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THIS BRIDGE

MY CALTED BACK WRITINGSBY RADICAL WOMENOF

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EDITORS: -

MORAGA CHERRIE ANT,ALDUA GTORIA


FOREWORD:

BAMBARA TONICADE
KITCHEN TABLE: Women of Color Press
New York

C o p y r i g h t o I 9 8 1 . 1 9 8 - lb y C h e r r i e M o r a g a a n d G l o r i a A n z a l d r i a . All rights reserved.-Nopart of this book may be reproducedwithout permissionin writing from the publisher.Publishedin the United Statesby Kitchen Table: Women of Color press, Post Office Box 908, Latham. New York l2l10-0908. Originally published bv Peresphone Press,Inc. Watertown, Massachusetts, 1981. Also by Cherrie Moraga Cuentos: Stories hy Latinas, ed. with Alma G6mez and Mariana Romo-Carmona. K i t c h e n T a b l e : W o m e n o f C o l o r P r e s s .1 9 8 3 . Loving in the ll/ar Years:Lo Que Nunta Pasd Por Sus lcbios. South End Press, 1983. C o v e r a n d t e x t i l l u s t r a t i o n sb y J o h n e t t a T i n k e r . Cover designby Maria von Brincken. T e x t d e s i g nb y P a t M c G l o i n . T y p e s e ti n G a r t h G r a p h i c b y S e r i f & S a n s , l n c . , B o s t o n , M a s s . S e c o n d E d i t i o n T y p e s e tb y S u s a n L . Y u n g SecondEdition, Sixth Printine. ISBN 0-913175-03-X, paper. ISBN 0-913175-18-8, cloth.

para l-arvretlcev Elvira Nloragut An-raliaLl arcia Ar-rzalciua t v p a r a t o t l a s) l u e s t r a st r : r t i r e s por lir obt'ciicncia rla ir-rsttrrtcciiitt enscilalrtl t:ilasttcts clLre
IOT Eh'ira Nloraga L:ts'rencc etllcl - \ r n ; r l i i rC l r . i a A r r z a l t l r - r . l J I r r li r r l a l l r ) u r l ) l r ) t l 1 c r 5 for the obeciience atrcl rebelliorr t t h e l ' t a r . r g l - ru s .

This bridge called my back : writings by radical women of color / editors,Cherrie Moraga, Gloria Anzaldfa ; foreword,Toni Cade Bambara. - lst ed. - Watertown, Mass. : Persephone Press, c1981.1*1
xxvi,261 p. : ill. ',22 cm. Bibliography: p. 251-261. ISBN 0-930436-10-5 (pbk.) : $9.95 l. Feminism-Literary collections. 2. Radicalism-Literary collections. 3. Minority women-United States-Literary collections. 4. American literature -Women authors. 5. American literature-Minority authors. 6. American literature-20th century. I. Moraga, Cherrie II. Anzaldria, Gloria.

PS509.F44T5 810 i8'09287-dcl9

81-168894
AACR 2 MARC

Library of Congress [r88]rev [*]-2nd ed. - Latham, NY: Kitchen Table,Womenof Color Press.c1983.
C H R Y S T O S : " C e r e m o n y f o r C o m p l e t i n g a P o e t r y R e a d i n g , " c o p y r i g h t o 1 9 7 6b y C h r y s t o s ,f i r s t a p p e a r e di n W o m a n s p i r i t , e p r i n r e db y p e r m i s s i o n C O M B A H E E R M R . r COLLECTM: "A Black Feminist Statemenr," first appeared in Capitalist Parriartht' a n d r h e C a s e f o r S o c i a l i s rF e m i n i s m .Z i l t a h R . E i s e n : i e i n .e d . ( N e * Y o r k : M o n r h i v R ^ e v i e w r e s s ,I 9 7 9 ) , r e p r i n t e d b y p e r m i s s i o n .D O R I S D A V E N P O R T : " T h e P a t h o l o g y P of Racism," copyright nl lS89 !V Doris Davenport, first appeared in Spinning O-li, r e p _ r i n t eb _ y e r m i s s i o n . A T T I E G O S S E T T : " b i l l i e l i v e s !b i l l i e l i v e s ! , "c o p y r i g h to 1 9 8 0 d p H b y H a t t i e G o s s e t t ; w h o r o l d y o u a n y b o d yw a n t st o h e a rf r o m y o u ?y o u a i n ' i n o t h i n g b u r a " b l a c k w o m ^ a n i , " o p y r i g h ro 1 9 8 0 y H a t r i e G o s s e t t . A R Y H O P E L E E : " o n n o t b e i n g , " c b M c o - p y r i g h t , o _ 1 9 b y M a r y H o p e L e e , f i r s t a p p e a r e d n C a l l a l o o ,r e p r i n t e db y p e r m i s s i o n . 79 i AUDRE LORDE: "An Open Letter to Mdry Daly," copyrighto'1980by Audre Lorde, I t r s t a p p e a r e di n T o p R o n k i n g , r e p r i n t e db y p e r m i s s i o n " T h e M a s t e r ' sT o o l s W i l l N e v e r . D i s m a n t l e t h e M a s t e r ' s H o u s e , " c o p y r i g h t o 1 9 8 0b y A u d r e L o r d e . P A T P A R K E R : " R e v l o u t i o n : I t ' s N o t N e a t o r P r e t t y o r Q u i c k , " c o p y r i g h r o 1 9 8 0b y P a r P a r k e r .K A T E RUSHIN: "The Bridge Poem, copyrighto l98l'by-Donna K. hushin. MITSUYE Y A M A D A : " l n v i s i b i l i i y i s a n U n n a i u r a l D i s a s r e r , "c o p y r i g h to 1 9 7 9 y B r i d g e :A n A s t o n b A m e r t t e n P e r s p e t t i v e ,r e p r i n t e d b y p e r m i s s i o n .

