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Joy my Freedom by Tera Hunter - Book Report/Review Example

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To ‘Joy My Freedom is a vivid account of the unseen historical aspects of hardships that African-American Black women underwent during the post Civil War South. As the Civil War came to an end, the black women who were newly emancipated moved to Atlanta believing that they…
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Joy my Freedom by Tera Hunter

Download file to see previous pages... The idea that emancipation envisaged was far beyond the reach of Black domestic workers in Atlanta where social segregation, based on ethnicity was highly prevalent. Therefore, the blacks had to convince themselves of the significance of mobilizing opinion to sustain in their hunt of happiness/freedom.
Consequently, several labor unions and organizations were formed in South in order to ensure the protection of black domestic workers rights and respect. For instance, Cook’s Union was one of them which intended the care for members during ill or other urgent times. Hunter quotes the objectives of the union as follows; “its objective is not to create strikes and close up kitchens and demand higher wages. The object here is a noble one; to do good, keep well, and if sick to aid each other speed health and quick return to work again” (Hunter, 131). Another women’s organization that the age of Jim Crow witnessed was the ‘Colored Working Women and Laundry Women’. All these unions contributed to the survival of working class women of the South (132).
Comparatively low rate of wages they earned from domestic works literarily added to their tribulations. They could hardly meet the basic requirements due to high prices of all necessaries of life and due to the high rates of rent. A single assertion is sufficient to illustrate the adversity; “it is impossible to live uprightly and honestly” (75).
Hunter describes how despite their limitation they pursued happiness to ease their strain of overwork. They sought leisure in ‘Negro Dance Halls’ which was later outlawed by the public officials, for according to them- “they were crime breeders and a disgrace to the city” (160). Atlanta was already in high level of socio-economic and ethnic segregation which favored only whites. All high rank jobs had been reserved for White women while the blacks were left to domestic ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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