Hello TTT Ladies,
I was talking to some of my family about “Blackberry Days Of Summer” by Ruth P. Watson. We had the most interesting conversation about why do black authors write about church, relationships, sex and the Jim Crow era. We were at book club symposium and sure enough that is what we found to be true.
My cousin was ranting and raving that she was just disgusted that every time she read a book the content was the same, but with a different title. She was so loud I must admit I embarrassed and confused because I did not have the answers.
This incident and conversation stayed with me because I wondered also why is the norm we get from our black authors?
I called my cousin and I simply asked her, what would you want a black author to write about? She was very quiet. I waited patiently because I am curious to know what she has to say. Finally she said “Life”
I told her that is what they are doing, relationships, sex, family ect is always going to be the topic in conversations in books. It just a matter of what degree. “Blackberry Days Of Summer” is a perfect example. Somewhere in those pages is someones life.
The truth of the matter for me is that it is not that I am not “sick and tired of reading about the”sick and tired” It is because the subjects of rape, incest, and family secretes are a reality in society. I turn on my TV, listen to my radio, and read about “Life” My anger is that it is true and very real, it is not “Blackberry Days Of Summer” What is ironic I can immediately turn of the TV, radio, and throw away the newspaper. I don’t have to think about the “pain” that happened today.
Our past as black race is about “pain” that is just a fact, we cannot go back and change or act as though it did not happen. We are a race of people who because we were treated like animals, we still have the residue of our history it is alive and well. The point is it is not going anywhere. It is a part of us whether we like it or not, it is just a matter of what degree.
I believe it take “strength” to write about life as it exists today. I believe that every time I read a book about that has the similar content as “Blackberry Days Of Summer” I am captivated to the point to look at my family history and read without fear. Maybe I can tell my father how my sixth grade teacher tried to molest me. I still remember the shame.
There was time when we would not talk about the family lies, in fact we honored them by keeping quite. We as a black race need books like “Blackberry Days Of Summer” They unleash generational curses. These books expose us to ourselves. I look at all of the self-help books we have on behavior modification, then we go to church and our pastor brings preaches about sin. We still go back and ignore about what the secular and church have to say about being a product of society and not a menace.
Black authors just bring the truth, it is not sugar-coated. They call us whores, infidels, dead beat dads ect. It is painful to read about a character and you act just like that person. Now you see yourself and it is ugly, but it is the truth. You can’t put the book down because of pride finally someone has the nerve to confront you. Some us need to read about our selves because we can be “something else”.
TTT Ladies I need to read the truth and face my fears that are buried in my history and if it takes a novel like “Blackberry Days Of Summer to keep me grounded and close and accepting of the facts for what they are not what I want them to be in my life, so I simply say “READ ON”!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!