The twentieth century has been an era of perpetual growth and development for Black women in American society. Black women today are continuing to move from being predefined objects to becoming self-defining subjects. Books by cultural critics bell hooks, Patricia Hill Collins, and Paula Giddings are the order of discussion in academic settings across the U.S. At the same time, Black women's fiction by authors including Alice Walker, Toni Morrison, and Terry McMillan are the focus of paper presentations, articles, and feature films which explore self-definition.
Compiling some of the best scholarship and qualitative methodologies since Black Women in America in 1990, Nature of a Sistuh reconsiders some of the constructions made of Black women by "others" in higher education, corporate offices, organized religions, television and other mass media. Written by and about women of color, this book examines and chronicles their struggle to become subjects who chart their own successes and futures. This collection of seventeen essays is edited by McDonald and Ford-Ahmed and is arranged into four parts providing stirring personal testimony, theoretical frameworks, and an array of methods for resisting the oppression of limited and one-dimensional representations of themselves by others.