REFUGEESOF A WORLD ON FIRE


Foreword to the Second Edition
Three years later, I try to imagine the newcomer to Bridge. What do you need to know? I have heard from people that the book has helped change some minds {and hopefully hearts as well), but it has changed no one more than the women who contributed to its existence. It has changed my life so fundamentally that today I feel almost the worst person to introduce you to Bridge, to see it through fresh eyes. Rather your introduction or even reintroduction should come from the voices of the women of color who first discoveredthe book: The woman writers seemedto be speakingto me, and they actually understood what I was going through. Many of you put into words feelings I have had that I h a d n o w a y o f e x p r e s s i n g . . . T h ew r i t i n g s j u s t i f i e d some of my thoughts telling me I had a right to feel as I did. It is remarkable to me that one book could have such an impact. So many feelings were brought alive i n s i d em e . * For the new reader, as well as for the people who may be looking at Bridge for the second or third time, I feel the need to speak to what I think of the book some three years later. Today I leaf through the pagesof Bridge and imagine all the things so many of us would say differently or better-watching my own life and the lives of these writers/activistsgrow in commitment to whatever it is we term "our work." We are getting older, as is our movement. I think that were Bridge to have been conceived of in 1983, as opposed to 1979, it would speak much more directly now to the relations between women and men of color, both gay and heterosexual.In 1979, responseto a number of earlier writings by women of color which in the name of feminism focused almost exclusively on relations between the sexes,Bridge intended to make a c l e a n b r e a k f r o m t h a t p h e n o m e n o n . * I n s t e a d ,w e c r e a t e d a b o o k \)omen. which concentratedon relationshipsbetween
*Alma Ayala, a nineteen-year-old uerto Rican, from a letter to Gloria Anzaldua. P

When Persephone press, Inc., a white women,s press of Watertown, Massachuseus and the original pubrishersof Bridge,..ur.d op.ruii", i" ,rr. Spring of 1983,this book had alreadygone our of piint. Aft.. ;;; ;;nit , of negotiations, the co-editorswere finiliy able to retrievecontrol of their book, whereupon Kitchen Table: women of color press of N.* vo.t-ug...l ;; ..publish it. The following, then, is the second edition of rhis Britrge Caretr M.r,Bacx, conceivedof and produced entirely by women of color.

this right has been established,horvever,once a rnovement Or-rce has provided some basic consciousnessso that heterosexisrnand sexism are not consideredthe normal course of events, 'uve are in a lnuch stronger position to anaiyze our reiations u'ith the men of our families and communities fronr a position of power rather than conrpromise.A Bridge of 1983 could do this. {I am particularly e n c o u r a g e db y t h e o r g a n i z i n g p o t e n t i a l b e t w e e n T h i r d W o r l d lesbiansand gay men in our comr)runitiesof color.) The second major difference a 1983 version of Bridge rvoulcl prorride is ihat it would be much more international in perspective. Although the heart ol Bridgeremains the same, the impetus to forge iir-rks with women of color from every region grows nrore and more urgent as tl.renumber of recentll'-inrmigratedpeople of color in the U.S. grows in enonnous proportions, as lve begin to see ourselvesall as refugeesof a world on fire: The U.S. is training troops in Honduras to overthrort,the Nicaraguan people'sgovernment. Human rights violations are occurring on a lrassive scalein Guatenrala and El Salvador{and as in this country those most hardhit are often the indigenouspeoplesof those landsJ. Pinochet escalates political repressionin Chile. The U.S. invades Grenada. Apartheid continues to bleed South Africa. T h o u s a n d s o f u n a r m e d p e o p l e a r e s l a u g h t e r e d i n B e i r r . r tb y Christian rnilitiamen and Israeli soldiers. Aquino is assassinated the Philippine governrnent. b1' And in the U.S.? The Reagan adrninistration daily draii-rsus oi nearly evcry political gain rnade bv the feminist, Third World and anti-war u,ork of tl-re late 60's and earl1'70's. The question and challenge for Third \{orld ferninism rernains: what are the particular conditions of oppressionsuffered by rvonren o f c o l o r i n e a c h o f t h e s e s i t u a t i o n s ?H o w h a s t h e s p e c i a l c i r c u m stances her pain been overlookedby Third \\brld mover.nents, of solidarity groulls, "international ferninists?"Holv have the childlen suffered?How do u,e organizeourselvesto snrvive this war? To keen our farnilies,our bodies, our spirits intact?
* G , r l d i t i ( r / / s . " i v c . ' l ' h t B l o r ' . t l 1 ' o n r . ' n l ss s r r ee d . b v L o r r a i n c I l e t h e l a n d l l a r b a r a ] l S r : r i l lirr r l r 7 . r r r r ' , r r r r ; r j , c;x c c l , t i o n '

irr owrl lin-ritations' ti-reface Sometimesin the face of my own/our of j doubt even the significance- books' of such rvorld-wide suffering' so many people who^have tried Surely this is the sa'ne predlcametlt found themselves in- 2Cara Q cara to Lrsewords u, *"upo'-" have palabras?* This is especially true de conel enemigo quZ-valen mis who know full rvell otlr writings for Third World women wriiers' we g:ew tip r't'ith' Sometimes ' seldom directl;reach the people you're dunrping your words,into a knowing this makes 1'ot' t""i like But we contillue to write To the very deep and very dark hole' the peopie they touch' We even people of color we do reach and for rvhom books have been as comwrite to those classesof people r'vill finally' r't'ewrite to anyone who mon to their lives as bt"ucl ior currents of op"n {even if only a crack) to the listen lvith trr"i. "u., change arotrnd them -,- ^.^ri.,.icr l-otier ultimate optinrist' believing T I t e p o l i t i c a ] r ' r ' r i t e r ,t h e n ' i s t h e as using.rvorcls one way to try and people are capableof change and keeps us of" ntt lives' A privatism which penetrate the privatis'-''t politically useless' renders us back and arvay from each other' rvhich horvever'I am ieeling rnore discouraged oi At the tir.r.re tttis writlng unified Third World feminist movethan optimistic. The tlt"u'i of a of it when rve first embarked rnent in this country;t ;" conceived more possiblesomehow' because ." ,ft" f ."j.ct of thii book' seemed in the ranks begging to take as of yei, less tried. ti *a' stiil rvaiting I have learned that Third World forn and hold ln ti''eiast three years of easl'political framework that feminism cioesnot proviciettre i<ind llatdroves' We are not so rnuclt a women of color are running to ir-r togetherout of politihave come ural" affinity group, o""o'1ll"" rvho iras proved to be fne idea oi fn"a World feminism cal necessity. than between real live a book much easier U"tnt'""n the covers o[ and' recognizingthat are ;t;;; it;"tt that divide us; \vomen. There qrite re"ote. Still, the need that dreanr at times see'r fact can n.rake forabroad-basectu'S'womenofcolormoverrtentcirpableofspanhas never been so strong' ,ti"g tr"ta"ts of nation and ethnicity movetnent that will not constantly in If we are interesteci builclinga tl.renwe nust br'rild frorr the inbe subverted Uy i,''t""lut differe"nces' to terms u'ith the sufsideout, r-rotthe ottt""tuy arouncl'-Coming arvay from our own' ferlng of others has uever meant looking must acknowledge that to change And, lve n-rustlook cleeply'We sometitrtesour tnost the rt'orld, ,"" t-,ut'"io t}to"g" ourselves--even As This Bridge Catted M>' Back is cherished bloct-f'atci co'-'uiitio'''t is oltr political vision. lt is subject r r o t r , t , r i t t e nt n S t o n e , n e i t h e r to change.
*Face ttr face *tth enemr' uhat good arc nl1 uordsl

