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Sister Outsider

Sister Outsider

Essays and Speeches

eBook - 2007
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Presenting the essential writings of black lesbian poet and feminist writer Audre Lorde, SISTER OUTSIDER celebrates an influential voice in twentieth-century literature. In this charged collection of fifteen essays and speeches, Lorde takes on sexism, racism, ageism, homophobia, and class, and propounds social difference as a vehicle for action and change. Her prose is incisive, unflinching, and lyrical, reflecting struggle but ultimately offering messages of hope. This commemorative edition includes a new foreword by Lorde scholar and poet Cheryl Clarke, who celebrates the ways in which Lordes philosophies resonate more than twenty years after they were first published. These landmark writings are, in Lordes own words, a call to "never close our eyes to the terror, to the chaos which is Black which is creative which is female which is dark which is rejected which is messy which is. . . ." Reviews"'s been almost a quarter of a century since Audre Lordes essays and speeches in Sister Outsider made an indelible mark on 20th-century literature. But the words of the black lesbian feminist poet seem as lyrical and unforgettable, and, sadly, as relevant today as when she first tackled everything from racism and homophobia to ageism and class dichotomies. A must-have book that every lesbian should read."'Curve Editor's Pick "Lorde was a brilliant feminist poet and intellectual whose theories on the power of embracing our internal contradictions as well as the differences between people and groups is the way to powerful coalition building and social progress." 'New York Post, Sunday "Poet and librarian Lorde collected 15 of her finest essays and speeches in this 1984 volume. With her poet's command of language, she addresses sexism, racism, black women, black lesbians, eroticism, and more. Still powerful."'Library Journal, Starred Review"Audre Lorde is a passionate sage. I say 'is' and not 'was' because her keen insights continue to provoke and sustain us and give us courage. The reissue of this book is a gift to longtime admirers and to new readers who have yet to discover the power and grace and splendid audacity of Audre Lorde."'Valerie Miner, author of After Eden and professor of feminist studies at Stanford University"[Lordes] works will be important to those truly interested in growing up sensitive, intelligent, and aware. "'New York Times From the Trade Paperback edition.
Publisher: Berkeley, Calif. : Crossing Press, ©2007
ISBN: 9780307809049 (electronic bk.)
0307809048 (electronic bk.)
1299161707 (ebk)
9781299161702 (ebk)
Branch Call Number: eBOOK 814.54 LOR
Characteristics: 1 online resource


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KCLSReads Apr 15, 2021

February 2020

Available in eBook and Audiobook formats.

In this collection of fifteen essays and speeches, Lorde takes on sexism, racism, ageism, homophobia, and class and propounds social difference as a vehicle for action and change.

Audre Lord, an accomplished poet and essayist, was an early champion of civil rights for women and the LGBTQ community.

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Aug 22, 2020

190 pages

FPL_Amy Nov 22, 2019

Essential for your education if you're truly trying to understand and embrace intersectionality in feminism.

Dec 26, 2018

Easily one of my favorite books ever written. Lourde is a masterful writer and a brilliant social thinker. She shows us the way that all oppression is inter-related in a way that is disarming, honest, and real. She speaks to the best parts of the human soul, always reminding us that we do not benefit from ignoring or avoiding doing the work necessary to address that oppression, both within ourselves and within each other. There is a very good chance that this book will radically change the way you view the world. Loved it.

Apr 16, 2018

I would be lying if I said I could fully empathize Audre's struggles because being a black lesbian woman is something that's beyond my experiences. But reading this book is such a blessing because Audre speaks from her experiences and such a wisdom is definitely precious. The Eye-Eye chapter, in which she addresses the unsettling clashes between black women themselves made me understand several things about my own self as a woman. Very often than not, women treat each other as threat, not out of a conscious choice but out of a long history of brain washing that a women is worth only the Man she manages to get. Many such subtle realities of sexism or any "ism" in general can be understood better by reading this book. I was this person (way back in high school), who believed that Gays/Lesbians are just desperate people making stupid choices. I never intended this thought as an offence to anyone, I genuinely believed in it. Why? Because, I neither had met these people nor did the people around me correct me at this stage. Why? It's simply because our society either prefers silence or outright ridicule (that I have such stupid thoughts) than preferring a healthy dialogue in teaching each other about our misconceptions and growing out of it (though it did happen to me later in college, I think I just got lucky to be with better people). The following lines from Audre is movingly powerful -

" We can learn to work and speak when we are afraid in the same way we have learned to work and speak when we are tired. For we have been socialized to respect fear more than our own needs for language and definition, and while we wait in silence for that final luxury of fearlessness, the weight of that silence will choke us."

I recommend this book to all.

Apr 15, 2018

Important collection of essays and speeches by the groundbreaking black lesbian poet/writer/activist. Includes some of her best-known pieces: "Uses of the Erotic," "Poetry is Not a Luxury," and "The Master's Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master's House."

Nov 02, 2017



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