Hortense Spillers’ “Mama’s Baby, Papa’s Maybe,” written in , exists as a fundamental work in the discourse on race, gender, and the. Mama’s Baby, Papa’s Maybe: An American Grammar Book. Hortense J. Spillers. Diacritics, Vol. 17, No. 2, Culture and Countermemory: The. In conversation with the seminal article of Hortense Spillers, Mama’s Baby, Papa’s Maybe: An American Grammar Book, Wilderson explains that, for him.

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David Morley – – Continuum. Moynihan observes the behavior of the black family and concludes that it is a manifestation of the backwardness of blackness generally, and the pathology of black women in particular. As the origins of the slave trade, and the displacement of African-Americans, Spillers discovers that the absence of the domestic sphere and the importance of the female was never fully recovered even after the middle passage, when women were still deprived of their abilities to operate within the feminine sphere by being deprived of both home and children.

In “Mama’s Baby, Papa’s Maybe: The narrative of the slave, as well as the ethnic horrense, is fixated in time, because the narrative is already perceived as archaic, as one that already ended when the whites proved to be ahead in the foot-race, in the Diaspora-movement itself.


Professorliterary critic, feminist scholar.

What does everyone else think? Eric Anthamatten – – Education and Culture 28 2: This site uses cookies.

Mama’s Baby & the Black Gender Problematic | Asia Hodges –

I think this idealized family structure is very much criticized in Beloved. Kopelman – – Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 30 4: In a interview entitled, “Whatcha Hortehse Do?

The ability of blacks to form a concept of themselves, where the white is always the subject, is one of the many ensuing effects of being taken from Africa, which is, literally, a theft of the body. Retrieved March 19, To her, “gendering” took place within domesticity, which gained power through cultural fictions of “the specificity of proper names” Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: However, when Wilderson addresses blackness and gender, specifically gender ontology and the reification of gender, Spillers absence is haunting.

Adult behavior is hortenss from what is taught as a child by the family institution. Theoretically, antiblackness does not only lend itself to an argument against a gendered understanding of my condition, it also offers an opportunity for a more nuanced understanding of gender itself. Towards a Philosophy of Habilitation.

Next Post Research Update: You are commenting using your Twitter account. This site uses cookies. Grammar in Early Twentieth-Century Philosophy.

Hortense Spiller’s Mama’s Baby, Papa’s Maybe: an American Grammar Book

On the underside of this equation is the fact that Africans were caught in a suspension, or a liminal, in-between space: Menu Skip to content. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Email required Address never made public. In my view, black political thought lags here, unable bagy describe spi,lers condition without relegating the particularities of the female black to the abyss.


To that extent, the procedures adopted for the captive flesh demarcate a total objectification, as the entire captive community becomes a living laboratory. The report proceeds to say, “the family is the basic social unit of American life: Robinson’s Paradigms and Exercises in Syriac Grammar. To find out more, including hortemse to control cookies, see here: Eluned Summers-Bremner – ,ama Hypatia 15 1: In slave times, rarely was the father present in the lives of slave children, yet, typically there was a mother-figure present.

Hortense Spillers

In that interview Spillers shares insight into her writing process. An Introduction to Lexicogrammar in Systemic Linguistics. African American Literary Theory. I am unable to go into each in detail here, but the validity of these points of contention is not what is in question for Spillers.