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Original Essays | September 30, 2014

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9 Local Warehouse African American Studies- General
2 Remote Warehouse Sociology- General

Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty

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Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty Cover

ISBN13: 9780679758693
ISBN10: 0679758690
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

This is a no-holds-barred response to the liberal and conservative retreat from an assertive, activist, and socially transformative civil rights agenda of recent years--using a black feminist lens and the issue of  the impact of recent legislation, social policy, and welfare "reform" on black women's--especially poor black women's--control over their bodies' autonomy and their freedom to bear and raise children with respect and dignity in a society whose white mainstream is determined to demonize, even criminalize their lives.   It gives its readers a cogent legal and historical argument for a radically new , and socially transformative, definition of  "liberty" and "equality" for the American polity from a black feminist perspective.

The author is able to combine the most innovative and radical thinking on several fronts--racial theory, feminist, and legal--to produce a work that is at once history and political treatise.  By using the history of how American law--beginning with slavery--has treated the issue of the state's right  to interfere with the black woman's body, the author explosively and effectively makes the case for the legal redress to the racist implications of current policy with regards to 1) access to and coercive dispensing of birth control to poor black women 2) the criminalization of parenting by poor black women who have used drugs 3) the stigmatization and devaluation of poor black mothers under the new welfare provisions, and 4) the differential access to and disproportionate spending of social resources on the new reproductive technologies used by wealthy white couples to insure genetically related offspring.

The legal redress of the racism inherent in current  American law and policy in these matters, the author argues in her last chapter, demands and should lead us to adopt a new standard and definition of the liberal theory of "liberty" and "equality" based on the need for, and the positive role of government in fostering, social as well as individual justice.

Synopsis:

The image of the "Welfare Queen" continues to dominate white America's perceptions of black women and to shape our government's policies concerning black women's reproductive decisions. In Killing the Black Body, Dorothy Roberts explodes the myths about black sexuality that underlie widespread racist perceptions and policies, such as the proposed legislation to deny benefits to children born to welfare mothers. She exposes America's systematic abuse of black women's bodies, from the time of slavery through the 1970s, when government programs coerced thousands of poor black women into being sterilized.<P>Powerfully written, authoritative, and timely, Killing the Black Body will be read and debated for years to come.

Description:

Includes bibliographical references (p. [313]-357) and index.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

pandora, August 30, 2012 (view all comments by pandora)
If you care about women, health disparities, human rights or maternity care, this book is essential reading. Roberts goes into depth about the history of eugenics, birth control and the experience of black women in this country. Lucid and well written, Roberts raises important questions about our society, health and race. Her extensive footnotes are a treasure trove for anyone who wants to learn more about any of these areas.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780679758693
Subtitle:
Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty
Author:
Roberts, Dorothy
Publisher:
Vintage Books
Location:
New York :
Subject:
General
Subject:
Women's Studies
Subject:
United states
Subject:
U.S. Government
Subject:
Civil Rights
Subject:
African American Studies
Subject:
Race discrimination
Subject:
Birth control
Subject:
Welfare recipients
Subject:
Race discrimination -- United States.
Subject:
African-American women
Subject:
Ethnic Studies - African American Studies
Subject:
Women's Studies - General
Subject:
Ethnic Studies - African American Studies - General
Subject:
Government - U.S. Government
Subject:
Birth control -- United States.
Subject:
African American Studies-General
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Vintage
Series Volume:
93-R027
Publication Date:
19981231
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
384
Dimensions:
7.98x5.28x.79 in. .63 lbs.

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Related Subjects

» History and Social Science » African American Studies » General
» History and Social Science » Ethnic Studies » General
» History and Social Science » Feminist Studies » Reproductive Rights
» History and Social Science » Gender Studies » Womens Studies
» History and Social Science » Sociology » Abortion and Birth Control
» History and Social Science » Sociology » General

Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty New Trade Paper
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Product details 384 pages Vintage Books - English 9780679758693 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , The image of the "Welfare Queen" continues to dominate white America's perceptions of black women and to shape our government's policies concerning black women's reproductive decisions. In Killing the Black Body, Dorothy Roberts explodes the myths about black sexuality that underlie widespread racist perceptions and policies, such as the proposed legislation to deny benefits to children born to welfare mothers. She exposes America's systematic abuse of black women's bodies, from the time of slavery through the 1970s, when government programs coerced thousands of poor black women into being sterilized.<P>Powerfully written, authoritative, and timely, Killing the Black Body will be read and debated for years to come.
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