What's Love Got to Do with It?: Understanding and Healing the Rift Between Black Men and Women

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Simon & Schuster, 2000 - Social Science - 254 pages
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Relationships between black men and women in America are in crisis. As divorce rates rise to quadruple what they were in 1960 and the percentage of unfaithful black husbands is double that of any other ethnic group, the time has come to figure out what's gone wrong between African-American men and women. In "What's Love Got to Do with It?" Donna Franklin, the first prominent authority on race relations to speak out on this painful, complex issue, provides an incisive and riveting analysis of the gender tensions that are a common legacy of slavery and its aftermath. It is these tensions, she says, that are eroding the ability of black men and women to work jointly in the struggle for social equality.

Over the last decade, the increasingly visible conflict between black men and women has come to the public's attention in many forms. Whether in the Senate confirmation hearings for Clarence Thomas's Supreme Court appointment. Mike Tyson's trial for the rape of Desiree Washington, or in black men's public efforts to "atone" for hurtful behavior, the schism between black men and women has become a national issue. Franklin provides an inside look into these relationships and how they are unique.

Most important, "What's Love Got to Do with It?" directs readers to a path for healing. Franklin explains how the skills black women have developed to be strong and self-sufficient can also be used to nurture their relationships. Likewise, she suggests ways for black men to support one another and their relationships with women without excluding them, as has happened with the Million Man March.

Sure to ignite controversy, this is a landmark work on relationship problems between blackmen and women by a sociologist who is a leading scholar in her field. It offers a critical and provocative new point of view.

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Breaking the Silence
The Cult of True Womanhood
The New Manhood

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About the author (2000)

Donna L. Franklin is the author of Ensuring Inequality: The Structural Transformation of the African-American Family, which won the American Sociological Association's Goode Distinguished Book Award for "outstanding contribution to family scholarship." She has held faculty appointments at the University of Chicago, Howard University, Smith College, and the University of Southern California. She currently lives in Los Angeles, California.

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