Vol. 3, Issue 9, Part I (2017)
The black community women and their identity
The concept of identity is regarded as one of the most important concepts in contemporary literature. Individuals and societies always search for an identity that gives meaning to their existence. The lives of African-American women have been critically affected by racism, sexism, and classism, which are systems of societal and psychological restrictions. The racist, sexist, and classist structure of the African-American community compartmentalizes its various ethnic groups, denigrates the colored as inferior and characterizes males and females as centre and margin respectively. Black women are relegated to an underclass by virtue of their race and sex. Black women have been victimized not only by the racist and sexist assumptions but also by class exploitation which is, perhaps, the greatest source of oppression of the blacks in America. The basic myth of racism is that the white is more intelligent and more virtuous than the blacks by the mere fact of being white. Furthermore, whiteness is automatically equated with beauty and culture, and blackness with ugliness and slavery. Sexism mutilated the blacks and minds of African-American women and, what was worse, defiled their sexual beings and scarred them psychologically. Thus, to be black and female is to suffer from the twin disadvantages of racial discrimination and gender bias. The double whammy of blatant white racism and black male sexism have hurled black women headlong into the dismal abyss of ‘geometric oppression.’ If the dominant racist group has condemned them through an abusive ideology, black men, by virtue of their phallic superiority, have held black women as their scapegoats, victimizing them in every conceivable way. Black women suffer not only because they are black and female but also because they are economically poor. The ideal concept of woman in American community is not just racist and sexist but essentially classist. In an African-American society, black women, who could hardly approximate the norm, are discriminated against and dehumanized. Therefore, the present paper aims at giving an overall view of the subject of identity in African-American culture with particular focus on African American women playwrights. It has become quite obvious that the women playwrights aim at pushing the blacks, especially the women, to feel proud of their black identity.
How to cite this article:
Paritosh Mandal. The black community women and their identity. Int J Appl Res 2017;3(9):655-658.