An essential voice has been added to the ongoing national debate and public discourse on race, class, and gender. African American Women Speak Out on Anita Hill-Clarence Thomas is the first commentary on the Anita Hill-Clarence Thomas confrontation written exclusively by African American women. Margaret Walker Alexander, Angela Y. Davis, Darlene Clark Hine, Harriette McAdoo, Julianne Malveaux, and other scholars and writers offer reflections and in-depth analyses on one of the most wrenching public dramas in recent history. Diverse and interdisciplinary in scope, the contributions clarify the significance of the event and examine the broader ramifications for the African American community and the nation.
When Anita Hill reluctantly appeared before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee in October 1991 charging that Supreme Court Justice nominee Clarence Thomas had sexually harassed her, she did more that force the re-opening of Thomas’ Senate confirmation hearing. Her allegation was also the catalyst for what would become a unique and extraordinarily complex moment in U.S. history-immediate and wide-ranging debate and discussion across racial, gender, and class lines about gender issues in the workplace, sexual stereotypes, white male political hegemony, and the tensions of class and race in the U.S. women’s movement. Though central to the controversy, the voices of African American women could barely be heard. African American Women Speak Out on Anita Hill-Clarence Thomas contains reflections as well as in-depth analyses by African American women scholars and writers on the confrontation and its broader meaning for the African American community.