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Resistance ReimaginedBlack Women's Critical Thought as Survival$
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Regis M. Fox

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780813056586

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813056586.001.0001

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“Wondering Under Which Head I Come”

“Wondering Under Which Head I Come”

Sounding Anna Julia Cooper’s Fin-de-Siècle Song

(p.84) 3 “Wondering Under Which Head I Come”
Resistance Reimagined

Regis M. Fox

University Press of Florida

Anna Julia Cooper condemns ideals of abstraction and universality within the traditions of U.S. Constitutionalism, Episcopalianism, and in the literature of leading establishment writers, including William Dean Howells. As articulated in Chapter 3, “‘Wondering under Which Head I Come’: Sounding Anna Julia Cooper’s Fin-de-Siècle Song,” an avowed embrace of difference, pluralism, and conflict characterizes Cooper’s prose, while her analyses of black male gender bias in the realm of higher education signal keen insights into the nuanced constraints of ostensibly liberal politics of the era. In A Voice From the South (1892), her reconceptualization of dominant tenets of civility and equality as “critical regard”; her invocation of musical metaphor; and her irruptions of sarcasm, compel a radical reevaluation of ways of recognizing social change. Cooper also extends an indictment of the provinciality and subtle maintenance of racial hierarchies within the (white) Women’s Movement which holds relevance today.

Keywords:   Anna Julia Cooper, A Voice From the South, Abstraction, Universality, Critical Regard, U.S. Constitutionalism, Sarcasm, Liberal, Women’s Movement, Civility

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