Date

2017

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

Master of Arts

Department

English

First Adviser

Peterson, James B.

Abstract

This thesis explores the plight of being a woman of color in America through a Black feminist lens particularly as these experiences are depicted in Anne Spencer’s “Letter to My Sister” and Ann Petry’s The Street. Written as a love letter to other women of color, Spencer contends that intersectional resistance is vital in dismantling intersectional oppression. This thesis engages a deep understanding of the physical, spiritual, and mental violence that terrorizes women of color throughout generations. Almost twenty years after Spencer writes her poem, Ann Petry presents Lutie Johnson, a black woman whose life is contained within white capitalist patriarchy. Some of the power built into intersectional resistance is the knowledge that must be passed down in order to disrupt intergenerational trauma and dismantle the system that gives birth to it. Finally, this thesis is a call to readers, to build a collective resistance in the 21st century grounded in the experiences of women of color.

Share

COinS