This transgression of disciplinary boundaries allows bell hooks to stress the importance of postmodern insights to blackness, and in the same time to warn. Download Citation on ResearchGate | Postmodern Blackness | Critical of most Article in Postmodern Culture 1(1) ยท January with Reads Bell Hooks. bell hooks, “Postmodern Blackness,” page numbers from the Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism. When was this essay written?.

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She expresses that by using words like cautiously, suspicion, conscious and perhaps. Although she is an academic scholar herself, bell posstmodern positions herself outside white academia, that is, she lacks conviction and she is even suspicious of how relevant postmodernism is to black folks. She criticizes not postmodernism but directions, deviations and practices in postmodernism.

There must be new channels and outlets for the oppressed and marginalized to challenge new forms of oppression and new subtle politics of domination. It is an exclusionary discourse that gains supremacy through the appropriation of notions like difference and otherness.

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Postmodern Blackness [Bell Hooks]

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Click here to sign up. Some of the quotes I really like are:. Log In Sign Up. Some of the quotes I really like are: Crossing disciplinary boundaries of race, gender, sexism, postmodern theory, and cultural imperialism is for bell hooks a way to regain or yearn for a critical voice.

The Norton Anthology of theory and criticism.

Postmodern Blackness [Bell Hooks]

In this way, bell hooks extols postmodernism by suggesting that the adoption of a critique of essentialism would help shape an awareness of multiple black identities, multiple black experiences, an idea that challenges readymade stereotypes of black people as belonging to one unchanging, or incapable of changing, homogenous entity.

Postmodern thinking should be reflected not merely in rhetoric but in habits and styles of writing. And in order for a critical black voice to emerge, postmodern insights, visions and revolutionary ways of embracing otherness should be implemented. Being mainly directed to and against grand narratives of modernism and high modernism, Postmodern writings are barely inclusive of black experience or black people writings; more seriously, black women voices are so egregiously absent from postmodern writings as if they had no role in the emergence and the shaping of the African American identity.


Furthermore, she alludes to her book, Yearning: A Review of bell hook’s Postmodern Blackness.

Bell hooks points up the futility of discussions and writings on difference and otherness to the black experience as they are detached from the real struggle black people should face.

Email required Address never made public. Help Center Find new research papers in: Create a free website or blog at WordPress. But, according to bell hooks, these unnecessary rhetorical deviations may prove inimical to radical liberation struggles. Remember me on this computer.

This feeling of marginalisation, of being outside postmodern discourse, is abetted by the preservers and reproducers of a hierarchical discourse, peculiar to the now postmodern movement. There were books many quotes in this essay that I loved. She hioks explains the real plight of black people and the hopelessness ensued from segregation and disintegration by quoting Cornel West.

This site uses cookies. Even if the critique of identity is at the heart of any postmodern discourse, hooks warns that it could be unfavourable for the black people, that is, with the presence of a subversive white supremacy that precludes the formation of radical black subjectivity, it is necessary to check the implications of any critique of identity on oppressed groups. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: As part of shaping a critical voice, popular culture should be included within the struggle as it speaks for the underrepresented and the marginalized.

You are commenting using your WordPress. I find it odd that people would go up to someone and tell them to stop writing about something, but I am glad that those people at that party did not stop hooks from writing.

By quoting, referencing and alluding to other sources and other authorities, bell hooks supports her claim that postmodern discourse is at risk of contradicting its objectives that instead of being supportive of the underrepresented and the oppressed, might be adverse to liberation struggles.


The essay discusses the importance of postmodernism to the black experience, while raising questions of identity, race and gender. The personal stories that hooks shares bring to life the points that she makes, the stories show that hooks has personally faced these challenges and not just read about them.

She, therefore, suggests that postmodernism should be reflected in actual attitudes and in forms of writing. It is clear while reading the essay that hooks has faced several challenges in her writing career but there is not a sense of anger in her writing. By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use.

Notwithstanding the infinite significance of abstract thinking and postmodern visions to African-American experience, these notions, even if they belong with the discourse of postmodernism, have little to do with the African-American Civil Rights Movement.

To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: She, even if she is convinced of the instrumentality of postmodern visions to poatmodern black people, is hesitating and almost unsure about the relevancy of such an inward-looking discourse to their cause. Postmoeern are commenting using your Facebook account.

Notify me of new comments via email. This tells us that bell hooks locates herself outside the realm of white academic scholars.

Tavistock Publications Limited, It means that critics, writers, and academics have to give the same critical attention to nurturing and cultivating our ties to black community that we give to writing articles, teaching, and lecturing. In her book, Talking Back, Gloria Watkins explains how she adopted her pen name, bell hooks, from her maternal grandmother, as a gesture of her bold decision to speak and talk back.

It is an interdisciplinary essay where postmodern theory, cultural criticism, African-American studies and posstmodern politics of race and gender intersect.