ON BLACK SISTERS STREET PDF
On Black Sisters' Street. Home · On Black Sisters' Street Sisters On the Case · Read more Summer on Blossom Street. Read more. “ [‘On Black Sisters Street’ is] boiling with a sly, generous humor. Unigwe is as adept at conveying the cacophony of a Nigerian bus as she is at suggesting the larger historical events that propel her characters. “Chika Unigwe’s ON BLACK SISTERS STREET is a grand and. SEXUALITY AND SUBJECTIVITY IN CHIKA UNIGWE'S ON BLACK SISTERS' STREET Uchechukwu Peter Umezurike Department of English University of Port .
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Editorial Reviews. From Publishers Weekly. Starred Review. In her U.S. debut, Nigerian immigrant Unigwe sets a melancholy tale in her adopted home of. An Excerpt from Chika Unigwe's On Black Sisters' Street. By Nkem Egenuka on Thu, 28/09/ - The world was exactly as it should be. No more and. 'On Black Sisters Street' tells the haunting story of four very different women who have left English sample of 'On Black Sisters' Street' by Chika Unigwepdf.
I was curious about the lives of the many Nigerian prostitutes living Antwerp. Hearing about and actually being confronted with the issue of the many Nigerian prostitutes was challenging in itself. Writing the book challenged everything I knew growing up in a Catholic Christian home back in Nigeria.
Meeting them made me realize that for some people shame is actually a luxury, and how easy it is for human beings to judge others from our own comfort zones. Many of the women felt that as a black woman in Europe I could not have been a writer, but rather must be something else. However the women were willing to speak to me, despite their initial skepticism.
I was also challenged about the questions about the morality of their line of trade. The existence of the good or bad worlds and the grayness in between was a constant shadow. Where's my [expletive] mascara? Joyce was at the same time stuffing a denim duffel bag with a deodorant spray, a beach towel, a duster, and her Smiley, so nicknamed by Sisi.
Smiley was a lubricant gel, innocuously packaged in a plastic see-through teddy bear with an orange conical hat and a wide smile; it might have been a child's bottle of glue. She blocked her mother's face, looking aghast at Smiley, her lips rounding to form a name that was not Joyce.
Maybe she don' leave already," Efe said, putting an electric toothbrush into a toilet bag. In an inner pocket of the bag was a picture of a boy in a baseball cap. On the back of the photograph were the initials L. The picture was wrinkled and the gloss had worn off, but when it was first sent to her it would have been easy to see in the shine of the gloss that highlighted a broad forehead that the boy bore a close semblance to her.
The way a son might his mother.
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She carried this picture everywhere. They still had a bit of time before they had to leave, but they liked to get ready early. There were things that could not be rushed.
Looking good was one. They did not want to turn up at work looking half asleep and with half of their gear forgotten. Maybe she's gone on one of her walks.
On Black Sisters Street
Sisi went out alone at least twice a week, refusing company when it was offered. Nobody knew where she went except that she sometimes came back with boxes of chocolate and bags of Japanese fans and baby booties embroidered in lace, fridge magnets and T-shirts with Belgian beer logos printed on them.
Joyce was already out of the bathroom.
She had hoped Sisi would help her cornrow her hair. In between perm and braids, her hair was a wilderness that would not be subdued. Neither Ama nor Efe could braid.
Nothing for it now, she would have to hold it in a bun and hope that Madam would not notice that the bun was an island in the middle of her head, surrounded by insubordinate hair that scattered every which way. If Sisi had not left, if she was simply running late, she would have Madam to answer to.
For Sisi's sake, Joyce hoped she would be back on time. How could anyone forget what Madam had done to Efe the night she turned up for work late? Nothing could excuse her behavior, Madam said. Not even the fact of her grandmother's death. Chika Unigwe was born on 12 June in Enugu, Nigeria, the sixth of seven children.
That same year, following her marriage to a Belgian engineer, Chika moved to Turnhout in Flanders, Belgium's Dutch-speaking region. From the foregoing, we have attempted to analyse how Efe found her place as a subject within the material existence of an ideological apparatus Althusser Understanding Alek: Subjection through Familial Norms Unigwe portrays Alek as the only female character with a free will, who is coerced into the prostitution ritual, unlike the others who decided of their own volition to venture into the system of sex trafficking.
