Spirit and Flesh: Black Female Aesthetics
For the black female subject in the New World, the separation between the sexual and the spiritual had to be maintained within the framework of black women's historical subjugation, not just physically, but more significantly, sexually. Therefore, the central challenges for black women writers have revolved around the issue of how to represent black female characters as both sexual and spiritual beings while working within the constraints of a discursive tradition that historically maligned black women as sexual deviants. The discussion here foregrounds the interrelatedness of identity, autonomy, sexuality, and spirituality in black women's writings. It argues that spiritual processes are necessary for subject formation, and highlight the spiritual practices, perspectives, and theories that inform black female subjectivity, agency, and autonomy.
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