Africana Womanism Essay Scholarships

In 1960, women made up almost 38 percent of the college enrollment. Today, female students outnumber their male counterparts (at 56 percent), and are projected to outpace male enrollment growth into 2026, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.

Since women represent over half of enrollment and the cost of higher education is at an all time high, the need for financial assistance is a familiar concept for millions. Fortunately there are thousands of scholarships and fellowships catered to women, so the cost of college shouldn’t deter anyone from earning an undergraduate or graduate degree.

To learn more about how you can pay for college, follow this guide and use our interactive tool to sort through the scholarship opportunities for women that you qualify for. But first, let’s not forget how far women have come since the 19th century beginning with the first coeducational college in the U.S., Oberlin College.

Scholarships and student loans impact the success of American female leaders who have contributed to technological and medical advances, economic progress, the prosperity of our country and more. The former First Lady, Michelle Obama, partly attributes her success to the help of scholarships and financial aid, based on a speech given by former President Barack Obama:

It doesn’t matter who you are or where you came from, there are many opportunities available to help you pay for college—find the combination that works best for you.

If you’re just beginning the process of finding suitable scholarships, make sure you’re prepared for the application process by starting a folder with the assets below.

Whether you’re the valedictorian or have earned average grades, there are hundreds of scholarships to choose from. Below are a few types of scholarships you can look for.

Instructions: Click through the dropdowns below to sort by your intended major, award amount or if you’re looking for need-based aid. Click the box for a larger view.

The Gladys C. Anderson Memorial Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: April 1, 2018

Candidates must be U.S. citizens or naturalized citizens who are legally blind. Awards are given to female undergraduate and graduate level students studying religious or classical music.

The R.L. Gillette Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: April 1, 2018

Legally blind women pursuing a four year undergraduate degree in literature or music are eligible for this award. The American Foundation for the Blind gives awards in order to support and encourage one's full potential.

Howard G. Buffett Fund For Women Journalists

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

The Howard G. Buffett Fund for Women Journalists offers scholarship awards to aspiring women journalists. Application periods run twice per year. Current eligibility requirements can be found on the scholarship's website.

A Room of Her Own (AROHO)

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: Varies

The Gift of Freedom Award helps bridge the gap between a woman’s artistic creation and her financial reality. Current genres and eligibility requirements are listed on the website.

Money for Women/Barbara Deming Memorial Fund, Inc.

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Grants are available to fiction and nonfiction writers, poets, visual artists and mixed-genre categories (illustration and text) to feminist women in the arts. Two application periods are available each year.

YoungArts

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

YoungArts offers female aspiring artists in grades 10-12 the ability to grow their abilities through mentorships, national recognition and other opportunities related to the pursuit of a career in the arts.

New York Women in Communication Foundation Scholarship Program

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Scholarships are awarded to women in the communication and journalism fields. Students can be graduate, undergraduate or high school students. Students must reside in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut or Pennsylvania.

Journalism Education Association

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: Varies

The Journalism Education Association offers scholarships to those who desire to teach journalism. Students must be current undergraduate or graduate students.

Michele L. McDonald Memorial

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: June 29, 2018

Candidates must be pursuing a degree in accounting to be eligible for this award. Preference is given to applicants who are returning to college from the workforce or after raising children.

Moss Adams Foundation

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: June 29, 2018

Women pursuing a bachelor's degree in accounting are eligible. Applicants must be of a minority group, returning to school as a junior or senior or be pursuing a fifth year requirement.

Asian Women In Business Scholarship

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: Varies

Scholarships are awarded to women of Asian descent who are enrolled full-time at an accredited four-year undergraduate U.S. institution. Applicants must have a minimum of a 3.0 GPA and be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

EFWA Institute of Management Accountants IMA®

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: June 29, 2018

To be eligible, candidates must be the primary support for her family, and pursuing a bachelor's degree in accounting. She must be in her completing her sophomore year of studies.

EFWA Women In Need

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: June 29, 2018

Undergraduate students pursuing a bachelor's degree in accounting may apply for this women's scholarship awarded by the EFWA. In addition to scholarship money, award recipients receive a complementary IMA membership and assistance with CMA exam fees.

EFWA Women In Transition

Amount: $16,000

Deadline: June 29, 2018

Applicants must be the primary source of support for her family, enrolling as a freshman for the next academic year. The student must be pursuing a bachelor's degree in accounting.

Jane M. Klausman Women in Business Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Applicants must be women currently pursuing an accredited business or business-related program, demonstrating excellent potential in the field. Qualified candidates are attending an accredited institution, enrolled in at least their second year of undergraduate program through to the final year of a graduate program.

Mildred C. Hanson SIOR Memorial Scholarship

Amount: $4,000

Deadline: Varies

Qualified applicants are women of junior or senior status in excellent standing in the U.S. or Canada. They plan to enroll in a four year undergraduate program in real estate, business or finance with a focus in real estate.

WIIT Charitable Trust Scholarship Program

Amount: $1,500

Deadline: March 15, 2018

Currently enrolled women of an undergraduate or graduate program at an accredited U.S. educational institution can apply for this award. Applicants must meet the age requirements on the current application and show proven interest in international relations, international trade, international development, international business or international economics.

WomenIn Scholarship

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: October 31, 2017

Both undergraduate and graduate women pursuing a career in video game development or the business of video games are eligible. Various majors qualify such as game design, law, business, programming and marketing.

1,000 Dreams Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: April 30, 2018

Qualified applicants are women currently attend high school or a two or four year college institution. Financial need must be demonstrated.

AFWM Ford Empowering America Scholarship

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: May 1, 2018

Undergraduate and graduate students will need to create a brief video profiling inspirational women in their community or those from the Ford Empowering America booklet. The scholarship award is open to women across the nation.

Alpha Chi Omega Foundation Scholarships

Amount: Varies

Deadline: March 1, 2018

Candidates must be full-time students and lifetime members of Alpha Chi Omega who are in good standing. This scholarship for women has criteria and scoring that may differ from year to year. Check the website for current opportunities and eligibility requirements.

ANNpower Vital Voices Leadership Program

Amount: Varies

Deadline: March 8, 2018

Grants are available to 10th and 11th graders in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. The leadership fellowship allows young women to put their ideas into action.

APA Judith McManus Price Scholarship

Amount: $4,000

Deadline: April 30, 2018

Eligible candidates are women and members of the Native American, Hispanic American or African American minority groups. Students must be enrolled or accept to an undergraduate or graduate degree program. Awards are given to students who plan to work as practicing planners in the public sector (i.e. local, state and federal government and non-profits).