I must confessI hate the thought of this. Change don't come easy. For anyone. But this state of war we live in, this world on fire provides us with no other choice. If the irnage of the bridge can bind us together, I think it does so most powerfully in the words of Donna Kate Rushin, when she insists: " s t r e t c h . . . o rd i e . " Cherrie Moraga October 1983

Forevtord to the SecondEdition


2Qu6 hacer de aqui y c6mo? lWhat to do fiom hereqnd how?) Perhaps like me you are tired of suffering and talking about s u f f e r i n g , e s t d s h a s t a e l p e s c u e z o d e s u f r i n - r i e n t o ,d e c o n t a r l a s lltrvias de sangre pero no has iluvias de flores lup to ),our neck witlt suffering,of countirtgthe rains of blood but not the rains of flowers). Like me you may be tired of making a tragedy of our iives. A abandonar ese autocanibalismo: coraje, tristeza, niiedo (1el's abandon this autocannibalism:rage, sadness, fear). Basta de gritar contra el viento-toda palabra es ruido si no est6 acompaiada de acci6n lenough of shoutittgagainst the v,ind-all words are noise if not accompanied ith action).Dejer-nos e hablar hasta que w d lraganros palabra lunrinosa y activa llet'swork rrct talk, let'ssaynothtrry la until we've made the world lumbtousand active). Basta de pasividad y de pasatiempornientras esperalros al novio, a Ia novia, a la Diosa, o a l a R e v o l u c i 5 n l e n o u g h o f p a s s i v i t y a n d p a s s i r t gt i m e w h i l e w a i t i n g f o r t h e b o y f r i e n d , t h e g i r l f r i e r t d , t h e G o d d e s s ,o r t h e R e v o l u t i o n ) .N o n o s p o d e r n o s q n e d a r p a r a d a s c o n I o s b r a z o s cruzados en medio del puente lwe can't afford to stop in the ntiddle of tlrc bridge u,ith arms crossed). Ancl yet to act is not enough. Many of us are learning to sit perfectly still, to sensethe presence of the Soul and cornmune rvitl-r Her. We are beginning to realizethat lve are not u'hoily at the utercy of circumstance,nor are our lives cornpletelvout of our hands. T}.rat posture as victirns rve will be victirhs, that iropelessnessis if r,n'e s u i c i d e , t l - r a ts e l f - a t t a c k s s t o p u s o n o u r t r a c k s . W e a r e s l o r , r - l v m o v i n g p a s t t h e r e s i s t a n c ew i t h i n , l e a v i n g b e h i n d t l " r ed e f e a t e d images. We have conre to realize that rve are not alone in our struggles nor separate nor autononlous but that r.l'e-u'hite black straight queer female lnale-are connected ancl interdependent.We are each accountablefor what is happening dolr.n the street, south of the border or across the sea. And those of us who have nore o f a n y t h i n g : b r a i n s , p h y s i c a l s t r e n g t h ,p o l i t i c a l p o w e r , s p i r i t u al energies,are learning to share them rvith those that don't have. We are iearning to depend more and more on our o\\'n sources for survivai, learning not to let the weigirt of this burden, the bridge, break our backs. Haven't we always borne jugs of rvater,child r e n , p o v e r t y ? W h y n o t l e a r n t o b e a r b a s k e t so f h o p e , l o v e , s e l f -

nourishment and to steP lightlY? a salir de las sornbras; With This Brid.ge...n"-ot iomenzado y costurnbres opresivas y a hemos comenzado a reventar rutina a acarrear con Orgullo la u.r"r-rtu.Ios tabues; hemos comenzado concieuciaslwe have begurt 'we tarea de deshelar corazonesy cambiar -to have begun to break with routines ,ome out oi the shadows; 'have commensed taboos; we -ro and oppressivecustomsand to discard hearts a.nd c.hanging ,oiry with pride the task of thawing y Ia Mu;eres, a no dejar que el peligro del viaje consciousness/. adelante y a mirar hacia inmensidad del territorio nos asuste-a of the e l m o r r te l W o m e n , l e t ' s n o t l e t t h e d a n g e r ub.i, puuo en look forward of journey and the vasli?ess the territory scare us-Iet's 'or,a hace in thesewoods) Caminante' no hay puetltes' se opnn paths builds them as bridges' one o.r"tt", al andar lVoyager,there are no ine watks). Contigo, Gloria Anzaldira

Foreword
How I cherish this collection of cables, esoesses, conjurations and fusile missles.Its motive force. Its gathering-us-in-ness. midwifery Its of mutually wise understandings.Its promise of autonorny and community. And its pledge of an abundant life for us all. On time. That is to say - overdue, given the times. ("Arrogance rising, moon in oppression, sun in destruction" Cameron.) Blackfoot arnigaNisei hermana Down Home Up Souf Sistuh sisterEl Barrio suburbia Korean The Bronx Lakota Menominee CubanaChinesePuertoriquenareservationChicana campafrera and letters testimonials poems interviews essays journal entries sharing sistersof the yam Sistersof the rice sisters of the corn Sistersof the plantain putting in telecallsto each other. A n d w e ' r ea l l o n t h e [ i n e . Now that we've begun to break the silence and begun to break through the diabolically erectedbarriers and can hear each other and seeeach other, we can sit down with trust and break bread together. Rise up and break our chains as well. For though the initiai motive of severalsiter/ritershere may have been to proiest, complain or explain to white feminist would-be allies that there are other ties and visions that bind, prior allegiances and priorities that supercedetheir invitations to coalesce their terms ("Assimilation on within a solely westerneuropean herstory is not acceptable"- Lorde) the processof examining that would-be alliance awakens us to new tasks {,,Wehave a lot more to concentrate on beside the pathology of white wimmin,, - davenport) and a new connection: a new setof recognitions: a new site of accountability: a new sortrce power: of US US US US

