American University
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Naming God. Embodying freedom.

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posted on 2023-08-04, 11:52 authored by Hazel M. Cherry

The poems in the upcoming pages tell the story of a Black woman’s journey of leaving her conservative Christian community and discovering herself. Themes of childhood memory, love, loss, are interwoven. In these poems the reader will discover the interrogation of harmful beliefs fueled by white supremacy, respectability, and misogyny that led the author on a path to expanding her relationship to the Divine – one rooted in freedom, possibility, and acceptance. In four sections, an intergenerational exposition occurs for what it means to be black and woman, and a woman of faith. It is both declaration and lament, pain and pleasure, and in the end, is an invitation for other women to take their own journey to name God for themselves. Instead of silencing one’s experience it asks the question: what liberation can be found in “talking back” to God, in a way that only a Black woman could? In these pages the reader will discover theological inquiry, Black feminism, and a rebellion from conservative constructs in pursuit of freedom.



American University


Degree Awarded: M.F.A. Literature. American University


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