ARFORA Undergraduate Scholarship for Women

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: May 10, 2018

Applicants must have successfully completed the first year of study at an accredited college or university with enrollment set for the upcoming year. To qualify, students must be a female voting member of a parish of The Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America.

Armenian International Women's Association Scholarships

Amount: Varies

Deadline: April 19, 2018

Awards are given to full-time female students of Armenian descent who are currently attending accredited colleges and universities. Applicants must be entering their junior or senior year of an undergraduate program, or be a graduate student, in order to be eligible.

AWMF & Ford Emerging Voices Scholarship

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: Varies

Applicants will submit a written essay on a suggested topic. This women's scholarship focuses on undergraduate students who will be enrolled for a full semester or school year.

Betty Hansen Continuing Education/Cultural-Heritage Grant

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Candidates must be enrolled at least part-time at an educational, accredited or approved school, or be in a workshop, course or seminar, or language class relating to Danish heritage or culture. This scholarship is awarded to women by the Danish Sisterhood of America.

Betty Hansen National Scholarship

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: March 1, 2018

Applicants must have a GPA of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale and be enrolled at or planning to enter full-time at a four-year accredited institution for an undergraduate or graduate degree. Awards are given to young women by the Danish Sisterhood of America.

Bishop John W. Hamilton Scholarship

Amount: $500

Deadline: Varies

Candidates must be African American female students who have been active members of United Methodist Church for at least one year. A GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale or higher is necessary, and preference is given to those enrolled at a historically black college or university.

Caitlin Brondolo Golf Scholarship

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: May 31, 2018

Applicants are high school seniors who have been accepted to an accredited U.S. college or university. Qualified candidates have a 3.5 GPA or higher (on a 4.0 scale) and have participated for at least two years on a high school golf team. Applicants must also be accepted and planning to play golf on a women's collegiate team.

Daughters of the Cincinnati Scholarship

Amount: $16,000

Deadline: March 15, 2018

To be eligible, candidates must be a daughter of a career commissioned officer in the United States armed services. Students must also be in their senior year of high school at the time of application.

Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War

Amount: $250

Deadline: June 1, 2018

Applicants must apply during their senior year of high school and must be active as a Daughters of Union Veterans for a minimum of two years. Applicants will submit their grades along with information about their extracurricular activities.

Dinah Shore Scholarship

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: Varies

High school seniors who are pursuing a college education and have played golf in the community or for their high school are eligible to apply. Eligible candidates are women not planning to play collegiate golf.

Distinguished Young Women Scholarship Program

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

To first qualify for any award, candidates must participate in a Distinguished Young Women event. College-granted and cash tuition scholarships are available. See scholarship website for various details and application requirements.

Dr. Blanca Moore-Velez Woman of Substance Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: March 1, 2018

African-American undergraduate women who are at least 35 years old are eligible for this award. A GPA of 3.0 or better is necessary. Students submit essays with their applications.

Dr. Wynetta A. Frazier "Sister to Sister" Scholarship

Amount: $500

Deadline: April 1, 2018

Applicants must be African American women of age 35 or older. Applicants must be a student re-entering her studies, whose educational path was interrupted by family responsibilities or other personal demands. To be eligible, students must be seeking a college degree program.

EWGA Foundation's Women On Par Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: April 15, 2018

Candidates must be women aged 30 or older as of January 1 and be pursuing a vocational, technical, associate or bachelor's degree. Awards are for first-time applicants to school or those returning to school after an absence.

Get Girls Golfing Scholarship

Amount: $1,500

Deadline: May 15, 2018

Awards are given to high school seniors who have played golf competitively on their women's high school team. Students must also be planning to play golf as a freshman at a two or four year institution. Scholarships are given based on personal achievement, golf accomplishments and overall need.

Girl Talk's National Leader of the Year Scholarship

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: March 1, 2018

Awards are given to a junior or senior in high school who is a current Girl Talk member. The chosen candidate is one who best personifies the mission and values of Girl Talk.

Girls Impact the World Film Festival Green IS Award

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: March 1, 2018

Applications are open to female undergraduate students and high school students. Candidates must submit a video that either raises awareness about a critical issue affecting women around the world or proposes a solution to a serious challenge faced by women.

Girls Impact the World Film Festival Scholarship

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: January 20, 2018

Candidates will submit a three to six minute film on a critical women's issue or a solution to a challenge women face in the world. Both high school students and undergraduate students can submit entries.

Girls Who Illustrate Awesomeness Scholarship

Amount: $750

Deadline: December 1, 2017

Young women of color who are currently enrolled or will be enrolled in an undergraduate program are eligible to apply. A minimum of a 3.0 GPA is required, and applicants must submit a brief essay about how they plan to change the world.

Girlterest Magazine

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: December 30, 2017

Awards are given to women who are currently students at the high school, undergraduate or postgraduate level. Applicants can apply no matter their major, though preference is given to those who are pursuing a career in communications, sociology, feminism and women's studies.

Give, Love, Laugh Scholarship

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: March 1, 2018

Candidates must be a high school junior or senior who is a Girl Talk Leader. Applicants must have a 3.0 GPA or better, and plan to attend an accredited two or four year institution during the upcoming school year. Applicants will complete a community service project and submit the results of their project.

Harriet Fitzgerald Scholarship for Women

Amount: $10,000

Deadline: February 6, 2018

Eligible candidates include high school seniors, women who have attended less than one semester of college and early college applicants. Candidates must be accepted to or enrolled at a women's college. Preference is given to students with a 3.7 GPA or higher and a successful score on either on the ACT or SAT.

HomeKitchenary Student Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: June 30, 2018

Awards are offered to daughters who lost a parent to breast cancer or have a parent who is a breast cancer survivor. Essays are submitted with an application. Eligible candidates are high school students who have a minimum of a 3.0 GPA.

Jeannette Rankin Women's Scholarship Fund

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: March 18, 2018

Women of age 35 years or older who are low-income and pursuing a vocational, technical, associate's or first bachelor's degree are eligible candidates. Applicants must be accepted to or enrolled in an accredited institution.

Judy Wendland-Young College Scholarship

Amount: $20,000

Deadline: May 4, 2018

Applicants must be women 35 years old or older who have not previously attended an accredited university offering bachelor's degrees. Candidates must be admitted to an accredited institution offering bachelor's degrees.

Kabis Memorial Internship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: December 1, 2017

Applicants for this internship at the National Federation of Republican Women headquarters must be at least a junior in college or a college student 21 years of age or older. Due to the nature of the internship, applicants should have a solid foundation of government knowledge with a keen interest in politics.