And the possibilitiesintuited here or alluded to there or called forth in various piecesin flat out talking in tongues- the possibility of several million women refuting the numbers game inherent in,,mi'ority,,,the possibility of denouncing the insulated/orchestrated conflict game of divide and conquer - through the fashioningof potent'etworks of all the daughters of the ancient mother cultures is awesome, mighty, a gloriouslife work. This Bridge lays down the planks to crossover on to a new place where stooped labor cramped quartered down pressed

and caged up combatants can straighten the spine and expand the lungs and make the vision manifest ("The dream is real, my friends' The failure to realize it is the only unreality." StreetPreacherin The SqltEaters\. This Bridge documents particular rites of passage.Coming of age and coming to terms r,t'ithcommr.rnity race,group, ciass,gender'self - its expectations, And coming to grips with its supports,and lessons. perversions- racism, prejudice, elitism, misogyny, homophobia, and strugmurder. And coming to terms with the incorporation of disease, gling io overthrow the internal colonial/pro-racist ioyalties-color/ hue/hair castewithin the household,power perversitiesengagedin accommodationto and colunder the guiseof "personalrelationships," -ambush and amnesiaand murder. And coming to laboration with self grips r,r'iththose faise awakeningstoo that give use easeas we substiiute a rnilitant mouth for a radical politic, delaying our true coming of principled combatants. age as comrnitted, cotr-rpetent, There is more than a hint in these pages that too many of us still a equate tone with substance, hot eye with clear vision, and congratulate ourselvesfor our political maturity. For of course it takes more than pique to unite our wrath {"the capacity of heat to change the shapeof thrngs" Moragal and to wrest power from thosewho have it and abuse it, to reclaim our ancient powers lying dormant with neglect ("i wanna ask billie to teach us how to use our voices like she used hers on that old 78 record"-gossett),and create new powers in arenas where they r]ever before existed.And of course it takes more than the self-disclosureand the bold glimpse of each others'[ife documents to make tl-regrand resolve to fearlessly work toward potent meshings.Takesmore than a rinsed lens to face unblinkingly the particular twists of the divide and conquer tactics of this moment: the practice of withdrarving small businessloans from the Puerto Rican of grocer in favor of the South Korean wig sl-rop, stripping from Black students the Martin Luther King scholarship fund fought for and delivering thosefunds up to SouthVietnameseor white Cubans or any other group the government has made a commitment to in its greedy other betterand teacheach grab for empire. We have got to know eacl'r radical ("seeing other our \ /ays,our views, if we're to remove the scales differenceswhere they don't exist and not seeingthem when they are and get the work done. critical"- Quintanales\ This Bridge can get us there. Can coax us into the habit of listening to each other and learning each other's ways of seeing and being' Of as hearing each other as we heard each other in Pat Lee'sFreshtones, we heard each other in Pat Jonesand Faye Chiang, et. al.'s Ordinary

Wonren,as we heard each other in Fran Beale'sThird World Women's Alliance newspaper. As we heard each other over the years in snatched time moments in hallways and conference corridors, caucusingbetlt,eensets.As we heard each other in those spiit second interfacingsof yours and mine and hers student union meetings.As we heard each other in that rainbow attempt under the auspicesof IFCO years ago. And way before that when Chinese, Mexican, and African women in this country saluted each other's attempts to fornt protective leagues. And before that r,r,henNew Orleans African women and Yarnassee and Yanracrow worren went into the swamps to meet with Filipino r,r'ives "draftees" of and "defectors" during the so called Frer-rch and Indian War. And rvhen members of the maroon communities and wornen of the long lodgeheid council togetherln'hile the SeminoleWars raged.And way way before that, before the breaking of the land mass when we mothers of the yam, of the rice, of the maize, of the plantain sat together in a circle, staring into the camp fire, the answers in our laps, knowing holv to focus. . . Quite frankly, This Bridge needs no Foreword. It is the Aftenr,ard that'll count. The coalitions of women determined to be a danser to our enernies,as June Jordan would put it. The r.r'illto be dangerous ("askbillie so \A/ecan learn how to have those bigtime bigdaddies jumping outta windows and otherwise offing theyselves ir.rdroves" -gossell). And the contracts we creative combatants lr.iil make to rnutually care and cure each otiier into n'holesorneness. And the blueprints we will drarn'up of the new order we will rnake mar-rifest. And the personalunction we r,vill discoverin the rnirror, in the dreatns,or or.r the path acrossThis Bridge.The r,r'ork: make revoiution irresistible. To

Conterrts
lore$'oro l o n l L a d eb a m o 1 r ( t Preface CherrieMoraga The Bridge Poem Donna Kate Rttshirt Introduction ClrcrrieMoraga andGloria Anzaldila
vl xl11

XXI

xxlll

Children Passing in the Streets The Roots of Our Radicalism


When I Was Grort'ing UP Nellie Wong on not bein marytlPPn 1nn For the Color of MY Mother CherrieMoraga I Am What I Am Morales Rosario D r e a m so f V i o l e n c e Littlebear lttraomi He Salv Cftrystos

L2
T4
lr)

l8

Blessings, Toni Cade Barnbara Novelist Bambaraand interviewer Kalamu Ya Salaamu'ere discussing a call she made in The SaltEatersthrough The Seven Sisters,a rnultic u l t u r a l ,r n u l t i - m e d i aa r t s t r o u p e ,a c a l l t o u n i t e o u r w r a t h , o r . r r , i s i o n , our powers. Kalamu: Do you thirrk fiction is the most effective rval' to do this? No. The rnost effective way to do it, is to do itl*
*"ln Searcli of thc Nftrtht-rTonguL-: [ntcrvier.r' it]r Al) rl Toni Cade Bantbara' lFrrst ltrirrl.1 / r r r r r r , r lF a l i 1 9 8 0 1 .

Entering the Lives of Others Theory in the Flesh


Wonder Womar-r GennyLnrt La Giiera Cherrie lvloraga Invisibility is an Unnatural Disaster: Reflectionsof an Asian Americatl Wornat't Mitsuye Yamada It's In NIy Blood, M,v FaceMy Mother's \bice, The Wav I Sr't'eat Anita \,hlerio

z5
11

35

41

^L-.

"Gee,You Don't SeernLike An Indian From the Reservation" BarbaraCameron ". . . And Even Fide] Can'tChangeThatl" Aur<traLevinsMorales I Walk in the History of My People Chrystos

57

And When You Leave, Thke Your Pictures With You Racism in the Women's Movement
And When You Leave,Take Your PicturesWith You Jo Caruillo B e y o n dt h e C l i f f s o f A b i q u i u -lo Carrillo I Don't Understar.rd ThoseWho Have Turned Away From Me Chrystos Asian PacificAmerican Wonten and Feminisrn Mitsuve Yam<tda Millicent Fredericks GabrielleDaniels - Btrt I Know You, American Woman Iudit Moschkoviclt The Pathologyof Racism:A Conversation with Third \\brld Wimnrin doris davenport We're All in the Same Boat RosarioMorales An Open Letter to Mary Daly Audre Lorde The Master'sTooisWill Never Disruantle the Master'sHouse Audre Lorde

