Girl Gurl Grrrl: On Womanhood and Belonging in the Age of Black Girl Magic by Kenya Hunt is a collection of essays about what it means to be black, a woman, a mother, and a global citizen in today's ever-changing world. The essays are provocative, humorous, and, at times, heartbreaking.
Quick Review: Solid 4 star read! I really enjoyed most of the essays. Many made me think and reflect, and others taught me something new! So, I recommend this to almost everyone. The writing is accessible and engaging.
In this post, I wanted to share some of those reflections I mentioned:
In “chapter 4” Hunt discusses how Blank Panther and its glorious success could be seen as the spark of another Black Renaissance. Black communities are craving even more of Black art made for, about, and by us. Everyone wants to see themselves in spaces they haven’t been but deserve to be. I would say, we’re seeing the spark again with The Little Mermaid reboot.
In chapter 8, “Motherhood,” Hunt is incredibly vulnerable about her experiences with multiple miscarriages. We don’t speak nearly enough about the difficulty of pregnancy, miscarriages, giving birth etc. or the callous care many Black women encounter in the medical system. As I consider having children soon-ish, I can’t help my terror…
A lot of time, we discuss the African diaspora focused on the Americans, but what about the irrevocable impact of colonialism on the continent? Even as a Gambian-American, I’ve always been saddened by my lack of knowledge of Africa and its history outside of the slave trade. The land of my parents and ancestors feels foreign and that breaks my heart . . . (Chapter 13)
In “Bad B*tches,” Hunt offers an interesting proposal. As Black Women, we fight to excel because we have to be twice as good to get half as far (prob why we’re the most educated group in America), but what if we want to be ordinary. Hunt argues that just being as we are (in a world that wants to mold us otherwise) makes us “bad b*tches and I kind of love that. Especially as I read this chapter laying about in sweats and eating Jalapeno chips and my nails looking crazy.
Finally, Hunt explains how modern activism forces us through cycles of outrage and weak action that doesn’t truly lead to change. True activism, she argues, is consistence and preparation to play the long game. That’s why it’s best to choose our lanes and stick to 'em diligently. Despite social media police wanting everyone to be “appropriately” mad about everything “performatively.” No one has enough spoons for that.
Have you read Girl Gurl Grrrl? What did you think?