Kappa Kappa Gamma Scholarships

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: February 1, 2018

Initiated members of Kappa Kappa Gamma Sorority are eligible to apply for awards toward an undergraduate or graduate education. Students should have at least a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale.

Lettie Pate Whitehead Scholarship Program

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Women who plan to attend or currently attend an accredited institution in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Tennessee are eligible to apply. The Lettie Pate Whitehead Scholarship Program funds annual awards for various institutions and degree programs. See the program's website for details and participating colleges.

Lifetime Adoption Foundation Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Due to the Lifetime Adoption Foundation Scholarship's nature and mission, applicants must be a birth mother that placed a child for adoption after 1990. Applicants need to provide proof of part-time or full-time enrollment at an educational institution or trade school. Students must have a C or higher GPA.

Margaret McNamara Memorial Fund

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Women over the age of 25 who are not citizens of the U.S. or Canada but attend institutions in those countries are eligible to apply. Some scholarships provide up to $12,000, while others offer funding for study abroad experiences. See the website for current awards and eligibility requirements.

Marilynn Smith Scholarship

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: April 30, 2018

Eligible applicants are high school seniors who have played golf in her community or for her high school golf. Candidates need to be planning to play golf at an accredited U.S. institution.

National Pathfinder Scholarship

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: June 1, 2018

Eligible candidates are female undergraduate sophomores, juniors, seniors or graduate students. Established in 1985, the National Pathfinder Scholarship Fund was formed in honor of First Lady Nancy Reagan.

NCTA/AWM Scholarship

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: Varies

Female scholarship candidates must be attend an accredited college or university in the U.S. Applicants submit a project concept from industry-specific topics and include a statement about why the topic is valuable.

NeW Young Women's Essay Contest

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: September 30, 2017

Awards are given to high school seniors and undergraduate students for writing an essay based on conservative ideas and intellectual diversity. Applicants must be a woman who is a legal resident of the U.S. or the District of Columbia.

NeW's Young Women's Leadership Retreat

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: April 16, 2018

Currently enrolled or upcoming undergraduate students may apply for the Young Women's Leadership Retreat by submitting an essay regarding your interest in the program. The submission puts candidates in the running for a free leadership retreat, focused on bringing conservative women together.

NFWL/NRA Bill of Rights Essay Scholarship Contest

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: July 8, 2018

High school junior and senior women are eligible to apply. An essay is required along with the application. Awards also include an all-expense-paid trip to NFWL's Annual Conference.

No Bull Sports Scholarship

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: December 1, 2017

High school sophomores, juniors and seniors who plan to pursue an athletic endeavor in college are eligible for this award. No Bull Sports supports smart, talented, trailblazing young women with the resources needed to achieve academic and athletic goals.

Owanah Anderson Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

This women's scholarship is a two-year award available to undergraduate students. Those of all majors and fields of study are welcome to apply.

P.E.O. Program for Continuing Education

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: Varies

The P.E.O. Program supports women whose education was interrupted. Candidates must be enrolled in a degree or certificate program and be a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident.

Patsy Takemoto Mink Foundation Scholarship

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: August 1, 2018

To apply, students must be at least 17 years of age and enrolled in a GED, ESL, skills training program, or be pursuing an associate degree, technical or vocational degree, a first bachelor's degree or a master's or doctoral degree. Applicants must also be a mother to a minor and be of low-income status.

Phyllis G. Meekins Scholarship

Amount: $1,250

Deadline: Varies

This scholarship is awarded to a high school senior from a recognized minority background who is planning to enroll in full-time coursework and play collegiate golf at an accredited university or college in the U.S. This women's scholarship is needs-based.

Red Thread Foundation Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: April 15, 2018

Qualified candidates are women of an international background, including foreign students, first-generation Americans or immigrants. Candidates must first year entrants to a college or university program in U.S. for the upcoming academic year.

S.H.E. Squared "Future Female Leaders" Scholarship

Amount: $500

Deadline: September 1, 2017

First-time college freshmen who are in their first semester and at least 16 years of age are eligible. Candidates must be women with financial need. An essay will be required along with a complete application.

Seeds of Fortune Inc. Scholarship

Amount: $500

Deadline: December 31, 2017

Applicants must attend a public high school in NYC and be of sophomore or junior status. Candidates also must be women of a minority group (i.e. African American/African descent, South Asian, Latina or Native American).

Soroptimist Live Your Dream Awards

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

This scholarship is for women who are the primary financial support for themselves and their dependents (see scholarship website for dependent qualifications). Applicants must be accepted to or currently enrolled in a skills training, vocational training or undergraduate degree program.

Talbot's Women's Scholarship Fund

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

To be eligible, candidates must be seeking an undergraduate degree from a two or four year university or college, or a technical/vocational school. For more details, see the Talbot's Women's Scholarship Fund website.

The Helen Laughlin AM Mode Memorial Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: January 31, 2018

Women attending or planning to attend a four year college or university are eligible. Preference is given to amateur radio operators performing at a high academic level and those who are residents of the states of Texas and Arkansas, along with those from the ARRL West Gulf region.

The Sara Scholarship

Amount: $8,000

Deadline: May 1, 2018

High school seniors pursuing a college degree who emphasis excellence in character and academic achievement are eligible to apply. Applicants must be women who have active engagement with the sport of golf, though skill level is not a criterion.

Traub-Dicker Rainbow Scholarship

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: May 18, 2018

This award supports LGBTQ women in their pursuit of higher education. Applicants can be high school seniors or those already matriculated in a year of undergraduate or graduate study.

USBC Alberta E. Crowe Star of Tomorrow

Amount: $6,000

Deadline: December 1, 2017

This award is for a high school senior or current college student who competes in the sport of women's bowling. Candidates must have a GPA of 3.0 or better, and be a youth member of USBC.

Women's Army Corps Veterans' Association Scholarship

Amount: $1,500

Deadline: May 1, 2018

Awards are intended to support relatives of Army Service Women. Applicants should be high school seniors with a minimum GPA of 3.5 on a 4.0 scale.

Women's Independence Scholarship Program (WISP)

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Candidates are female survivors of intimate partner abuse who are now separated from their abuser who are in critical need of financial assistance. Applicants must accepted to or enrolled in a course of study at an accredited U.S. institution.

Women's Western Golf Foundation Scholarship

Amount: $8,000

Deadline: March 1, 2018

High school seniors who intend to graduate and enroll in an accredited undergraduate college or university are eligible to apply. Candidates must have connection with the sport of women's golf, but skill is not a criterion for awards.

