Social
Newsletter





No products in the cart.

Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty

$17.00

- +
  Ask a Question
Category:

Description

Brief Description:

Reprint. Originally published: Pantheon Books.

Brief Description:

“Originally published in a slightly different form in hardcover in the United States by Pantheon Books, a division of Penguin Random House LLC, New York, in 1997”–Title page verso.

Brief Description:

“In 1997, this groundbreaking book made a powerful entrance into the national conversation on race. In a media landscape dominated by racially biased images of welfare queens and crack babies, Killing the black body exposed America’s systemic abuse of Black women’s bodies. From slave masters’ economic stake in bonded women’s fertility to government programs that coerced thousands of poor Black women into being sterilized as late as the 1970s, these abuses pointed to the devaluation of Black motherhood–and the neglect of Black women’s reproductive needs in mainstream feminist and civil rights agendas. Now, some two decades later, Killing the Black body remains as crucial as ever–a rallying cry for education, awareness, and action on extending reproductive justice to all women”–Page 4 of cover.

Biographical Note:

Dorothy Roberts is the George A. Weiss University Professorof Law and Sociology and the Raymond Pace and Sadie Tanner Mossell Alexander Professor of Civil Rights at the University of Pennsylvania. She is the author of three books of nonfiction, Killing the Black BodyShattered Bonds, and Fatal Invention, and has coedited six works on constitutional law and gender. She lives in Philadelphia.

Jacket Description/Flap:

This is a no-holds-barred response to the liberal and conservative retreat from an assertive, activist, and socially transformative civil rights agenda of recent years–using a black feminist lens and the issue of the impact of recent legislation, social policy, and welfare “reform” on black women’s–especially poor black women’s–control over their bodies’ autonomy and their freedom to bear and raise children with respect and dignity in a society whose white mainstream is determined to demonize, even criminalize their lives. It gives its readers a cogent legal and historical argument for a radically new, and socially transformative, definition of “liberty” and “equality” for the American polity from a black feminist perspective.
The author is able to combine the most innovative and radical thinking on several fronts–racial theory, feminist, and legal–to produce a work that is at once history and political treatise. By using the history of how American law–beginning with slavery–has treated the issue of the state’s right to interfere with the black woman’s body, the author explosively and effectively makes the case for the legal redress to the racist implications of current policy with regards to 1) access to and coercive dispensing of birth control to poor black women 2) the criminalization of parenting by poor black women who have used drugs 3) the stigmatization and devaluation of poor black mothers under the new welfare provisions, and 4) the differential access to and disproportionate spending of social resources on the new reproductive technologies used by wealthy white couples to insure genetically related offspring.
The legal redress of the racism inherent in currentAmerican law and policy in these matters, the author argues in her last chapter, demands and should lead us to adopt a new standard and definition of the liberal theory of “liberty” and “equality” based on the need for, and the positive role of government in fostering, social as well as individual justice.

Marc Notes:

Originally published: New York: Pantheon Books, 1997.;Includes bibliographical references (p. [313]-357) and index.

Review Quotes:

“Monumental. . . . An important contribution to the literature of civil rights, reproductive issues, racism and feminism.” — San Francisco Chronicle

“Compelling. . . . Deftly shows how distorted and racist constructions of black motherhood have affected politics, law, and policy in the United States.” –Ms.

“Brilliant, controversial, and profoundly valuable. . . . An important stepping-stone toward transforming the way black women and their children are treated in America.” –Kirkus Reviews

“Chilling. . . . It becomes difficult to reject the author’s thesis. . . that there is a sustained, and in some quarters deliberate, campaign to punish Black women–especially the poor–for having children.” –The National Law Journal

“An important and riveting book that skillfully and compellingly explains contemporary challenges to reproductive freedom.” –Patricia Hill Collins, author of Black Feminist Thought

“A must-read for all those who claim to care about racial and gender justice in America.” –Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow

“A leading-edge critique of reproductive racism . . . In this current era, we discover the foresight and absolute necessity of Roberts’s approach.” –Angela Davis

“Race in America cannot be fully understood without reading this compelling investigation. . . . Timely, insightful and unforgettable.” –Bryan Stevenson, author of Just Mercy

“A seminal work. . . . Indispensable. . . . Prescient. . . . Even more urgent and more pertinent than it was twenty years ago.” –Harriet Washington, author of Medical Apartheid

“A work of stunning erudition and finely calibrated moral concern. . . . Urgent, evocative and indispensable.” –William Jelani Cobb, author of The Substance of Hope

Publisher Marketing:

Killing the Black Body remains a rallying cry for education, awareness, and action on extending reproductive justice to all women. It is as crucial as ever, even two decades after its original publication.

“Monumental. . . . An important contribution to the literature of civil rights, reproductive issues, racism and feminism.” — San Francisco Chronicle

In 1997, this groundbreaking book made a powerful entrance into the national conversation on race. In a media landscape dominated by racially biased images of welfare queens and crack babies, Killing the Black Body exposed America’s systemic abuse of Black women’s bodies. From slave masters’ economic stake in bonded women’s fertility to government programs that coerced thousands of poor Black women into being sterilized as late as the 1970s, these abuses pointed to the degradation of Black motherhood–and the exclusion of Black women’s reproductive needs in mainstream feminist and civil rights agendas.

“Compelling. . . . Deftly shows how distorted and racist constructions of black motherhood have affected politics, law, and policy in the United States.” –Ms

Reviews

There are no reviews yet.

Be the first to review “Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty”

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

No more offers for this product!

General Inquiries

There are no inquiries yet.

PLEASE TEXT FOR ORDER UPDATES 860-341-2865
Wishlist 0
Open wishlist page Continue shopping

Key Bookstore