Wounded in the House of a Friend
Book: Wounded in the House of a Friend , by Sonia Sanchez, ISBN10: 0807068276, ISBN13: 9780807068274, Beacon, April 1997, Paperback
Sonia Sanchez poet, activist, scholar is Laura Carnell Professor of English and Women's Studies at Temple University and one of the most important writers of the Black Arts Movement. She is author of many books, including Wounded in the House of a Friend and Does Your House Have Lions?, and a nominee for the 1998 National Book Critics Circle Award. She lives in Philadelphia.
Renowned African-American poet Sonia Sanchez explores the pain, self-doubt, and anger that emerge in women's lives: an unfaithful life partner, a brutal rape, the murder of a woman by her granddaughter, the ravages of drugs. Sanchez transforms the unspoken and sometimes violent betrayals of our lives into a liberating vision of connection in emotional redemption, compassion, and self-fulfillment.
Sanchez (Under a Soprano Sky), along with Nikki Giovanni, was a major player in the early 1970s as African American women began to explore feminist, political and cultural issues in poetry. Focusing on performance as an integral aspect of craft, Sanchez prepared the way for such writers as Ntozake Shange. Much of this book (her first in eight years) pays back debts; in a mixture of poetry and prose, she commemorates a quarter century of Essence magazine and offers memorial pieces for James Baldwin and Malcolm X. Sanchez is at her best, however, when she places her speaker in the furious center of criminal action: a raped woman's detailed account of her attack, a woman trading her seven-year-old daughter for crack (``he held the stuff out/ to me and i cdn't remember/ her birthdate i cdn't remember/ my daughter's face''). A brilliant narrative is offered in the voice of a Harlem woman struggling with (and eventually hammered to death by) her junkie granddaughter. After such emotion, Sanchez turns to a series of minuscule poems based on Japanese forms that blunt rather than intensify her breathless energy. (Apr.)
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