Deborah Partridge Wolfe International Fellowship (Undergraduate)

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: February 1, 2018

The Deborah Partridge Wolfe International Fellowship supports African American women studying abroad. Candidates may be undergraduate or graduate students.

AMWA Medical Education Scholarships

Amount: $500

Deadline: Varies

This scholarship is awarded to female applicants who have an active AMWA Student Membership. Award decisions are based on an essay, financial information and a letter of recommendation.

Elizabeth Garde National Scholarship

Amount: $850

Deadline: March 1, 2018

Qualified applicants are post high school students or graduate students pursuing a degree nursing or other medical field. Students must have a GPA of at least a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Scholarships are given by the Danish Sisterhood of America.

Haffizulla Family Scholarship Application

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: December 31, 2017

Eligible applicants are women who have been actively involved in the student division of AMWA for at least two years and are premedical student members in good standing.

Irene and Daisy MacGregor Memorial Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: February 10, 2018

Female students with a record of academic excellence who are accepted to or in pursuit of studying to become a medical doctor are eligible for this award. The scholarship may be renewed if a 3.25 GPA or higher is maintained.

S. Evelyn Lewis Memorial Medical Health Science Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Undergraduate and graduate women enrolled in a medical or health field are eligible to apply. Students do not need to be members of the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority.

AMWA Young Women in Science Awards

Amount: Varies

Deadline: December 15, 2017

Awards are given to winners for through third place at the AMWA Annual Meeting student poster presentation. Evaluation of research posters is formed on the basis of presentation, basic science and commitment to an innovative and significant research project in the field of medical and scientific knowledge.

Young Women in Public Affairs Award

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Candidates are women aged 16 to 19 and demonstrate active involvement and leadership with volunteerism. Applicants should also have experience in student government, local government or workplace leadership.

WIFLE Scholarship Program

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: May 2, 2018

Candidates should possess an interest in the field of law enforcement. Only current female undergraduate students are eligible to apply. Majors related to law enforcement are preferred and can include areas such as public administration, criminal justice, computer science, linguistics arts, physics, chemistry and finance.

Women In Defense HORIZONS Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: June 12, 2018

To be eligible for awards, women must be currently enrolled at a college or university pursuing an undergraduate degree at the junior level or higher, or be enrolled in a graduate program. Successful candidates demonstrate interest and intent to pursue a career related to national defense or security.

Women's Overseas Service League

Amount: Varies

Deadline: March 1, 2018

Women who are commited to advancing in their military or other public service careers can apply for this scholarship. Students must be currently enrolled and have successfully completed a minimum of 12 semester or 18 quarter hours of study.

WomenLead Scholarship

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: April 30, 2018

Awards are granted to women who offer diverse leadership in nonprofits, ministry and public service. Women who lead through bold action, innovation and faith-inspired passion are given preference. For specific educational details, please visit the website.

Presbyterian Women Leadership Development Grant Program

Amount: $500

Deadline: Varies

Women active in the U.S. Presbyterian Church who wish to develop their leadership skills are eligible to apply. Scholarships are granted to those who wish to further the mission of Presbyterian Women.

CTU International Women's Scholarship Fund

Amount: Varies

Deadline: March 3, 2018

The International Women's Scholarship supports lay women who come from developing countries who are seeking Roman Catholic ministry credentials. Applicants must agree to work in their country after program completion.

Army Women’s Foundation Legacy Scholarship

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: January 15, 2018

This scholarship honors the service of women in the Army. Applicants must have served or is currently serving honorably in the U.S. Army Reserve, U.S. Army, Army National Guard or be the child of a women who has served. Students need a 3.0 GPA or higher to qualify.

Dr. Julianne Malveaux Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: March 1, 2018

Awards are available for African-American female students who are enrolled in an undergraduate program as a sophomore or junior. Eligible majors include public policy, writing, journalism and economics.

Irene Adler Prize

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: April 30, 2018

Eligible candidates are women entering or continuing their pursuit of a bachelor's, master's or PhD degree in creative writing, journalism or literature at an accredited institution in the U.S. or Canada. A short essay is required along with an application.

The Floyd Mayweather Jr. Foundation

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: Varies

Eligible students will be in their final three years of undergraduate schooling or first year of a graduate program. Candidates must be women who have elected one of the following majors: Journalism, Communication Studies, Public Relations, Marketing, or Media Studies. Preference is given to those who desire to work in the sports or entertainment industry.

Association for Women in Sports Media Intern/Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: Varies

Scholarships are open to full-time female students who are pursuing a career in sports media. Eligible majors include public relations, writing, copy editing and broadcasting.

Loreen Arbus Foundation Scholarship

Amount: $2,500

Deadline: Varies

This scholarship is available to undergraduate and graduate women studying journalism, English, media, communications and related fields. The Loreen Arbus Foundation celebrates the contributions and achievements of citizens with disabilities.

Everipedia International Women in Media Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: July 1, 2018

Applicants must be a senior in high school or currently enrolled in an undergraduate degree program. The scholarship's mission is to bring recognition to women who seek the truth.

Isabel M. Herson Scholarship in Education

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Scholarships are available to undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in a degree program for primary or secondary education. Students do not need to be members of the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority.

Lullellia W. Harrison Counseling Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in a degree program for counseling are eligible to apply. Students do not need to be Zeta Phi Beta Sorority members.

Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

The Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program awards scholarships to women who desire to teach science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) at the K-12 level.

Betty Rendel Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: June 1, 2018

Candidates must be female undergraduate students pursuing an undergraduate degree in government, economics or political science with two years of coursework successfully completed.

Adobe Research Women in Technology Scholarship

Amount: $10,000

Deadline: November 4, 2017

Applicants must currently be enrolled as an undergraduate student majoring in computer engineering, computer science or a closely related technical field. The female student must plan to be enrolled full-time for the upcoming academic year.

Woman's National Farm & Garden Association Scholarships

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

The Woman's National Farm & Garden Association scholarships help train future leaders in the arenas of farming, gardening, oceanic sciences, horticulture therapy and agriculture. Visit the website to see the current list of scholarships, award amounts and deadlines.

AREMA Presidental Spouse Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: December 9, 2017

Applicants have completed at least one quarter or semester in an accredited four or five year engineering undergraduate program. Applicants must women who have particular interest in railway engineering.

IIE UPS Scholarship for Female Students

Amount: $4,000

Deadline: November 15, 2017

Awards are granted to female undergraduate and graduate industrial engineering students who demonstrate academic excellence and campus leadership. Students must be enrolled in a North American accredited school that is recognized by IISE.

