Book Talk: Vanguard: How Black Women Broke Barriers, Won the Vote, and Insisted on Equality for All
Martha S. Jones in conversation with Karen Holmes Ward
In the standard story, the suffrage crusade began in Seneca Falls in 1848 and ended with the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920. But this overwhelmingly white women's movement did not win the vote for most black women. Securing their rights required a movement of their own.
In Vanguard, acclaimed historian Martha S. Jones offers a new history of African American women's political lives in America. She recounts how they defied both racism and sexism to fight for the ballot, and how they wielded political power to secure the equality and dignity of all persons. From the earliest days of the republic to the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act and beyond, Jones excavates the lives and work of black women—Maria Stewart, Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, Fannie Lou Hamer, and more—who were the vanguard of women's rights, calling on America to realize its best ideals.
Martha S. Jones is the Society of Black Alumni Presidential Professor and professor of history at Johns Hopkins University. She is a past co-president of the Berkshire Conference of Women Historians, the oldest and largest association of women historians in the United States, and she sits on the executive board of the Society of American Historians. Author of Birthright Citizens and All Bound up Together, she has written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, USA Today, and more. She lives in Baltimore, MD.
Karen Holmes Ward is the Director of Public Affairs and Community Services as well as host and executive producer of CityLine, WCVB’s award-winning weekly magazine program which addresses the accomplishments, concerns and issues facing people of color living in Boston and its suburbs. Many notables including Oscar winners Regina King, Lupita Nyong’o, Forest Whitaker, Octavia Spencer, Denzel Washington, Louis Gossett Jr., Barry Jenkins and Spike Lee among others have been interviewed by Karen for CityLine. CityLine has been a recipient of the Associated Press Massachusetts/Rhode Island ‘Best’ Public Affairs Program and numerous Emmy nominations.
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