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“Well I just generally bes the president of everything”: Rural Black Women’s Empowerment through South Carolina Home Demonstration Activities

Carmen V. Harris
Black Women, Gender + Families
Vol. 3, No. 1 (Spring 2009), pp. 91-112
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.5406/blacwomegendfami.3.1.0091
Page Count: 22
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“Well I just generally bes the president of everything”: Rural Black Women’s Empowerment through South Carolina Home Demonstration Activities
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Abstract

Abstract This article is a narrative overview of the empowerment rural African American in South Carolina women developed through their participation in home demonstration programs. It contributes to a growing body of literature that specifically focuses on the experience of African American women with the home demonstration service. The lives of these women are documented through the annual narrative reports of the state agents for Negro extension work. The reports on this segregated program show that rural Afro–South Carolinian women developed leadership skills, entrepreneurial spirit, sisterhood, and a concern for community uplift that is typically exemplified among club women of the African American middle class. Despite the privations caused by gender, race, and class, rural Afro–South Carolinian who participated in extension programs developed a positive sense of their capabilities.

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