NEWH Women Leaders Scholarship

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: October 17, 2017

Awards are granted to female undergraduate and graduate industrial engineering students who demonstrate academic excellent and campus leadership. Students must be enrolled in a North American accredited school that is recognized by IISE.

Society of Women Engineers (SWE) Scholarships

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

To be eligible, candidates must be women pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree in Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) accredited engineering programs at SWE-approved colleges and universities, Computing Sciences Accreditation Board (CSAB) accredited computer science programs at ABET-accredited or SWE-approved institutions.

UPS Scholarship for Female Students

Amount: $4,000

Deadline: Varies

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Womanism is a social theory based on the discovery of the limitations of the second-wave feminism movement in regards to the history and experiences of black women, and other women of marginalized groups.[1] Writer, poet, and activist Alice Walker is credited with coining the term "womanist".[2] Since Walker's initial use, the term has evolved to envelop varied, and often opposing interpretations of conceptions such as feminism, men, and blackness.[3]

Theory[edit]

Womanist theory, while diverse, holds at its core that that both femininity and culture are equally as important to the woman's existence. In this conception one’s femininity cannot be stripped from the culture that it exists within.[3] At first glance, this seems similar to the thought process of third wave feminism, which embraced the concept of intersectionality. The difference lies in the valuation placed on intersectionality within the theoretical frameworks.[4] Womanism espouses the idea that the culture of the woman, which in this case is the focal point of intersection as opposed to class or some other characteristic, is not an element of her femininity, but rather is the lens through which femininity exists.[5] As such, a woman’s Blackness is not a component of her feminism; instead, her Blackness is the lens through which she understands her femininity.

In discussing womanist theory, one must acknowledge the racism that was perceived by black women in the feminist movement. This perception fuels two different conceptions of womanism's relationship with feminism. Some womanists believe that the experience of Black women will not be validated by feminists to be equal to the experience of White women because of the problematic way in which some feminists treated blackness throughout history.[6] As such, they do not see womanism as an extension of feminism, but rather as a theoretical framework which exists independent of feminist theory. This is a move from the thought of Black feminists who have carved their own space in feminism through academia and activism.[7]

However, not all womanists hold this view of feminism. The chronological first conception of womanism can be captured through Alice Walker's quotation "womanism is to feminism as purple is to lavender".[8] Under this description, the theories are intimately tied, with womanism as the broad umbrella under which feminism falls.

Theoretical origins[edit]

Alice Walker[edit]

Author and poet Alice Walker first used the term "womanist" in her work In Search of our Mother's Gardens: Womanist Prose. She explains that the term is derived from the southern folk expression "acting womanish."[9] The womanish girl exhibits willful, courageous, and outrageous behavior that is considered to be beyond the scope of societal norms. She then goes on to say that a womanist is:

"A woman who loves another woman, sexually and/ or non sexually. She appreciates and prefers women's culture, women's emotional flexibility...[she] is committed to the survival and wholeness of an entire people, male and female. Not a separatist, except periodically for health... loves the spirit.... loves struggle. Loves herself. Regardless."[10]

According to Walker, while feminism is incorporated into womanism, it is also instinctively pro-humankind. The focus of the theology is not on gender inequality, but race and class-based oppression.[11] She sees womanism as a theory/movement for the survival of the black race; a theory that takes into consideration the experiences of black women, black culture, black myths, spiritual life, and orality.[12] Walker's much cited phrase, "womanist is to feminist as purple is to lavender", suggests that feminism is a component beneath the much larger ideological umbrella of womanism.[9] Walker's definition also holds that womanists are universalists. This philosophy is further invoked by her metaphor of a garden where are all flowers bloom equally. A womanist is committed to the survival of both males and females and desires a world where men and women can coexist, while maintaining their cultural distinctiveness.[9] This inclusion of men provides Black women with an opportunity to address gender oppression without directly attacking men.[13] A third definition provided by Walker pertains to the sexuality of the women portrayed in her review of "Gifts of Power: The Writings of Rebecca Jackson". Here, she argues that the best term to describe Rebecca Jackson, a black Shaker who leaves her husband and goes on to live with her white Shaker companion, would be a womanist, because it is a word that affirms the connection to the world, regardless of sexuality.[11] The seemingly contrasting interpretations of womanism given by Walker validates the experiences of African-American women, while promoting a visionary perspective for the world based on said experiences.[9]

The short story "Everyday Use" by Alice Walker illustrates the voice of a black rural middle class woman through the relationship that a black woman shares with her two daughters Dee and Maggie.[14] Dee is spoiled and believes that her education and experiences make her better than her mother and her sister. On the other hand, Maggie envies her sister for her the beauty and arrogance that always gets her what she wants.[14] Historically, it has been very common for people of color to have their stories told by Caucasians. However, Walker attempts to break this tradition by having a black rural middle class woman tell the story of her relationships with her two daughters. An important part of the story occurs when the mother in "Everyday Use" states, "You've no doubt seen those TV shows where the child who has "made it" is confronted, as a surprise, by her own mother and father, tottering in weakly from backstage… Sometimes I dream a dream in which Dee and I are suddenly brought together on a TV program of this sort…".[14] Here the mother reminisces about a family experience that she has witnessed on television that she wishes she could have for herself. A heart-warming scene similar to the one that the mother witnessed on television does not take place when her daughter Dee comes to visit. Instead when Dee comes to visit the mother a rough, awkward tension-filled encounter slowly unfolds. Walker employs this story and its context to illustrate that a majority of womanism is characterized by black women telling their stories.

Much of Alice Walker’s progeny admits that while she is the creator of the term, Walker fails to consistently define the term and often contradicts herself.[15] At some points she portrays womanism as a more inclusive revision of Black feminism as it is not limited to Black women and focuses on the woman as a whole. Later in life she begins to regret this peace seeking and inclusive form of womanism due to the constant and consistent prejudice inflicted upon Black women, specifically, whose voices had yet to be validated by both White women and Black men.[16]

Clenora Hudson-Weems[edit]

Clenora Hudson-Weems is credited with coining the term Africana womanism. In 1995, the publication of her book, Africana Womanism: Reclaiming Ourselves sent shock waves through the Black nationalism community and established her as an independent thinker.[17] Hudson-Weems rejects feminism as the theology of Africana women, that is to say women of the African diaspora, because it is philosophically rooted in Eurocentric ideals.[11] She further asserts that it is impossible to incorporate the cultural perspectives of African women into the feminism ideal due to the history of slavery and racism in America. Furthermore, Weems rejects feminism’s characterization of the man as the enemy. She claims that this does not connect with Africana women as they do not see Africana men as the enemy. Instead the enemy is the oppressive force that subjugates the Africana man, woman, and child.[6] She claims that feminism’s masculine-feminine binary comes from a lack of additional hardship placed on women by their circumstances (i.e. race and socio-economic) as feminism was founded to appeal to upper-class White women.[6]

