars like Claudia Jones, M. Jacqui Alexander, Barbara Smith, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Patricia Hill Collins, Angela Y. Davis, bell hooks, and Hazel V. Carby, along with writers like Toni Morrison, Alice Walker, Audre Lorde, Roxane Gay, Claudia Rankine and musical and cultural artists like Ma Rainey, Bessie Smith, Nina Simone, Beyoncé, Janelle Monáe, Nicki Minaj, Young M.A., Megan Thee Stallion, and SZA.

Week 1 What We Don’t Know We Don’t Know: Black feminism during Slavery.

Week 2 The “Black Woman’s Era”: Emancipation to 1910 and Suffragettes Against Difference: Racism in the Women’s Suffragist Movement.

Week 3 From Claudia Jones to the Combahee River Collective.

Week 4 The Peak of Theory: Black Feminism from 1974-1990.

Week 5 Queer Black Feminism.

Week 6 Black Feminism in the 21st Century.


Instructor:  Mr. Preston Stone


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This course is available as part of the following:

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute Courses
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic all OLLI at UM fall courses will be taught remotely, via Zoom.

OLLI 2020-2021 Membership is required to take this course and will be added to your cart upon enrollment. If you already have purchased a membership, you will not be charged for this membership.
OLLI 2020-2021 Membership Added to cart upon enrollment.
Starts: 8/1/2020 Ends: 7/31/2021