Act of Resistance Lesbianism:Ar-r CherylClarke Lowriding Through the Women'sMovement BarbaraNoda Letter to Ma Merle Woo I Come With No Illusions Mirtha Quintanales I Paid Very Hard for My Immigrant Ignorance Mirtha Quintanales Earth-Lover, Survivor, Musician Naomi Littlebear

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138 1.10 148
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65 68 71

Speaking in Tongues The Third World Woman Writer


A Speakingin Tongues: Letter To Third World Women Writers Gloria Anzaldria who told you anybody wants to hear from you? you ain't nothing but a black woman! hattie gossett In Searchof the Selfas Hero: Night Confetti of Voiceson New Year's Nellie Wong Chicana'sFeminist Literature: A Re-vision Through Malintzinlor Malintzin: Putting FleshBack on the Object Norma Alarcon Ceremony for Completing a Poetry Reading C&ry'5165 165

175

79

177

85 91

182 191

98

El Mundo Zurdo The Vision


Give Me Back Chryslos La Prieta GloriaArualdua A BIack FerninistStatement c Conrbahee er Colle tive Riv The Welder Chenle Moraga 1.97 198

Between the Lines On Culture, Class,and Homophobia


The Otl-rer Heritage Rosario Morales billie livesl billie livesl hattie gossett Acrossthe Kitchen Thble: A Sister-toSisterDialogue Barbara Srnithand Bet,erly Smith

r07
109

2r0
219

113

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O.K. Momrna, Who the Hell Am I?: An Interview with Luisah Teish Gloria Anzaldua Brownness AndreaCanaan Revolution: It's Not Neator pretty or euick Pat Porker No Rock ScornsMe as Whore Chrystos Biographies the Contributors of Third World Women in the United States_ Byand About Us:A Selected ibliography B Cherrie Moraga

221 232 238


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Preface
Changedoesnot occur in a vacuum. In this prefaceI have tried to recreate for you my own journey of struggle, growing consciousness, and subsequentpoliticizationand vision as a woman of color. I want to reflect in actual terms how this anthology and the women in it and around it have personally transformed my life, sometimes rather painfully but always with richnessand meaning. I Transfer and Go Underground (Boston, MassaclrusettsJuly 20, 19801 It is probably crucial to describe here the way this book is corning together,the journey it is taking me on. The book still not completed and I have traveled East to find it a publisher. Such an anthology is in high demands thesedays. A book by radicai women of color. The Left needsit, with its shaky and shabby recorclof commitment to women, period. Oh, yes, it can claim its attention to "color"issues, embodied in the male. Sexismis acceptableto the white left publishing house,particularly if spouted through the mouth of a Black man. The feminist movement needsthe book, too. But for different reasons.Do I dare speakof the boredom settingin among the white sector of the feminist movement? What was once a cutting edge, growing dull in the too easy solution to our problems of hunger of soul and stomach. The lesbian separatistutopia? No thank you, sisters.I can't prepare myself a revolutionary packet that rnakes no sensewhen I leave the r,t'hitesuburbs of Watertown. Massacl-rusetts take the and T-line to BIack Roxbury. Take Bostonalone, I think to myself and the feminism my so-called sistershave constructeddoes nothing to help me make the trip fron-r one end of town to another. Leaving Watertown, I board a bus and ride it quietly in my light flesh to Harvard Square,protected by the gold highlights my hair dares to take on, like an insult, in this miserable heat. I transfer and go wtderground. Julie told me the other day' hou' they stopped her for walking through the suburbs. Can't tell if she'sa lnan or a woman, only know that it's Black moving through that part of town. They wouldn't spot her here, moving underground.

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Cherne Moraga

Cherrie LIora!11

The train is abruptly stopped. A white man in jeans and tee shirt breaks into the car I'm in, throws a Black kid up against the door, handcuffs him and carries him away. The train moves on. The day before, a 14-year-oldBlack boy was shot in the head by a white cop. A n d , t h e s u m m e r i s g e t t i n gh o t t e r . I hear there are some women in this town plottinga lesbianrevolution. What does this mean about the boy shot in the head is what I want to know. I am a lesbian.I want a movement that helps me make some sense of the trip from Watertown to Roxbury, from white to Black. I love women the entire way, beyond a doubt. Arriving in Roxbury, arriving at Barbara's*....By the end of the evening of our first visit together, Barbara comes into the front room where she has made a bed for me. She kissesme. Then grabbing my shouldersshe says,very solid-like, "we'resisters." nod, put myself inI to bed, and roli around with this word, sislers, for two hours before sleep takes on. I earned this with Barbara. It is not a given between us - Chicana and Black - to come to see each other as sisters.This is not a given. I keep wanting to repeatover and over and over again,the pain and shock of difference,the joy of commonness,the exhilaratiot-r of meeting through incredible odds againstit. But the passage isthrough,not over, not by, not around, but through. This book, as long as I seeit for myself as a passage through, I hope rr,'ill function for others, colored* * or rvhite, in the same way. Hort''do rve develop a movement that can live with the fact of the lovesand lir.esof these women in this book? I would grow despairing if I believed, as Rosario Moraies refutes, we were unilaterally defined by color and class.Lesbiar-rism then a is hoax, a fraud. I have no businesswith it. Lesbianisntis supposedto be about corrnection. What drew me to politics was my love of women, the agony I felt in observing the straight-jacketsof poverty and repressionI saw people in my own family in. But the deepestpolitical tragedy I have experienced is how with such grace, such blind faith, this commitment to women in the feminist ntovement grew to be exciusiveand reactionary. I call my wy'rrfe srsterson this. I have had enough of this. And, I am involved in this book because more than anything elseI need to feel enlivened again in a movernent
* I l v a n t t o a c k n o w l e d g ea n c lt h a n k B a r b a r a S m i t h f o r h e r s u p p o r t a s a s i s t e r ,h t - r i n . s i g h t sa s a p o l i t i c a la c t i v i s ta n d v i s i o n a r v ,a n c le s p e . c i a l lfl o r h e r w a _ vv i t h u ' o r d s i n h e l p ' l irtgme pull this together. **'I'hrouglrouttlletext,thervord"coktrevill rd beusedbytheeclitorsinrefcrringtoall T h i r d W o r l d p e o p l e sa n d p e o p l e o f c o l o r u n l e s s o t h e n v i s e s p e c i f i e d .