Unizik Journal of Arts and Humanities Udumukwu , or the family ideological state apparatus as Althusser would say. Her ideological positioning thus occurs in her relationship with her mother, mostly within the household, where the presence of ideology is largely concentrated, and subsequently with her soldier-boyfriend — that is, before she is inserted into the sexual objectification practice.
In the familial space, maternal influence is very determining on the daughter and, as a matter of patriarchal tradition, mothers have the innate competence to naturalise social norms into the consciousness of their children. In other words, mothers do shape the subjectivities of daughters within the dominant ideological practice of their society.
In her subjection, she longs to have him play with her much the same way as he would with the refugee children In this instance, we see Alek representing her lived relationship to her real relations of production Althusser Polycarp asked for a table that could sit three, for when they had the occasional visitor, he said.
Alek smiled shyly and said she would prefer a table that could seat six. She was thinking ahead.
‘On Black Sisters Street’
She would make it clear to them that they could look upon her as a sister. Or a daughter. Unizik Journal of Arts and Humanities her imaginary relationship i. In the text, what Alek represents to herself in terms of marriage does not approximate the real thing, that is, the true representation of what marriage conditions entail, but what her own lived representation of what marriage constitutes. But this illusory belief is shattered when her boyfriend subjected to the pressures from the cultural ideological apparatus personified by his parents tells her he could never marry a foreigner unless she is from his own ethnic group Although our focus is on Alek, one cannot help but notice her boyfriend as subjected to the familial ideological apparatus as well.
This shows the extent to which a person can be shaped and subjected to and by ideology. It could also pose as a deliberate attempt to objectify Alek as an appendage of male whim and desire. The pimp, in this case, doubles as the dominant subject to which Alek is subjected and also as an ideological state apparatus. Although the renaming of Alek does not only erases her identity but also prefigures her into the established social relations of sexual objectification.
But then this is not our concern here. Conclusion In conclusion, ideological practices are so pervasive and commonplace in society that nothing really seems to take place outside ideology Easthope and McGowan 56 , as we have noted in the case of Alek, where her subjectivity is formed, transformed and regulated by the family and cultural ideological apparatuses present within the prevailing capitalist social formation.
As a matter of fact, ideology orientates us into believing that we have some degree of choice. It predetermines us to act in certain ways, recognising and accepting roles that conform to ideology; thus, ideology structures our lives by predetermining the way we think.
We observed that although these girls are inserted into the ideological practices they were more or less victims of the dominant ideology of their world.
In participating as subjects they were sexually objectified by men, and so became the means by which this ideology maintained and reproduced itself. A Glossary of Literary Terms.
Wadsworth Cengage Learning, Althusser, Louis. Lenin and Philosophy and Other Essays. New York, N. Monthly Review Press, Easthope, Anthony, and McGowan, Kate. A Critical and Cultural Theory Reader.
Emenyonu, Ernest. Building on the Legacies of the Twentieth Century. Ernest Emenyonu, African Literature Today 25 Fiske, John. Introduction to Communication Studies. New York, NY: Routledge, Fredrickson, Barbara L. Psychology of Women Quarterly 21 Althusser and the Renewal of Marxist Social Theory. U of California P, Stanzel, Franz K. A Theory of Narrative. Cambridge U. Udumukwu, Onyemaechi.Additional Information. Is there really an escape for prostitution or are they bound to do this job th This was not an enjoyable read.
But it is their particular histories that tie this clear-spoken heartbreaking book together, how very different people can come together, and move on. To pay him off they must sell their bodies to the sex-starved men of Antwerp. April Honestly, this is truly a great book. As her remaining co-workers and house mates, Ama, Efe and Joyce come to terms with her death, each relives their painful journey from Nigeria to Belgium to become sex workers, and how they have been brought together by Dele, a Nigerian pimp, and by "the trump card that God has wedged in between their legs".
Unigwe never stoops to cliche nor self pity. The space in the middle provided ample dancing room. Times Literary Supplement.
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