Abstract

Abstract:

This discussion centers on Timeka Tounsel's book Branding Black Womanhood: Media Citizenship from Black Power to Black Girl Magic (Routledge, 2022). In this meeting, participants examined the various ways in which Black women's empowerment became a commercial, image-driven enterprise and the ways Tounsel's methodology unpacks issues of race, gender, power, markets, identity, and visibility. Black Girl Magic, a central construct of the book, was a phrase coined in a 2013 tweet proclaiming Black women's resilience, which, less than five years later, was employed regularly commercially. A significant part of this book conversation discusses how the book explores how Essence, under the leadership of Susan L. Taylor, encouraged self-branding and conscious consumerism for Black women. The conversation also discusses how the book includes case studies of campaigns led by Black women and companies' corporate social responsibility efforts. Lastly, the book covers positive outcomes where media producers have used the idea of Black Girl Magic to advance more inclusive visions of media citizenship for Black women.

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