Essay on Black Women in Gloria Naylor's The Women of Brewster Place

Essay on Black Women in Gloria Naylor's The Women of Brewster Place

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Throughout history, women have often been considered second class to men. African- Americans were also considered second class citizens to Caucasians. Both women and African Americans had to be strong and endure many hardships in their fight to be seen as equals in their own country. In her book, The Women of Brewster Place, Gloria Naylor has explored the burdens of both being a woman, and being an African American, as she wrote a story of seven African American women overcoming their circumstances in their deteriorating community. The women, all have their own obstacle whether it’s being a single mother, moving away from everything they knew, their sexuality, or rape. They each had to become stronger if they wanted to get to a better place in life. Unfortunately, the image portrayed in Women of Brewster Place is not too different from the image seen today. Today’s women may appear to be in a better place but looks can be deceiving. They are still being left alone to raise their children, and in today’s society that job is even harder to do alone. They are still being put down by their community, and it is still very hard for them to create a better life for themselves and their family with America’s foot kicking them down anytime they attempt to pull themselves up.

The African American woman often has to carry the burdens of their families alone. Mattie Michael, the main character in The Women of Brewster Place, exemplifies how heavy that burden can become. Mattie was a young single mother who moved to Brewster Place after her son, Basil, forfeits her home after she uses it as collateral to get him out of jail and he disappears. The pain she felt was not much different from the pain a lot of mothers have felt. In 2011, sixty-...


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...File, 2003. Facts on File. Web. 26 Sept. 2013. .

Walker, Alice. In Search of Our Mothers' Gardens: Womanist Prose. San Diego: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1983. Print.

Waller-Peterson, Belinda M. "Wom(b)anism: Reading Relationships Between the Community and the Womb in Sankof, The Women of Brewster Place,and Corregidora." Thesis. Bucknell University, 2010. Wom(b)anism: Reading Relationships Between the Community and the Womb in Sankof, The Women of Brewster Place,and Corregidora. Bucknell University. Web. 1 Oct. 2013.
Williams, Carmen Braun, and Marsha I. Wiggins. "Womanist Spirituality As A Response To The Racism-Sexism Double Bind In African American Women." Counseling and Values 54.2 (2010): 175-86. ERIC. Web. 29 Sept. 2013. .

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