Phenomenal Women: On the Transformative Power of Black Women

On a rainy afternoon in August, Valerie Jarrett, April Ryan, Alicia Garza and the Rev. Dr. Renita Weems—truth-tellers, as I refer to them—descended on Lola’s in Martha’s Vineyard to discuss the intersections of race, gender and power in America. And given the urgency of the current moment, these phenomenal black women drove a deeply felt discussion about how black women, despite sexism, racism and inequitable access to power in America, continue to rise.

The conversation reminded me of conversations I used to listen to between my mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. You know: lady conversations. Black lady conversations. A lot of mmm hmms, hand claps and head nods. Black women don’t always have the space to talk about our lived experience or the privilege to recount our shared experiences in the context of current events. Listening to them was centering, and it felt like home.

This article was originally published in The Root.