Tag Archives: family

Close Kin & Distant Relatives: Some Thoughts on Family

Folks who know me know that I have family on the brain.  I am writing a book on family as theme in contemporary black women’s literature. Right now I’m also teaching a survey course on African American literature, with family as the guiding theme and this is not the first time I have done so.  Studying how folks write about family has been a major interest of mine since I was in college. I’ll let you in on a little secret. I am one of those people for whom their life’s work is, in some ways, a reflection of the …Read more »

“Damn, I Shoulda Said. . .” Vol. 1

Have y’all ever had one of those “Damn, I shoulda said. . .” moments? Generally this happens after someone has told you something totally unreasonable as though it were the most reasonable ish in the world. I had one of these conversations with my cousin recently. He told me he had been reading the blog and keeping up with what I was doing. Woohoo!  “You know,” he said,  “I think you’re a man-basher.” Huh? Immediately, I began  to mentally sift through the pieces I’ve written for the blog, searching for the day when I or any other CF had declared …Read more »

Daddy’s Little Girl

There are a few episodes of The Cosby Show that make me cry.  Probably as much for their unrealistic portrayals of black life that looked nothing like my real-life experiences as for the happily-ever-after endings that concluded every 30 minute segment.  The things I found most believable and desirable, however, were not necessarily the brownstone in Brooklyn, discretionary funds, or inevitable success of five children…ironically, for me, the thing that made me cry was the “daddy-is-in-the-house-and-gives-a-damn” storyline (which was the most un-real and the most tear inspiring). Nevermind the fact that daddy was a doctor, mama was a lawyer, and …Read more »

Reflections on coming out and family

As a queer Latina I juggle intertwining, complex and often competing identities. One of my most defining identities is that of daughter. My mother is one of the most amazing women I know. Although she would never refer to herself as the “f” word, I firmly believe that I am the independent, strong, determined, educated and fierce feminist I am, thanks to her example. Growing up in a single-parent household meant that for most of my life, my mother was my best friend. That all changed, however, when I came out to her. Although realizing that I was queer meant …Read more »

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