African American Women Timeline

Sydney Walla, Women's Literature Period 3

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2009
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Black Feminist Politics from Kennedy to Clinton

The release of Black Feminist Politics from Kennedy to Clinton, (Palgrave Macmillan) by Associate Professor Duchess Harris, which analyzes black women's involvement in American political life, focusing on what they did to gain political power between 1961 and 2001, and why, in many cases, they did not succeed.

2006
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African Feminist Forum

The African Feminist Forum is a biennial conference that brings together African feminist activists to deliberate on issues of key concern to the feminist movement. It took place for the first time in Accra, Ghana.

2002
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Halle Berry is the first African American woman to win the Best Actress Oscar
1995
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Women march in Boston

The Combahee River Collective protest of the murders of twelve black women in Boston.

1991
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Patricia Hill Collins

Patricia Hill Collins defined Black feminism, in Black Feminist Thought (1991), as including "women who theorize the experiences and ideas shared by ordinary black women that provide a unique angle of vision on self, community, and society"

1973
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NBFO in NYC

Founding of the National Black Feminist Organization in New York. Founding members included Michele Wallace, Faith Ringgold, Doris Wright and Margaret Sloan-Hunter.

1963
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The Feminine Mystique

Betty Friedan publishes her highly influential book The Feminine Mystique, which describes the dissatisfaction felt by middle-class American housewives with the narrow role imposed on them by society. The book becomes a best-seller and galvanizes the modern women's rights movement.

1956
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Montgomery's buses are desegregated
1955
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Rosa Parks refuses to give up her seat

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Rosa Parks refuses to give up her seat at the front of the "colored section" of a bus to a white passenger. In response to her arrest Montgomery's black community launch a successful year-long bus boycott.

1920
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Harlem Renaissance

1920's-30's; the Harlem Renaissance sparks literary, artistic, and intellectual movements throughout the black community

1913
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Harriet Tubman dies
1903
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Luke's Penny Savings Bank in Richmond, Virginia is founded

Maggie Lena Walker becomes the first woman bank president

1902
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Elizabeth Cady Stanton dies

Stanton was an antislavery and women's rights activist

1900
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Women's Convention of the National Baptist Convention is founded

Founded by Helen Nannie Burroughts

1896
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The start

The National Association of Colored Women Clubs (NACWC) was established in Washington, D.C., USA

1891
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Zora Neale Hurston

Hurston’s 1937 novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God, is widely considered one of the best novels of the 20th century.A literary giant, she was a cornerstone of the Harlem Renaissance and influenced generations of writers who came after her.

1881
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First college for black women is founded

Spelman College founded by founded by Sophia B. Packard and Harriet E. Giles.

1861
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Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl is published

Autobiography of Harriet Jacobs; includes descriptions of of sexual exploitations of female slaves

1852
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Uncle Tom's Cabin is published

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Written by Harriet Beecher Stowe, it becomes one of the most influential works to stir anti-slavery sentiments.

1851
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Sojourner Truth speaks up

Sojourner Truth, "Ain't I A Woman," Delivered in 1851 at the Women's Convention in Akron, Ohio.

1849
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Harriet Tubman escapes slavery

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Tubman becomes one of the most effective and coveted leaders of the Underground Railroad.

1848
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Seneca Falls

The first women's rights convention is held in Seneca Falls, New York. After 2 days of discussion and debate, 68 women and 32 men sign a Declaration of Sentiments, which outlines grievances and sets the agenda for the women's rights movement. A set of 12 resolutions is adopted calling for equal treatment of women and men under the law and voting rights for women.

1803
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Maria W. Stewart

Stewart began as an indentured servant and then later became an abolitionist and women’s rights activist. She was the first African American woman on record to lecture publicly on women’s rights, and her speeches often preached African American autonomy of black women.

1773
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Phillis Wheatley's book "Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral" is published

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First African American poet to publish a poem

1746
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Lucy Terry- earliest African American poet

Terry, the earliest known black poet writes about the last American Indian attack on her village of Deerfield, Massachusetts. Her poem, Bar's Fight, is not published until 1855

1619
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First African slaves arrive in Virginia

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