She also distances the Africana woman from Black feminism by demarcating the latter as distinctly African-American which is in turn distinctly western.[18] She also critiques Black feminism as a subset of feminism needing the validation of White feminists for their voices to be heard. She claims that feminism will never truly accept Black feminists, but instead relegate them to the fringes of the feminist movement. She ultimately claims that the matriarchs of the Black feminist movement will never be put into the same conversation as the matriarchs of the feminist movement. A large part of her work mirrors separatist Black Nationalist discourse, because of the focus on the collective rather than the individual as the forefront of her ideology. Hudson-Weems refutes Africana womanism as an addendum to feminism, and asserts that her ideology differs from Black feminism, Walker's womanism, and African womanism.[19]

Chikwenye Okonjo Ogunyemi[edit]

Chikwenye Okonjo Ogunyemi is a Nigerian literary critic. In 1985, she published the article "Womanism: The Dynamics of the Contemporary Black Female Novel in English", and described her interpretation of womanism. She asserts that the womanist vision is to answer the ultimate question of how to equitably share power among the races and between the sexes.[1] She arrived at her interpretation of the term independently of Alice Walker's definition, yet there are several overlaps between the two ideologies. Rather than citing gender inequality as the source of Black oppression, Ogunyemi takes a separatist stance much like Hudson-Weems, and dismisses the possibility of reconciliation of white feminists and black feminists on the grounds of the intractability of racism.[11] She uses a few examples of how feminists write about Blackness and African Blackness specifically to make salient the need for an African conception of womanism. These critiques include the use of Blackness as a tool to forward feminist ideals without also forwarding ideals related to blackness, the thought that western feminism is a tool which would work in African nations without acknowledging cultural norms and differences, and a co-opting of things that African women have been done for centuries before the western notion of feminism into western feminism.[20]

It is also important to note that Ogunyemi finds her conception of womanism's relationship with men at the cross roads of Walker’s and Hudson Weems’ conceptions. Walker’s expresses a communal opportunity for men while acknowledging how they can be dangerous to the womanist community.[15] While Hudson-Weems’ conception refuses to see the Africana man as an enemy, disregarding the harm that Africana men have imparted on to the community.[21]

Ideologies[edit]

Womanism has various definitions and interpretations. At its broadest definition, it is a universalist ideology for all women, regardless of color. A womanist is, according to Walker's 1979 story Coming Apart, an African-American heterosexual woman willing to utilize wisdom from African-American lesbians about how to improve sexual relationships and avoid being sexually objectified. In the context of men's destructive use of pornography and their exploitation of Black women as pornographic objects, a womanist is also committed to "the survival and wholeness of an entire people, male and female"[22] through confronting oppressive forces. Walker's much cited phrase, "womanist is to feminist as purple is to lavender" suggests that Walker considers feminism as a component of the wider ideological umbrella of womanism.[13] It focuses on the unique experiences, struggles, needs, and desires of not just Black women, but all women of color in addition to critically addressing the dynamics of the conflict between the mainstream feminist, the Black feminist, the African feminist, and the Africana womanist movement.[23] However, there is Black nationalist discourse prevalent within womanist work and for this reason scholars are divided between associating womanism with other similar ideologies such as Black feminism and Africana womanism or taking the stance that the three are inherently incompatible.[17]

Black feminism[edit]

Main article: Black feminism

The Black feminist movement was formed in response to the needs of women who were racially underrepresented by the Women's Movement and sexually oppressed by the Black Liberation Movement.[24] Black feminist scholars assert that African-American women are doubly disadvantaged in the social, economic, and political sphere, because they face discrimination on the basis of both race and gender.[25] Black women felt that their needs were being ignored by both movements and they struggled to identify with either based on race or gender. African-American women who use the term Black feminism attach a variety of interpretations to it.[26] One such interpretation is that Black feminism addresses the needs of African-American women that the feminism movement largely ignores. Feminism, as Black feminist theorist Pearl Cleage defines it, is "the belief that women are full human beings capable of participation and leadership in the full range of human activities—intellectual, political, social, sexual, spiritual, and economic".[13] With this definition, the feminist agenda can be said to encompass different issues ranging from political rights to educational opportunities within a global context.[13] The Black feminist agenda seeks to streamline these issues and focuses on those that are the most applicable to African-American women.

Africana womanism[edit]

Clenora Hudson-Weems's Africana womanism arose from a nationalist Africana studies concept. In Africana Womanism: Reclaiming Ourselves, Hudson-Weems explores the limitations of feminist theory and explains the ideas and activism of different African women who have contributed to womanist theory.[27] At its core, Africana womanism rejects feminism because it is set up in a way as to promote the issues of white women over the issues of Black women. Hudson-Weems argues that feminism will never be okay for black women due to the implications of slavery and prejudice.[11] She further asserts that the relationship between a Black man and a Black woman is significantly different from the relationship between a White man and a White woman, because the white woman battles the white man for subjugating her, but the black women battles all oppressive forces that subjugate her, her children, and the black man.[11][28] She further asserts that racism forced African-American men and African-American women to assume unconventional gender roles. In this context, the desire of mainstream feminism to dismantle traditional gender roles becomes inapplicable to the black experience. Unlike womanism,[17] Africana womanism is an ideology designed specifically with women of African descent in mind. It is grounded in African culture and focuses on the unique struggles, needs, and desires of African women. Based on this reasoning, Africana womanism posits race- and class-based oppression as far more significant than gender-based oppression.[11]

Womanist identity[edit]

