Preaching the Blues : Black Feminist Performance in Lynching Plays book cover
1st Edition

Preaching the Blues
Black Feminist Performance in Lynching Plays

ISBN 9781032088495
Published June 30, 2021 by Routledge
148 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Preaching the Blues: Black Feminist Performance in Lynching Plays examines several lynching plays to foreground black women’s performances as non-normative subjects who challenge white supremacist ideology.

Maisha S. Akbar re-maps the study of lynching drama by examining plays that are contingent upon race-based settings in black households versus white households. She also discusses performances of lynching plays at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in the South and reviews lynching plays closely tied to black school campuses. By focusing on current examples and impacts of lynching plays in the public sphere, this book grounds this historical form of theatre in the present day with depth and relevance.

Of interest to scholars and students of both general Theatre and Performance Studies, and of African American Theatre and Drama, Preaching the Blues foregrounds the importance of black feminist artists in lynching culture and interdisciplinary scholarship.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements  Introduction  1. A Blueswoman Matters: Black Women’s Feminisms in Anti-Lynching Plays  2. Saving White Face: Examining Anti-Lynching Plays Set in White Households  3. Sketches from a Black Feminist Professor’s Notebook: Staging Lynching Plays at an Historically Black College and University (HBCU) in the South  Epilogue  Index

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Maisha S. Akbar is Associate Professor of Theatre and Performance Studies at Fort Valley State University, where she is founding coordinator of a Theatre and Performance Studies academic curriculum. Dr. Akbar’s research interests include black feminist performance studies and psychoanalysis. More information on her work can be found at