For my final project, I decided to focus on the erasure of African American women. Of course, there are many who have been left out of the history books, but my main focus in this project was to shed some light on Sojourner Truth, Ella Baker and Shirley Chisholm. As I leaned about these women in a previous Women and Gender Studies class, I realized that for many of my classmates, it was the first time they had heard of them. That is to say, up until 22 years of age, many of them thought Jesse Jackson had been the first African American to run for president. The conversation of Shirley Chisholm was very interesting because though she wasn’t spoken of too many times, she had been brought up during Obama’s campaign in 2008. Yet and still, people did not know about her.
With this in mind, I wanted to make a project that is informative and allows us to rethink the material we read. As often echoed in class discussions, everything presented in front of us is through the male gaze, so unless we take action and start telling our stories, the generation after us is going to reach twenty-two, claiming to be feminists, yet not knowing anything about these three women, among others.
Accomando, Christina. “Demanding a Voice Among the Pettyfoggers: Sojourner Truth as Legal Actor.” : n. pag. JSTOR. Web. 9 May 2014.
Payne, Charles . “Ella Baker and Models of Social Change.” : n. pag. JSTOR. Web. May 9 2014
Chisholm ’72. Dir. Shola Lynch. 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, 2004
“SNCC.” History.com. A&E Television Networks, n.d. Web. 9 May 2014. <http://www.history.com/topics/black-history/sncc>.