Aint I a Beauty Queen?: Black Women, Beauty, and the Politics of Race

Paperback | June 15, 2002

byMaxine Leeds Craig

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"Black is Beautiful!" The words were the exuberant rallying cry of a generation of black women who threw away their straightening combs and adopted a proud new style they called the Afro. The Afro, as worn most famously by Angela Davis, became a veritable icon of the Sixties. Although the new beauty standards seemed to arise overnight, they actually had deep roots within black communities. Tracing her story to 1891, when a black newspaper launched a contest to find the most beautiful woman of the race, Maxine Leeds Craig documents how black women have negotiated theintersection of race, class, politics, and personal appearance in their lives. Craig takes the reader from beauty parlors in the 1940s to late night political meetings in the 1960s to demonstrate the powerful influence of social movements on the experience of daily life. With sources ranging fromoral histories of Civil Rights and Black Power Movement activists and men and women who stood on the sidelines to black popular magazines and the black movement press, Ain't I a Beauty Queen? will fascinate those interested in beauty culture, gender, class, and the dynamics of race and socialmovements.

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"Black is Beautiful!" The words were the exuberant rallying cry of a generation of black women who threw away their straightening combs and adopted a proud new style they called the Afro. The Afro, as worn most famously by Angela Davis, became a veritable icon of the Sixties. Although the new beauty standards seemed to arise overnight,...

Maxine Leeds Craig is Assistant Professor of Sociology and director of the graduate program in Sociology at California State University, Hayward.

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Kobo ebook|May 5 2016

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:208 pages, 6.1 × 9.21 × 0.91 inPublished:June 15, 2002Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:019515262X

ISBN - 13:9780195152623

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"This is a well-written and well-researched book that argues for a theoretical exchange between sociologists of culture and social movement theorists. It is a much-needed book, one that will ultimately fill a gap in both areas. Moreover, it will contribute to our understanding of AfricanAmerican cultural forms of resistance."--Belinda Robnett, author of How Long? How Long?: African American Women in the Struggle for Civil Rights and the University of California, Irvine