From Nation of Islam to Goodwill Tourist: African -American Women at Pan-Pacific and South East Asia Women's Conferences, 1937 and 1955
Fiona Paisley follows the impact of PPWA in another direction and into a later period. Just as Bosch's article considers the internal complexity of Dutch national womanhood in an international environment, so too does Paisley trace how international venues such as the PPWA facilitated the diversification of feminist practice in the United States. She focuses on two very different figures, both of whom used the PPWA to make the case for African American women on an international feminist stage, and for international women's organisations as a venue for African Americans and other national minorities. The first of these women, Pearl Sherrod Takahashi, is one of several fascinating and idiosyncratic characters brought to a wider audience in this special issue. Much like the PPWA itself, Takahashi's career of feminist activism illustrates the transformative (and subversive) uses that subordinated peoples could make of European traditions of racial uplift. The second of Paisley's figures, Ella P. Stewart, helped to transform this tradition even further. Following Stewart's participation in the renamed Pan Pacific and South East Asian Women's Association, Paisley brings the first wave of international feminism through WWII and into a new period, shaped by the cold War and the growing assertions of the Non Aligned Nations.
Women's Studies International Forum