ask the right that can, as my friend Amber Hollibaugh states,finally all questiolrsand admit to not l.ravirrg the answers' A Bridge Gets Walked Over 25 19801 lBoston, Massachusetts July I am ready to go horne now. I am ready. Very tired' Couldn't sleepall night. Missing home. There is a deep fatigue in my body this morning' used ,.,j. Ad'"trtre asks me if I can write of what has happe'ed I f"eel I not me while here in Boston. She asks me if I ca,-1, worzld. say, with yes, I think so. And now I doubt it. The pain of racism, classism.Such trivialized words. The pain of it all. I do not feel people orre.rrr"d ar-rd of color are the only ones hurt by racism. Another meeting. Again walking into a room filled with white wornen, a splatteriirgof wonten of color around the room. The issue on the table, Racism.The dread and terror in the room lay like a thick immovable paste above all our shoulders, white and colored' alike' in we, Third world \Arolrlen the room, thinking back to square one, again. How canyve this time - not useour bodiesto be throv,n over a river of "A bricige torntented historyto brid.gethegap? Barbara says last night: again' gets walked over." Yes, over and over and over I watch the white wonlen shrink before my eyes,losingtheir fluidity of argument, of confidence, pauseawkwardly at the word''race"' the ,,color." The pauses keepirrg the voices breathless,tl-rebodies word", - unable to breatl.re deeply, to laugh, to moan in despair' to taut, erect cry in regret. I cannot continue to use my body to be walked over to -ik" u connection.Feelingevery joint in my body tensethis morning' used. what the hell arn I getting ntyself into? Gloria'svoice has recurred to and enme throughout this frip. A year and a half ago, she rvarned, , T h i sb o o k r v i l l c h a n g ey o u r l i f e , c h e r r i e . I t w i l l c h a n g e co.,raged: both our lives." And it has. Gloria, I wish you were here' Afelr,daysago,anoldfriendsaidtomehowwhenshefirstnretme, I seernedso white to her' I sairl in honesty, I used to feel more white' You know, I really did. But at the meeting last night, dealingwith white women here on this trip, I have felt so very dark: dark with anger, r,t,ithsilence,with the feeling of being walked over' as iwrote in my iournal: "My growing consciousness a woman of to transform my experience.How could it be color is surely seeming that the rnore I feel wilh other women of color, the more I feel myself Chicana, the more susceptibleI am to racist attackl"

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C }itr l.' ,1Jlrtr;u

Cherrie Moraga

xvii

of Breakthrough: Coming Home O'"r*" Francisco, California Septembe/ lgSOl lSan ZO,
When Audre Lorde, speakingof racism, states:,,I urge each one of us to reach dor,r,n into that deep place of knowledge insicleherselfand t o u c h t h a t t e r r o r a n d l o a t h i n go f a n y d i f f e r e n c et h i t l i v e st h e r e . , ' I anr driven to do so becauseof the passion for women that lives i. .rv body. I know now that the major obstaclefor me, personally, in corn_ pleting this book has occurred when I stopped *,iiti,-,g it for myself , lt'hen I looked away fron-rmy own source of kno$,ied-ee. Audre is right. It is alsothe sourceof terror - how deepr' separation between women hurts me. How discoveringdifference,piofound dif_ ferencesbetween myself and women I love has sornetimesrendered rne helplessand immobilized. I think of my sister here. How I stiil haven't gotten over the shock that she would nrarry this white man, ratheithan enter onto the journey I knew I was taking. iThis is the model we have from my rnother, 'urturingiwaiting on my father and brother arl the days of rrer life. Always how if a man lvalked into the room, he lt as paid aitentron t o [ i n d u l g e d ]i n a p a r t i c u l a r L a t i n - w o m a n _ t o _ n r a " u y . 1 F o r y e a r s , * and to this day, I am still recoveringfrom the disappointment that thrs girl/this sister who had been with me everydayof my life growing up - who slept, ate, talked, cried, worked, fought with me _ irus srd_ denly lost to me through this man and marriage. I still struggle with b e l i e v i n g I h a v e a r i g h t t o m y f e e l i n g s ,t h a t i t i s n o t , , i m m a t u r e , , o r "queer"to refuse such separations, still to mourn over this early abandonment, "this homesicknessfor a woman.,'** So few people really u.derstand how deep the bond betrn,een sisterscan run. I ,"r,as raised ,,to to rely o' my sister, to believe sisterscould be counted or.r so the long hard way with you." Sometimesfor me "that deep place of knowledge,,Audre refers to s e e m sl i k e a n e n d l e s sr e s e r v o i r o f p a i n , w h e r e i m u s t c o n t i n u a l l y unravel the damage done to me. It is a calculatedsystem of damage, intended to ensure our separationfrom other women, but particulaily those we learned to see as most different from ourselvesand therefore, most fearful. The women whose pain we do not want to see as o u r o w n . C a l l i t r a c i s m ,c l a s so p p r e s s i o n , r e n , o r d y k e _ b a i t i n g , n the system thrives.
*From "The l \ { a s t c r ' s b o l sw i l l N e v e r D i s r n a n t l eT h e N { a s t e r ' s o u s e " T H ifrolr the textl. **Adrienne R i c h " T r a n c e n d e n t a l E t u d e , " T h e D r e c t mo f a c t ) m n r c n . L a n g r a g e 1Nr,rv Y o r k : N o r t o n , 1 9 7 8 1p . 2 5 . ,

I mourn the friends and lovers I have lost to this damage.I mourn the women lvhom I have betrayed with my own ignorance,my own fear. been one of such deep damage.I have felt between my The year l-ras hands the failure to bring a love I believed in back to life. Yes, the failure between lovers, sisters, rnother and daughter-the betrayal. How have we turned our backs on each other - the bridge collapsing - whether it be for public power, personalgain, private validation, or more closely, to save face, to save our children, to save our skins. whose face it wears,"* Audre says.And I know I must open my "See eyes and mouth and hands to name the color and texture of my fear. I had nearly forgotten why I was so driven to work on this anthology. I had nearly forgotten that I wanted/needed to deal with racisnr from other women. Because I I because couldn'tstand being separated my lesbianismthat seriously.I first felt this the most acutely with took Black won-ren- Black dykes - who I felt ignored me, wrote me off because I looked white. And yet, the truth was that I didn't know Black women intimately (Barbara says "it's about who you can sit down to a meal with, who you can cry with, whose face you can touch").I had such strong "coloredhunches"about our potential connection, but r,r'as basically removed from the lives of most Black wolnen. The ignorance.The painful, painful ignorance. I had even ignored my own bloodline connection with Chicanas and other Latinas. Maybe it was too close to look at, too close to home. Months ago in a journal entry I wrote: "I am afraid to get near to how deeply I want the love of other Latin women in my life." In a real visceralway I hadn't felt the absence(only assumedthe fibers of alienation I so often felt r,r'ith anglo women as normative). Then for the first time, speakingon a panel about racism here in San Francisco,I could physically touch what I had been missing.There in the front row, nodding encouragementand identification, sat five Latina sisters.Count them! Five avowed l,atina Feminists: Gioria, Jo, Aurora, Chabela y Mirtha. For once in my life every part of me was allowed to be visible and spoken for in one room at one tirne. After the forum, the six of us walk down Valencia Street singing songs in Spanish. We buy burritos y cerveza from "[,a Cumbre" and talk our heads off into the night, crying from the impact of such a reunion. Si son mis comadres.Somethins my rnother had with her women friends and sisters.Coming homJ. For once, I didn't have to choose
- From "The (from the textl. N,laster's Tools lVill Never Dismantle The Master's Hor.rse"

