‘What’s in a name?’ – Juliet’s dismissive remark paradoxically underscores how consequential labels are. It is in full consciousness of the potential perils of naming and categorising that this website promotes Black British Women Writers. While the terms ‘Black,’ ‘British’ and ‘Women’ are in no way indicative of the literary value of these authors’ works, the label ‘Black British Women Writers’ brings together authors who are all too infrequently dealt with as a category. Despite growing critical interest in British Women’s Writing and Black British Writing, the body of writing that lies at the intersection of both these fields rarely has been considered as a field in its own right, even if some of the authors have achieved canonical status in Britain.
The Black British Women Writers website seeks to stimulate the discussion of the literary art of women writers of African and African-Caribbean descent living in Britain. It introduces these authors, the criticism their work has generated – already over 400 bibliographical references at the moment of the website's launch – and some of the scholars who have produced this criticism; it also provides information about relevant past and future activities, in particular academic events centred on the promotion and exploration of Black British Women’s Writing as a field.
The website has grown out of the 1st Expert Seminar on Black British Women's Writing held at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Belgium) in March 2013. It has come about with the financial support of the Flemish research council (FWO Vlaanderen) and the help of many of my colleagues working on Black British Women Writers and my thesis and master students at the VUB. I thank them all wholeheartedly!
Do let us know how this website has proven useful to you and how you may help to improve it. Please submit additional bibliographical references in MLA format. If you are interested in further discussing Black British Women’s Writing and Criticism, do email us and join us on Facebook or LinkedIn.
Prof. Dr. Elisabeth Bekers, editor
Vrij Universiteit Brussel (VUB) – FWO Vlaanderen (2011-2013)
To cite this website or an individual webpage:
Bekers, Elisabeth (ed.). Black British Women Writers. Vrije Universiteit Brussel en FWO Vlaanderen, 2013. Web. [Date of access.] <http://www.vub.ac.be/TALK/BBWW>
“Jackie Kay.” Black British Women Writers. Ed. Elisabeth Bekers. Vrije Universiteit Brussel en FWO Vlaanderen, 2013. Web. [Date of access.] <address>