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An African American centenarian shares wisdom from a life well lived. An inspirational, dynamic, and one-of-a-kind woman, Ella Mae Cheeks Johnson's ordinary.
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See more. A Hairdresser's Experience in High Life. Eliza Potter. Here is the first fully annotated edition of a landmark in early African American literature--Eliza Potter's autobiography, A Hairdresser's Experience in High Life. Potter was a freeborn black woman who, as a hairdresser, was in a unique position to hear about, receive confidences from, and observe wealthy white women--and she recorded it all in a revelatory book that delighted Cincinnati's gossip columnists at the time.

But more important is Potter's portrait of herself as a wage-earning woman, proud of her work, who earned high pay and accumulated quite a bit of money as one of the nation's earliest "beauticians" at a time when most black women worked at the bottom of the socioeconomic ladder. Because her work offered insights into the private lives of elite white women, Potter carved out a literary space that featured a black working woman at the center, rather than at the margins, of the era's transformations in gender, race, and class structure.

Xiomara Santamarina provides an insightful introduction to this edition that includes newly discovered information about Potter, discusses the author's strong satirical voice and proud working-class status, and places the narrative in the context of nineteenth-century literature and history. An American Story.


Debra J. A profoundly courageous and insightful memoir, An American Story documents the events that have shaped journalist Debra Dickerson's conscience. The daughter of former sharecroppers, Dickerson never imagined she would emerge from her squalid St. Louis neighborhood to become an acclaimed journalist with a Harvard Law degree.

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A constant reader and a straight-A student, nevertheless Dickerson's lack of confidence kept her from accepting the many colleges offers she received. Instead she enlisted in the U. Air Force, quickly rising through the ranks.

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In spite of her success, she recognized within herself deep-seated conflict at being a working class black woman living in a white man's world. Her path to self-acceptance is at the heart of this refreshing narrative.

It is well with my soul : the extraordinary life of a year-old woman - Ligonier Public Library

Maya Angelou. In the poet, musician, and performer Maya Angelou claimed another piece of her identity by moving to Ghana, joining a community of "Revolutionist Returnees" inspired by the promise of pan-Africanism. Scars and Memories: The Story of a Life. Odie Hawkins.

A tough, touching autobiography. We see that javascript is disabled or not supported by your browser - javascript is needed for important actions on the site. Read more. What's New - Home - Login.

Ella Mae Johnson

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