WHAT: A reading and book signing by Ula Taylor, a University of California, Berkeley, associate professor of African American Studies. Her new book, "The Veiled Garvey: The Life and Times of Amy Jacques Garvey," is about the important but often overlooked wife of Marcus Garvey, who founded the Universal Negro Improvement Association in the early 1920s and became known as the champion of the "Back to Africa" movement.
Jacques Garvey was a journalist, editor, intellectual, feminist and activist who, through her struggles against male dominance inside and outside the Pan-African movement, became a model, says Taylor, for how women could confront patriarchy, racism and imperialism. In her book, Taylor follows Jacques Garvey's political involvement and social philosophy as she navigated the interests of her gender, race and class.
WHEN: 5 - 7 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 12.
WHERE: Revolution Books, 2425-C Channing Way (1/2 block west of Telegraph Avenue), Berkeley.
BACKGROUND: In the 1920s, if African American women wrote for black newspapers at all, they wrote about etiquette or household hints. But luncheons and teas were of no interest to Amy Jacques Garvey. Between 1924 and 1927, Jacques Garvey served as an associate editor for the newspaper, Negro World, and prepared the woman's page, "Our Women and What They Think." In the nearly 200 editorials Jacques Garvey wrote, she expressed what Taylor calls "community feminism."
"In essence, community feminists are women who may or may not live in a coverture relationship;" Taylor writes. "Either way, their activism is focused on assisting both the men and women in their lives... along with initiating and participating in activities to 'uplift' their communities. Despite this 'helpmate' focus... their activism discerns the configuration of oppressive power relations, shatters masculinist claims of women as intellectually inferior, and seeks to empower women by expanding their roles and options."
This biography of Jacques Garvey explores the intellectual, political and personal world of a pioneering black feminist nationalist who was an important but often overlooked figured in the Pan-African movement of the mid-20th century. In her many roles - as a wife, journalist, editor, intellectual, feminist and activist, Jacques Garvey promoted and shaped the Universal Negro Improvement Association led by her husband.
"In this meticulous rendering of Amy Jacques Garvey's life and ideas, Taylor moves us to reconsider what we think we know about black women's activism during the first decades of the 20th century," writes Chana Kai Lee, author of "For Freedom's Sake, The Life of Fannie Lou Hamer," in a review of Taylor's book. "This biographer dares to go where few will in her analysis of nationalism, feminism and 20th century black women's political thought."