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

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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.

About the Author


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 Body, Shattered Bonds, and Fatal Invention, and has coedited six works on constitutional law and gender. She lives in Philadelphia.

Praise For…


“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


Product Details
ISBN: 9780679758693
ISBN-10: 0679758690
Publisher: Vintage
Publication Date: December 29th, 1998
Pages: 400
Language: English
Series: Vintage