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ClterrieNlorapa

Cherrie Moraga

between being a lesbianand beirlg Chicana;between being a feminist and having family. I Have Dreamed of a Bridge 25, 1980) lSan Francisco,California- September Literally, for two years now, I have dreamed of a bridge. In writing this conclusion, I fight the myriad voices that live inside me. The voices that stop my pen at every turn of the page. They are the voices that tell me here I should be talking nore "materialistically" about the oppressionof women of color, that I should be plotting out a "strategy" for Third World Revolution. But what I really want to write about is faith. That without faith, I'd dare not expose myseif to the potential betrayal, rejection, and failure that lives throughout the first and last gesture of connection. And yet, so often I have lost touch with the simple faith I know in my blood. My mother. On some very basic level, the woman cannot be shaken from the ground on which she walks. Once at a very critical point in my work on this book, where everything I loved - the people, the writing, the city-ali began to cave in on me, feeling such utter despairand self-doubt, I received in the mail a card from my mother. A holy card of St. Anthony de Padua, her patron saint, her "special" saint, wrapped in a plastic cover. She wrote in it: "Dear Cherrie, I am sending you this prayer of St. Anthony. Pray to God to help you with this book."And a cry came up from inside me that I had been sittingon for months, cleaning me out - a faith healer. Her faith in this saint did actually once saveher life. That day, it helped me continue the labor of this book. I am not talking here about some lazy faith, where we resign ourselves to the tragic splittings in our lives with an upward turn of the hands or a vicious beating of our breasts. I am talking about believing that we have the power to actually transform our experience, change our lives, save our lives. Otherwise, why this book? It is the faith of activists I am talking about. The materialism in this book lives in the flesh of these women's lives:the exhaustionwe feel in our bonesat the end of the day, the fire we feel in our hearts when we are insulted, the knife we feel in our backs when we are betrayed, the nauseawe feel in our bellies when we are afraid, even the hunger we feel between our hips when we iong to be touched. Our strategyis how we cope - how we measureand weigh what is to be said and when, what is to be done and how, and to r,l'hom and to

who it is we can call an alwhom and to whom, claily decidinglrisking person'sskin, sex, or sexuality)'We are iu, .utt a friend (whatever that other' withouia line. We are women who contradict each ;;;"" Thisbookiswritter.rforalltlrewomeninitandallwhoselivesour first only knew each other in our lives wiil touch. We are a farnily who on thesepagesto make faith a reality dreams,who have cornetogether reality' bring all of our selvesto bear down hard on that --tt ""J,"i, abo,it physical and psychic struggle. It is about intimacy, a desireforlifebetweenallofus,notsettlingforlessthanfreedomeven total vision' in the most private aspectsof our lives' A book, I will lay my body down for that vision' in thls For the *o-"t This Bridge Called Mv Back In the dream, I am always lnet at the river' Cherrie Moraga

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The Bridge Poem


Donna Kate Rushin
I've had enough I'm sick of seeingand touching Both sides of things Sick of being the damn bridge for everybody Nobody Can talk to anybody Without me Right? I explain rny rnother to my father my father to my little sister My little sister to my brother my brother to the white feminists The white feminists to the Black church folks the Black church folks t t T o t h e e x - h i p p i e s h e e x - h i p p i e st o t h e B l a c k s e p a r a t i s t sh c to Black separatists the artists the artists to rny frie nds' parents. . . Then I've got to explain rnyself To everybody I do more translating Than the Gawdamr.rU.N. Forget it I'm sick of it I'm sick of filling in your gaps Sick of being your insurance against The isolation of your self-imposed limitations Sick of being the crazy at your holiday dinners the Sick of beir-rg odd one at your Sunday Brunches Sick of being tl'rcsole Black frierrd to 34 individual white people Find another connection to the rest of the world Find somethir-rg else to make you legitirnate Find son-re other way to be political and hip

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Ilonir,r Aolt,Rzrslul

,l,tt be the bridge to your womanhood "* Your rnanhood Your huntan-ness I'rn sick of rerr.rinding you ltot to Close off too tight for too long fm sick of rrediating with your worst self On bchalf of your better selves I ar.nsick Of havingto rernindyou To breathe Before vou suffocate Your olvn fool self Forget it Stretch or dro'uvn E v o l v eo r d i e The bridgc I n-rust be Is the bridge to my o,rvnpo\\,er I must translate My own fears Mcdiate My own weaktresses I n-rust the bridge to nowhere be But nty true self And then I will bc useful

Introduction
How It All Began In February of 1979, Gloria attended a women's retreat in the insistence, three country just north of SanFrancisco.At Merlin Stone's Third World women \\rere to receive scholarships to her workshop on goddessesand heroines taking place during the retreat. Only one made it - Gloria. The managementand some of the staff made her feel an outsider, the poor relative, the token woman of color. And all becauseshe was not white nor had she paid the $ 150fee the retreat organizershad set for the workshop. The seedthat germinated into this anthology began there in Gloria's talks with Merlin. What had happened at the women's retreat was not new to our experience.Both of us had first met each other working as the only two Chicanas in a national feminist writers organization.After two years of involvement with the group which repeatedly refused to addressitself to its elitist and racist practices,we left the organization and began work on this book. In April, 1979,we wrote: We rvant to expressto all women - especiallyto white middie-class which divide us as feminists;we want to women - the experiences examine incidents of intolerance, prejudice and denial of differences within the feminist movement. We intend to explore the causesand sourcesof, and solutionsto these divisions. We want to create a definition that expands what "feminist" means to us. (From the original soiiciting letter) The Living Entity

What began as a reaction to the racism of white feminists soon became a positive affirmation of the commitment of women of color to our own feminism. Mere words on a pagebegan to transform themselvesinto a living entity in our guts. Now, over a year later, feeling greater solidarity with other feminists of color across the country through the making of this book, we assert: This Bridge Called My Back intends to reflect an uncompromised definition of feminism by women of color in the U.S. We narned this anthology "radical"for we were interested in the writings of women of color who want nothing short of a revolution rn

