Our peer-reviewed JENdA: A Journal of Culture and African Women Studies published Issue 29, which features some great research and reviews.
It is always exciting to be presenting the work of emerging female scholars, whose research are forward-looking and with gusto! Since its inception, JENdA has crated a space for nurturing emerging scholars who are at the beginning of their academic career. This issue continues the tradition by featuring two rising female scholars, Selina Shieunda Makana in African Diaspora and Women’s Studies and Fatimah Jackson-Best in Global Health research. Respectively, their research on women’s autobiography in South Africa, and in maternal health shows both trends in research that is both multidisciplinary and timely. The issue rounds up with two reviews by Professor Charles Peterson of Oberlin College. As usual, Dr. Peterson brings a type of analysis to his reviews, often connecting elements from traditional and contemporary times into one hella-good reviews.
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Narrating Political Lives: Theory and Practice of Women’s Autobiography in South Africa
Selina Shieunda Makana
This article examines how South African women’s personal stories become part of their politics and how activism influences their personal lives by analyzing memoirs of four anti-apartheid activists: Ellen Kuzwayo’sCall Me Woman (1985), Frances Baard’s My Spirit is Not Banned (1986), Winnie Mandela’s Part of My Soul Went With Him (1984) and Mamphela Ramphele’s Across Boundaries (1995).
This article presents findings from a descriptive, qualitative research study with Black women in Barbados who experienced self-reported postpartum depression and/or the ‘baby blues’. Anchored by Black Feminist Theory and Caribbean Feminist Theory, the article discusses women’s first-hand experiences of maternal mental health and the formal supports they accessed through the national healthcare system.
If one were to take the films La Haine (1995), Kids (1995), Pariah (2011) and add dashes of The Wire (2002-2008), Langston Hughes’ poem “Dream Deferred” and a music video, one would have a reasonable approximation of what Céline Sciamma’s 2014 film Girlhood offers by way of depicting young Black and female in contemporary France. Set in the contemporary suburbs of Paris, Girlhood follows the choices of sixteen year old, Marieme (Karidja Touré) as she threads her way through the last moments of her childhood. Allied with her crew of home girls, Marieme lives the tensions of young Black life on the margins of French society.
Early in Yaba Badoe’s documentary, The Art of Ama Ata Aidoo, the titular subject, Ghanaian writer, Ama Ata Aidoo states, “Once I became aware of myself, it occurred to me that, I should add to the world’s store of stories.” Ostensibly Badoe’s film reveals the workings of the mind that created classic plays and novels such as Anowa and No Sweetness Here. Arranged with the accouterment that documentaries on noted scholars and artists normally contain, the critics and scholars present their arguments on the merits of Aidoo’s works.