Anna J. Cooper – A Voice from the South
In her book, A Voice from the South, Anna J. Cooper expressly addresses two issues: the participation of women in American society and America’s race problem. These are two issues very close to Cooper as an African American woman herself and she claims to speak for all African American women on these points. She argues that for America to be a truly democratic country that has freedoms for all people, it must have participation by women and blacks.
The first half of her book is concerned with the role of women in society. She compares a healthy family structure to a democratic society. In both cases, men and women have distinct roles they must fulfill in order to create a balanced, healthy environment. Since political participation for women was limited at the time of Cooper’s writing, she argued that not only were women suffering, but so was all of society. She argued that women’s sensitivity to emotion and intuition and their nurturing nature would balance out society that was controlled by aggressive and reason-oriented men. She argues that men and women are equals but their responsibilities to society are distinctive.
In the second half of her book, Cooper addresses America’s race problem. She argues that, yes, there is a problem concerning race in America and the only way that it will eventually be solved is by the power and grace of God. Until He intervenes, Americans must stand ready and be prepared to go to battle with racism. She argues that racism is un-Christian in practice although it may be justified by certain ideologies. The only measure of Christianity...