In her introduction to The Womanist Reader, Layli Phillips contends that despite womanism's characterization, its main concern is not the black woman per se but rather the black woman is the point of origination for womanism. The basic tenets of womanism includes a strong self-authored spirit of activism that is especially evident in literature. Womanism has been such a polarizing movement for women that it has managed to step outside of the black community and extend itself into other non-white communities. "Purple is to Lavender" illustrates this through experiences that Dimpal Jain and Caroline Turner discuss.[29] Some scholars view womanism as a subcategory of feminism while others argue that it is actually the other way around. Purple is to Lavender explores the concept that womanism is to feminism as purple is to lavender, that feminism falls under the umbrella of womanism. In "Purple is to Lavender", Dimpal Jain and Caroline Turner discuss their experiences as non-white women in faculty.[29] They experienced a great deal of discrimination because they were minorities.[29] Jain is south Asian, while Caroline identifies as Filipino (Jain & Turner, pp. 67–70). They go on to describe the concept of "The Politics of Naming" which shapes the reason for why they prefer womanism as opposed to feminism (Jain & Turner, pp. 73–75). Jain states: "I knew that the term feminism was contested and that I did not like how it fit in my mouth. It was uncomfortable and scratchy, almost like a foreign substance that I was being forced to consume as the White women continued to smile with comforting looks of familiarity and pride" (Jain & Turner, p. 68). Here Turner makes it well known that she feels as though feminism is something that is forced upon her. She feels like she cannot completely identify with feminism. It is also important to note Jain's statement that, "The crux of the politics of naming is that names serve as identifiers and are not neutral when attached to social movements, ideas, and groups of people. Naming and labeling become politicized acts when they serve to determine any type of membership at a group level" (Jain & Turner, p. 73). This statement illustrates that if an individual identifies with feminism they may do so for particular reasons. However, those reasons may not be evident to the general public because of the connotation that the word feminism brings with it in terms of social movements, ideas, and groups of people. Individuals want something to identify with that expresses and supports their beliefs holistically. They want something that they can embrace to the fullest without any hint of regret. Similarly, Alice Walker even states: "I don't choose womanism because it is "better" than feminism...I choose it because I prefer the sound, the feel, the fit of it… because I share the old ethnic-American habit of offering society a new word when the old word it is using fails to describe behavior and change that only a new word can help it more fully see" (quoted in Jain & Turner, pp. 77–78).

For a majority of black women feminism has failed to accurately and holistically describe them as individuals to the world that surrounds them. They feel as though it takes something new that is not already bound to a predetermined master in order to capture this new movement. Womanism is something that Alice Walker can completely identify with without having second thoughts; it feels natural to her. Feminism does not. When distinguishing between feminism and womanism it is important to remember that many women find womanism easier to identify with. In addition, a key component of a womanist discourse is the role that spirituality and ethics has on ending the interlocking oppression of race, gender, and class that circumscribes the lives of African-American women.[30]

Literature and activism[edit]

Womanist literature and activism are two areas that are largely interpolated, with each having a considerable effect on the other. A major tenet of womanist literature and activism is the idea that Black activists and Black authors should separate themselves from the feminist ideology. This stems from assertions by Kalenda Eaton, Chikwenye Okonjo Ogunyemi, and numerous other womanist theologians that the goal of a womanist should be to promote the issues affecting not just Black women, but black men and other groups that have been subjected to discrimination or impotence.[31] In the words of Chikwenye Okonjo Ogunyemi, a white woman writer may be a feminist, but a black woman writer is likely to be a womanist. That is, she recognizes that along with battling for sexual equality, she must also incorporate race, economics, culture, and politics within her philosophy.[32] In Kalenda Eaton's, Womanism, Literature and the Black Community, black women writers are portrayed as both activists and visionaries for change in the Black Community following the Civil Rights Movement. She interweaves the historical events of African-American history with the development of Afro-Politico womanism in a bid to create a haven for Black female activism within the black community.[32] This Afro-Politico womanism veers from the traditional feminist goal of gender equality within a group and rather seeks to fight for the men and women whose civil rights are infringed upon. While Eaton takes the stance that Black women were largely excluded from the more prominent positions within the Black Movement, she argues that black women activists had the greatest effect in small-scale grassroots protests within their communities.[33] Using various characters from Toni Morrison's Song of Solomon, Alice Walker's Meridian, Toni Cade Bambara's The Salt Eaters, and Paule Marshall's The Chosen Place, the Timeless People as symbols of the various political agendas and issues that were prevalent within The Black Movement, Eaton draws upon the actions of the protagonists to illustrate solutions to the problems of disgruntlement and disorganization within the movement. Often the main task of these literary activists was to empower the impoverished masses—defined by Eaton as mainly Southern African-Americans, and they used the black middle class as a model for the possibility of social mobility within the African-American community.[32] A common theme within womanist literature is the failure of Black women writers to identify with feminist thought. Womanism becomes the concept that binds these novelists together.

Spirituality[edit]

Spirituality concerns the desire for a connection with the sacred, the unseen, the superhuman, or the nonexistent.[11]Patricia Hill Collins offers this definition:

"Spirituality is not merely a system of religious beliefs similar to logical systems of ideas. Rather, spirituality comprises articles of faith that provide a conceptual framework for living everyday life[13]

Whereby religion is an institutional mechanism, spirituality is a personal one. Unlike religion, spirituality cannot be abandoned or switched. It is an integral component of one's consciousness.[11] Womanist spirituality has six identifying characteristics—it is eclectic, synthetic, holistic, personal, visionary, and pragmatic. It draws from its resources and uses the summation of said resources to create a whole from multiple parts. Although it is ultimately defined by self, it envisions the larger picture and exists to solve problems and end injustice.[11] Emilie Townes, a womanist theologian, further asserts that womanist spirituality grows out of individual and communal reflection on African American faith and life. She explains that it is not grounded in the notion that spirituality is a force but rather a practice separate from who we are moment by moment.[34]" In a blaze of glory: womanist spirituality as social witness. Nashville: Abingdon Press. One of the main characteristics of womanism is its religious aspect, commonly thought of as Christian. This connotation paints the picture of spiritual black womanists being "church going" women that play a vital role in the operation of the church. In William's article "Womanist Spirituality Defined" she discusses how womanist spirituality is directly connected to an individual's experiences with God.[35] For instance, Williams declares, "the use of the term spirituality in this paper speaks of the everyday experiences of life and the way in which we relate to and interpret God at work in those experiences".[35] However, this connotation is disputed in Monica Coleman's Roundtable Discussion: "Must I Be a Womanist?" where she focuses on the shortcomings of womanism that result from how individuals have historically described womanism.[36] This holistic discussion of womanism is the result of a roundtable discussion. Coleman, who initiated the discussion, describes her thoughts on why she prefers black feminism as opposed to womanism, and she also discusses the limited scope that womanist religious scholarship embodies.[36] Coleman offers deep insight into the spiritual aspect of womanism when she declares that, "Intentionally or not, womanists have created a Christian hegemonic discourse within the field".[37] Here Coleman explains that the majority of womanists have painted the spiritual aspect of womanism to be spiritual in terms of Christianity. A specific example of this occurs in Walker's "Everyday Use", in the instance when the mother suddenly gains the courage to take a stand against her spoiled daughter as she declares, "When I looked at her like that something hit me in the top of my head and ran down to the soles of my feet. Just like when I'm in church and the spirit of God touches me and I get happy and shout".[14] This could be categorized as an example of the spiritual aspect of womanism because of the mention of relation to the Christian God. However, Coleman provides a counter example to this assumption when she states: "How, for example, might a womanist interpret the strength Tina Turner finds in Buddhism and the role her faith played in helping her to leave a violent relationship?"[37] Here Coleman pokes a hole in the pre-conceived notions of womanist scholarship. Coleman believes that the notorious sector of spirituality that womanism is most known for referring to is limited in its scope. Womanist religious scholarship has the ability to spread across a variety of paradigms and represent and support radical womanist spirituality. Considering womanism as a whole, it is also important to understand how it relates to feminism.

