1 photograph, 4 illustrations, index
In a gathering of griot traditions fusing storytelling, cultural history, and social and literary criticism, Put Your Hands on Your Hips and Act Like a Woman “re-members” and represents how women of the African diaspora have drawn on ancient traditions to record memory, history, and experience in performance.
These women’s songs and dances provide us with a wealth of polyphonic text that records their reflections on identity, imagination, and agency, providing a collective performed autobiography that complements the small body of pre-twentieth-century African and African American women’s writing.
Gale P. Jackson engages with a range of vibrant traditions to provide windows into multiple discourses as well as “new” and old paradigms for locating the history, philosophy, pedagogy, and theory embedded in a lineage of African diaspora performance and to articulate and address the postcolonial fragmentation of humanist thinking. In lyrically interdisciplinary movement, across herstories, geographies, and genres, cultural continuities, improvisation, and transformative action, Put Your Hands on Your Hips and Act Like a Woman offers a fresh perspective on familiar material and an expansion of our sources, reading, and vision of African diaspora, African American, and American literatures.
List of Illustrations
Past and Prologue as Prelude: Eurydice’s Black Flight
1. The Way We Do: An Introductory Mapping
2. Juba Danced: Following a Story in Motion
3. The Ancestors and the Lullaby: Passing It On
4. Put Your Hands on Your Hips: Rites of Passage in Performance
5. Rosy, Possum, Morning Star: Work Songs and the Blues
Coda: Circling Back Around