Cover image for In praise of black women
Title:
In praise of black women
Author:
Schwarz-Bart, Simone.
Personal Author:
Uniform Title:
Hommage à la femme noire. English
Physical Description:
volumes <1-3 > : color illustrations ; 31 cm
General Note:
Translation of: Hommage à la femme noire.
Language:
English
Contents:
1. Ancient African queens -- 2. Heroines of the slavery era -- 3. Modern African women.
ISBN:
9780299172503
Format :
Book

Available:*

Library
Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Status
Central Library HQ1123 .S37913 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area-Oversize
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Central Library HQ1123 .S37913 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize
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Central Library HQ1123 .S37913 2001 V.1 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area-Oversize
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Central Library HQ1123 .S37913 2001 V.2 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area-Oversize
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Frank E. Merriweather Library HQ1123 .S37913 2001 V.3 Adult Non-Fiction Black History Non-Circ
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Summary

Summary

    In Praise of Black Women is a magnificent tribute to women in Africa and the African diaspora from the ancient past to the present. Lavishly illustrated, with text written and selected by the celebrated Guadeloupian novelist Simone Schwarz-Bart, this four-volume series celebrates remarkable women who distinguished themselves in their time and shaped the course of culture and history.
     Volume 1: Ancient African Queens weaves together oral tradition, folk legends and stories, songs and poems, historical accounts, and travelers' tales from Egypt to southern Africa, from prehistory to the nineteenth century. These women rulers, warriors, and heroines include Amanirenas, the queen of Kush who battled Roman armies and defeated them at Aswan; Daurama, mother of the seven Hausa kingdoms; Amina Kulibali, founder of the Gabu dynasty in Senegal; Ana de Sousa Nzinga, who resisted the Portuguese conquest of Angola; Beatrice Kimpa Vita, a Kongo prophet burned at the stake by Christian missionaries; Nanda, mother of the famous warrior-king Shaka Zulu; and many others.
    These extraordinary women's stories, narrated in the style of African oral tradition, are absorbing, informative, and accessible. The abundant illustrations, many of them rare archival images, depict the diversity among Black women and make this volume a unique treasure for every art lover, every school, and every family.


Author Notes

Simone Schwarz-Bart is the author of six novels and a play, which have been translated and published in many languages; Between Two Worlds and The Bridge of Beyond have been published in English. Andr#65533; Schwarz-Bart is the author of three novels, including Le Dernier des justes ( The Last of the Just ), which was awarded the 1959 Prix Goncourt and has been translated into twenty languages. Rose-Myriam Rejouis and Val Vinokurov have previously translated two works by French novelist Patrick Chamoiseau into English: Solibo Magnificent and Texaco . They translated In Praise of Black Women with Stephanie Daval. Howard Dodson is director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York City.


Reviews 4

Booklist Review

Racism and sexism have distorted the role of black women in world history and culture, rendering them virtually invisible and voiceless. Relaying oral traditions, folk legends, and historical accounts alike, this lavishly illustrated first book in a four-volume set pays tribute to the unacknowledged contributions of ancient African rulers and heroines, from prehistory to the nineteenth century and from Egypt to South Africa. Among the better-known figures are the biblical queen of Sheba and Nandi, mother of the famed warrior Shaka Zulu. Other impressive subjects include Amanirenas, the Kush queen who defeated invading Roman armies; Ana de Sousa Nzinga, who challenged the Portuguese conquest of Angola; and Beatrice Kimpa Vita, a Kongo prophet who was burned at the stake by Christian missionaries in all their civilizing zeal. A powerful tribute to the indomitable spirit of the black women who shaped the history and culture of Africa, the book should please lovers of black art, history, and culture immensely. Subsequent volumes will cover American slavery, modern African women, and women of the African diaspora. --Vanessa Bush


Publisher's Weekly Review

Novelists Simone Schwarz-Bart (Between Two Worlds; The Bridge of Beyond) and Andr‚ Schwarz-Bart (The Last of the Just) present volume one of a four-part work that will be published over the next three years entitled In Praise of Black Women: Ancient African Queens, translated from the French by Rose-Myriam R‚jouis and Val Vinokurov and featuring a foreword by Howard Dodson, director of New York's Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. A blend of oral tradition, historical accounts and 600 vivid illustrations creatively arranged and bordered by informative sidebars, this enchanting work transports the reader back in time and gives a voice to the little-known black women of the past, like Yennenga, Mother of the Mossi People. Subsequent volumes will cover slavery in the Americas and the Caribbean, modern African women and modern women of the diaspora. ( Mar. 8) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Library Journal Review

Originally published in French (Belgium: Editions Consulaires, 1988. six vols.), this is the first of a planned four-volume English-language edition that pays tribute to women in Africa and the African diaspora from ancient times to the present. Volume 1 features 28 queens throughout Africa from prehistory to the 19th century. Guadeloupean novelist Schwarz-Bart (Between Two Worlds) has created a visually stunning and well-constructed book. Every page contains high-quality color reproductions, including many full- and double-page spreads, of rarely seen art works and images of African history and culture. The text consists of brief main entries, poetically written by Schwarz-Bart, interspersed with folktales, proverbs, songs, poems, and historical accounts selected by the author. The main entries are creative in tone and format rather than offering the academic and analytical narrative of historical writings. A chronological time line of when these women warriors, spiritual leaders, and politicians thrived would have been a wonderful complement to the stories and images. Recommended for black studies and women's studies collections. Sherri L. Barnes, Univ. of California Lib., Santa Barbara (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


School Library Journal Review

Adult/High School-A look at queens and military heroines from all regions of Africa. Among those included are Mekeda, Heleni, and Mentowab of Ethiopia; Daurama of the Hausa kingdoms; Ahmose-Nofretari, Hatshepsut, and Tiye of Egypt; Amina Kulibali and N'Date Yalla of Senegal; Nandi, mother of Southern Africa's Shaka Zulu; Ana de Sousa Nzinga of Angola; Yennenga, who reigned near modern-day Ghana; and Beatrice Kimpa Vita of the Congo. The many colorful reproductions of paintings, drawings, and photographs supplement the text. Schwarz-Bart combines folklore with well-documented historical facts to add to an understanding of these women and the cultural contexts in which they lived. There is no index, but the table of contents is clear, and most chapters are dedicated to one queen. This book will be in demand particularly during the months devoted to Black History and Women's History. An invaluable and fascinating resource.-Joyce Fay Fletcher, Rippon Middle School, Prince William County, VA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


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