“Reflections Unheard”: Black women, Black nationalism and the origins of womanism

The clip below is from a documentary in the making on the origins of” womanism” as a result of tensions between Black feminism and Black Power ideologies in the United States. The project will soon launch a Kickstarter campaign but meanwhile donations to help complete the documentary can be made to YelloKat Productions.

Should African feminists be having similar discussions – many already believe we should! Whilst the issues raised in the documentary are familiar to many of us, African feminisms are rooted in different political and social contexts and different understandings of feminism. I use the plural “African feminisms” to emphaise that the identity “African” outside of a geographical context is problematic. Simidele Dosekun discusses “the discourse of African authenticity” in her essay “Defending Feminism in Africa

However for African feminists like their sisters of colour elsewhere, the focus is on challenging the existing power structures [Western imperial and corporate domination as well as national ones] and local patriarchies which lead to the marginalisation and socio political exclusion of women, LGBTI people, shackdwellers, rural communities and migrant workers to name a few.