Date of Award

Spring 2019

Author's School

College of Arts & Sciences

Author's Program

African and African American Studies

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (A.B.)




This thesis examines the effects of misogynoir— a specific form of oppression Black women experience due to the intersection of being deemed inferior in both race and gender— on the development of Black girlhood. In Black feminist theory and criticism, though, the language used often subordinates Black girls and does not ascribe adequate import to their experiences. Using the Black girl bildungsroman, specifically The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison and Another Brooklyn by Jacqueline Woodson, as a way to survey the effects of misogynoir and the significance of homosocial, intraracial bonding, I argue that Black feminisms should center Black girlhood in their theories in order to understand the position of Black girls in American social structures more thoroughly. With a consideration of Ntozake Shange’s For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When the Rainbow is Enuf, I also argue that an in-depth analysis of Black girlhood is necessary in order to understand the complexities Black womanhood.


Dr. Rafia Zafar

Additional Advisors

Dr. Long Le-Khac, Dr. William Maxwell