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This collection builds on decades of interdisciplinary work by historians of African American women as well as scholars of feminist and critical race theory, bridging the gap between well-developed theories of race, gender, and power and the practice of historical research. It examines how racial and gender identity is constructed from individuals' lived experiences in specific historical contexts, such as westward expansion, civil rights movements, or economic depression as well as by national and transnational debates over marriage, citizenship and sexual mores. All of these essays consider multiple aspects of identity, including sexuality, class, religion, and nationality, among others, but the volume emphasizes gender and race as principal bases of identity and locations of power and oppression in American history.

Contributors: Deborah Gray White, Michele Mitchell, Vivian May, Carol Moseley Braun, Rashauna Johnson, Hélène Quanquin, Kendra Taira Field, Michelle Kuhl, Meredith Clark-Wiltz. Carol Faulkner is Associate Professor and Chair of History at Syracuse University.
Alison M. Parker is Professor and Chair of the History Department at SUNY College at Brockport.


This timely collection of essays addresses a critical shortcoming in both feminist scholarship and scholarship on race, namely, a failure to apply intersectionality theory comprehensively. The conception of this collection, as well as the integrity of its central theoretic concern, marks an important intervention. --Katherine Mellen Charron, author of Freedom's Teacher: The Life of Septima Clark

All the chapters are thoroughly researched, well written, and carefully situated in relevant historiography. . . . If this is any indication of what the editors at the press have in mind for the future [of this new series], then readers and scholars of U.S. history have a great deal to look forward to. JOURNAL OF AMERICAN HISTORY [Louise Newman]


First Published: 30 Oct 2012
13 Digit ISBN: 9781580464215
Pages: 298
Size: 9 x 6
Binding: Hardback
Imprint: University of Rochester Press

Details updated on 06 May 2016


  • 1  Introduction
  • 2  Historicizing Intersectionality as a Critical Lens: Returning to the Work of Anna Julia Cooper
  • 3  "Laissez les bons temps rouler!" and Other Concealments: Households, Taverns, and Irregular Intimacies in Antebellum New Orleans
  • 4  "There Are Two Great Oceans": The Slavery Metaphor in the Antebellum Women's Rights Discourse as Redescription of Race and Gender
  • 5  "Grandpa Brown Didn't Have No Land": Race, Gender, and an Intruder of Color in Indian Territory
  • 6  Countable Bodies, Uncountable Crimes: Sexual Assault and the Antilynching Movement
  • 7  Persecuting Black Men and Gendering Jury Service: The Interplay between Race and Gender in the NAACP Jury Service Cases of the 1930s
  • 8  A "Corrupting Influence": Idleness and Sexuality during the Great Depression
  • 9  What Women Want: The Paradoxes of Postmodernity as Seen through Promise Keeper and Million Man March Women
  • 10  Epilogue: Gender and Race as Cultural Barriers to Black Women in Politics
  • 11  Selected Bibliography
  • 12  List of Contributors
  • 13  Index

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