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Cherrfe!\'Ioraga.tGlr>riaAnzaltl*a

/ r Cherri e M c; aga G loria Anzaldila

the hands of women - who agreethat that is the goal, no natter how we might disagreeabout the getting there or the possibility of seeingit in our own lifetimes. We use the term in its original form - stemming from the word "root"- for our feminist poiitic emergesfrom the roots of both of our cuiturai oppressionand heritage. The Parts of the Whole The six sections of This Bridge Called My Back intend to reflect what we feel to be the major areas of concern for Third World women in the U.S. in forming a broad-basedpolitical movement: 1) how visibility/ invisibility as women of color forms our radicalism; 2) the ways in which Third World women derive a feminist political theory specifically from our racial/cultural background and experience; 3) the destructive and demoralizing effects of racism in the women's movement; 4) the cultural, class, and sexuality differences that divide women of color; 5) Third World women's writing as a tool for self-preservation and revolution; and 6) the wavs and means of a Third World feminist future.

final two sectionsof the book Gloria wrote the introductions to the and The VIsion of the *fri.n explore The Third World Woman Writer we both bore the burden of Third World feminist. Together as editors' - this being our first the book (even more thJn rve had anticipated the proof-reading and attempt ui st.h a projectl, not.onlv doing a telephone answerlIlS *uki"g editorial decisions,but also acting as interviewers and and courier sert'ice, PR persons ancl advertisers' for some of the transcribers, and even occasionally' muses contributorsduringtheir,sometirnesratherpainful"'writingblocks"' Mostimportantiy,wesa\Arourmajorroleaseditorsbeingtoencourage lives' to make some writers to delve even more deeply into their readers meaning out of it for thernselvesatld their Time and MoneY speedin which this Many people have commented on the relative the anthology grew from a book was pioduced. In barely two years' has worked fast' seed of an idea to a published work' Tfue' everyone including the Publishers. urgency' From the The anthology was created r'r'ith a sense of 'TWoyears ago long overdue moment of its conception,it was already should already have when rn,estarted, we knew it was a book that been in our hands. about paytng worrie-d an How do you concerttrate a project u'hen >'ou're why so few women of color attempt the rent?We have sorely iearned to fail back on' ln compiling thisbook this kind of project -,'to "lo^"y more jobs just to keep the book and ourwe both ,llulntui.t"d trvo or tables' No time for class selvesalive. No tin-reto write whiie lvaiting with your boss' have a preparation, to reaci students'papers' argue lovelifeoreatadecentmeal^lvhe.'thedeadlir-remustbenet.No "to go over the contract"' to money to buy stamps, to hire a lawyer of our:1"try u"d an agent. Both of us became expertjugglers 'little chicken" and ".,gug" pennies in our piggybanks: Gloria's the few Cherrie's "tecatebucket'" Agradecimientos Abigail' Leigh and her who helped:Leslie' Btft oh therewerethepeople con picadillo and loving IBM selectric,Ranciy,David, Mirtha's arroz faith in the book' Jane and encouragement,Merlin and Adrienne's our wonten's studiesstudents Saliy'sleitir'tgCherrie change her mind ' who put up with their two.over-tired at San FranciscoStateUniv"ersity typed the whole damn grumpy teachers,Debbie's backrubs' Jo who crew' BarbaraS"swork in manuscript, BarbaraC' and her cameraancl who lent us money' and all spreadingthe word in Boston the friends

The Writers and Their Work


The women in whose hands This Bidge Called My Back was wrought identify as Third World women and/or women of color. Each woman considers herself a feminist, but draws her feminism from the culture in which she grew. Most of the women appearing in this book are first-generation writers. Some of us do not see ourselves as writers, but pull the pen across the page an)'way or speak with the power of poets. The selections in this anthology range from externporaneous stream journal entries to well thought-out theoretical stateof consciousness ments; frorn intimate letters to friends to full-scale public addresses. In addition, the book includes poems and transcripts, personal conversations and interviews. The lt'orks combined reflect a diversity of perspectives,linguistic styles,and cultural tongues. In editing the anthology, our primary comrnitment was to retaining this diversity, as well as each writer's especialvoice and style. The book is intended to reflect our color loud and clear, not tone it down. As editors we sought out and believe we found, non-rhetoricai, highiy personalchroniclesthat presenta political analysisin everyday terms. In compiling the anthology, Cherrie was primariiy responsiblefor the thematic structure and organization of the book as a whole. She alsowrote the introductions to the first four sections the book which of cover 1) The Rootsof Our Radicalism;2l Theoryin theFlesh;3l Racisnttn the Women'sMovement; and 4) On Culture, Class, and Homophobia.

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the other folks who supported our readings,our benefit parties, our efforts to get this book to press. Most especially, of course, we wish to thank all the contributors whose commitment and insight made the nightly marathonswe spent pulling out our hair worth it. They inspired the labor. Putting Our Words into Practice

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with the completion of this anthology, a hundred other books ancl projectsare waiting to be de'eioped. Already, we hear tell in the r,vind from other contributors the possibiiity of a firm about Thircr world Ferninists,an anthology by Latina lesbians,a Third worrd ferninist publishing house. We, wome. of color, are not without plans. This is exactly the kind of servicer,r'e lvish for the anthology to pro'ide. It is a catalyst, not a definitive statement on "Third world Feminism in the U.S.' we see the book as a revolutionary tool falling into the hands of people of all colors.Just as we have been radicalizedin the processof compilir"rg this book, r.r'e hope it will radicalizeothers into action. \\,e errvision the book being used as a reqtired text in most \vomen's studies courses. And u,e don't mean just "special,, courses on Third World Wornen or Racism, but also courses dealing with sexual poiitics, feminist thought, !\'omen's spirituality, etc. Sirniiarly, rn,e want to see this book on the shelf of, and used in the classroornor', every ethnic studies teacher in this countrl', male and female alike. off campus, r,r'e expect the book to function as a consciousness-raiser for rvhite women meeting together or u'orking alone on the issuesof racism. And, lve want to see our colored sistersusing the book as ar.r educator and agitator around issues specific to our oppression as wonlen. We want the book in libraries, bookstores, at conferences,and union meetings in every rnajor city a'd hole-in-the-wall in this countrv. And, of course, we hope to eventuall,v see this book translated and leave this country, n'rakingtangibre the link betr,r'een Third \Abrld wornen in the U.S. and throushout the world. Finally tenemos esperanztt la que ThisBrtdje CailedMy,Bacli will find its way back into our fantilies'iives. The revoiution begir.rs horne. at Cherrie N{oraga Gloria Anzaldira

THIS BRIDGE CAttED tuY BACK WRITINGSBY RADICAT WOIUENoF

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