Published on February 13, 2020 in the St. Louis American
In 1998, the women’s unit of the Organization for Black Struggle read a piece by feminist bell hooks as part of our political education session. It totally changed our outlook about being black women. Inspired, we named ourselves Sistahs Talkin’ Back. I’ve been thinking about hook’s “Talking Back: Thinking Feminist, Thinking Black” since standing on the steps of the Carnahan Courthouse with six resilient black women from around the country.
A quote in the chapter “Talking Back” puts the public service experiences of these fiercely committed sistahs into sharp view: “those who stand and struggle side by side is a gesture of defiance that heals, that makes new life and new growth possible.” That talking back is more than a “gesture of empty words.” It is the “liberated voice.” Read more