by the way, this blog endorses Barack Obama as the Democratic presidential candidate - just thought I would get it out there.
Beyond policy, commitment to change, his anti-Iraq War stance, and the fact that Clinton will "fire up" the Republican base, I have decided to back Obama because he represents many first-generation Americans who are doing big things. I mean, what can be bigger than running for the presidency against the Clinton machine (note, I used to support the Clinton/Clinton ticket....how I changed, na long story....will explain another day).
And for many African Americans, the choice is sometimes based on the fact that they would like to see one of their own in the White House as well. I sort of assumed that this would be true for most who consider themselves Black (though let me add, that I have nothing against those who think otherwise...and I )
Anyway, this assumption was questioned when I caught some of the commentary of Ohioans during their primary last week. A black female (can't remember her name) said she was voting for Hilary because according to her, "she is a woman first and an African American second..."
My initial reactions to these comments were that this woman has imbibed the unpopular stance of "betraying the race." However, as i thought more over this woman's comments, I began to realize that she is not alone, that there are several black women - African and African American - who have often chosen gender over race. For example, one person that easily comes to mind is Alice Walker and her classic novel, The Color Purple. Many in the black community felt that she weakened the fight against racism in order to pursue a feminist agenda. I guess an African example would be women who fight against female circumcision at the risk of portraying their people in a bad light. Or, to bring it home, my post on misogyny in African music. Sometimes in the course of pursuing Africanism (if there is such a word), feminist issues can be sidelined.
I have not yet sat down to think of who I am first - a woman or a member of the African diaspora. I would think that I am first an African and then a woman therefore countering this woman's statement. And in regards to females that I admire that I mentioned in my first post on african feminism, I have a feeling that they would also take the same stance as well. I, admit, I have not read much on african feminist theory, but I wonder if that is the point of african feminism - to put the african back into feminism as opposed to putting infusing feminism into africa. Or rather, as I hope to do, find a balance between the two. Once again, thoughts on which you consider first - africanism or feminism - would be appreciated. If you have some recommended reading that would also be appreciated (Misan, I read A Thousand Splendid Suns - it was great...a post on Afghani feminism...akuko nke mbu...is forthcoming).
Oh, and Happy International Woman's Week!
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