THE BLACK WOMEN'S HEALTH BOOK: Speaking for Ourselves by Evelyn C.--Ed. White

THE BLACK WOMEN'S HEALTH BOOK: Speaking for Ourselves

Email this review


An affecting collection of consciousness-raising pieces testifying to black women's experiences with the health establishment. Modelled on the accomplishments of Byllye Avery's National Black Women's Health Project, this diverse assortment of pieces by famous and unknown black women aims to give voice to their grief, indignation, insights, self-help efforts, and common experiences in the search for effective and dignified health care. The besetting problems of violence against women, teen-age pregnancies, diabetes, cancer, infant mortality, and others are discussed in mostly original essays by Alice Walker, Faye Wattleton, Angela Davis, and Zora Neale Thurston (amongst the better-known contributors) and others. There are poems, records of struggle, victory, and failure--as well as some factual material on the incidence of disease and mortality among black women. There are also frank accounts of sexual abuse, lesbianism, AIDS and prostitution, folk remedies, and abortions. Although many of the problems aired here are common to poor white women as well, the statistics--worse in almost every case for blacks--justify presenting them as a separate experience. No specific prescriptions for a solution are offered, but the experiences recounted highlight the ravages of discrimination and at the same time--though unintentionally--provide sentient bonds among women of all colors. A unique record of black women speaking out, of value to both black and white communities.

Pub Date: May 25th, 1990
Publisher: Seal Press