Ethics[edit]

Womanist ethics is a religious discipline that examines the ethical theories concerning human agency, action, and relationship. At the same time, it rejects social constructions that have neglected the existence of a group of women that have bared the brunt of injustice and oppression.[31] Its perspective is shaped by the theological experiences of African-American women.[31] With the use of analytic tools, the effect of race, class, gender, and sexuality on the individual and communal perspective is examined. Womanist ethic provides an alternative to Christian and other religious ethics while utilizing the elements of critique, description, and construction to assess the power imbalance and patriarchy that has been used to oppress women of color and their communities. The publication of Katie Cannon's The Emergence of Black Feminist Consciousness was the first to directly speak on womanist ethics. In this article, Cannon argues that the perspectives of Black women are largely ignored in various religious and academic discourses. Jacquelyn Grant expands on this point by asserting that Black women concurrently experience the three oppressive forces of racism, sexism, and classism.[31] Black feminist theory has been used by womanist ethics to explain the lack of participation of African-American women and men in academic discourse. Patricia Collins, credits this phenomenon to prevalence of white men determining what should or should not be considered valid discourse and urges for an alternative mode of producing knowledge that includes the core themes of Black female consciousness.[31]

Critiques[edit]

A major ongoing critique about womanist scholarship is the failure of many scholars to critically address homosexuality within the black community. Walker's protagonist in Coming Apart uses writings from two African-American lesbians, Audre Lorde and Louisah Teish, to support her argument that her husband should stop consuming pornography. She posts quotes from Audre Lorde above her kitchen sink. In Search of Our Mother's Garden states that a womanist is "a woman who loves another woman, sexually and/or non-sexually", yet despite Coming Apart and In Search of Our Mother's Garden, there is very little literature linking womanism to the lesbian and bisexual issue. Womanist theologian Renee Hill cites Christian influences as the cause of the lack of sympathy towards heterosexism and homophobia.[38] Black feminist critic Barbara Smith blames it on the Black community's reluctance to come to terms with homosexuality.[13] On the other hand, there is an increase in the criticism of heterosexism within womanist scholarship. Christian womanist theologian Pamela R. Lightsey, in her book Our Lives Matter: A Womanist Queer Theology (2015), writes, "To many people, we are still perverts. To many, the Black pervert is the most dangerous threat to the American ideal. Because the Black conservative bourgeoisie has joined the attack on our personhood, Black LGBTQ persons cannot allow the discourse to be controlled such that our existence within the Black community is denied or made invisible."[39] An additional critique lies within the ambivalence of womanism. In Africana womanism and African womanism, the term is associated with black nationalist discourse and the separatist movement. Patricia Collins argues that this exaggerates racial differences by promoting homogeneous identity. This is a sharp contrast to the universalist model of womanism that is championed by Walker. The continued controversy and dissidence within the various ideologies of womanism serves only to draw attention away from the goal of ending race and gender-based oppression.[17]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ abPhillips, L. (2006). The Womanist Reader, New York: Routledge.
  2. ^"Womanism - Dictionary definition of Womanism | Encyclopedia.com: FREE online dictionary". www.encyclopedia.com. Retrieved 2018-02-26. 
  3. ^ abPhillips, Layli (2006). The Womanist Reader. New York: Routledge. 
  4. ^Eaton, Kalenda (1965–1980). Womanism Literature, and the transformation of the Black community. New York: Routledge. 
  5. ^Gillman, L (2006). Unassimilable feminisms: reappraising feminist, womanist, and mestiza identity politics. Palgrave Macmillan. 
  6. ^ abcMazama, Ama (2003). The Afrocentric Paradigm. Trenton: Africa World Press. 
  7. ^James, Joy, ed. (2001). The Black feminist reader (Reprinted ed.). Malden, Mass. [u.a.]: Blackwell. ISBN 978-0631210078. 
  8. ^Walker, Alice (2005). In Search of Our Mothers' Gardens : Womanist Prose. London: Phoenix. ISBN 9780753819609. 
  9. ^ abcdThe Black Scholar, Vol. 26, No. 1, The Challenge of Blackness (Winter/Spring 1996).
  10. ^Walker, In Search of Our Mother's Garden's: Womanist Prose, p. xii.
  11. ^ abcdefghijMaparyan, Layli (2012). The Womanist Idea. New York, New York: Taylor & Francis. 
  12. ^ANIH, UCHENNA BETHRAND. "A Womanist Reading of Douceurs du bercail by Aminata Sow Fall". Matatu: Journal for African Culture & Society (41): 105–124. 
  13. ^ abcdefCollins, Patricia (1996). "What's In a Time: Womanism, Black Feminism, and Beyond". The Black Scholar. 26: 11. 
  14. ^ abcdWalker, "Everyday Use".
  15. ^ abDieke, Ikenna (1999). Critical Essays on Alice Walker. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press. 
  16. ^Winchell, Donna Haisty (1992). Alice Walker. New York: Twayne. 
  17. ^ abcdNikol G. Alexander-Floyd and Evelyn M. Simien. Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies, Vol. 27, No. 1 (2006), pp. 67-89. JSTOR 4137413
  18. ^Hubbard, LaRese (2010). "Anna Julia Cooper and Africana Womanism: Some Early Conceptual Contributions". Black Women, Gender & Families. 4 (2). 
  19. ^Russo, Stacy. "The Womanist Reader by Layli Phillips" (review), Feminist Teacher, 2009: 243-45. JSTOR.
  20. ^Ogunyemi, Chikwenye Okonjo (1996). Africa wo/man palava:the nigerian novel by woman. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 
  21. ^Johnson, N. "Theorizing female agency and empowerment through black women's literary writings (Clenora Hudson-Weems, Bettina Weiss)". Research In African Literatures. 39 (2). 
  22. ^Hogan, L. (1995), From Women's Experience to Feminist Theology, Sheffield, England: Sheffield Academic Press,1995. Print.
  23. ^
Unification is a key cornerstone of womanist ideology.

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