You Can't Keep a Good Woman Down: Stories
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You Can't Keep a Good Woman Down: Stories

3.96 of 5 stars 3.96  ·  rating details  ·  1,522 ratings  ·  55 reviews
In Alice Walker’s second story collection, women stand their ground in the midst of crisis




This collection builds on Alice Walker’s earlier work, the much-praised In Love & Trouble. But unlike her first collection of stories, the women in these tenderly wrought tales face their problems head on, proving powerful and self-possessed even when degraded by others—sometimes...more
ebook, 167 pages
Published November 22nd 2011 by Open Road Media (first published November 22nd 1971)
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Larry Bassett
This short book of short stories is thirty years old. Some of the stories in the book are over forty years old. That is another era. Some of the stories were previously published in the magazines Ms., Mother Jones, Essence and others. Walker won a Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1983 for The Color Purple so you see she can write.

Just to indicate the range of topics here, a few of the story titles are: The Lover, Coming Apart, Fame, The Abortion, and Porn. Just in case you are wondering, there are...more
Erin
Each and every one of these stories has a moment that takes your breath away - Walker creates this perfect, revealing web of circumstances in each story, only to sum up the situation - whether through the words of a character, or a reflection, by saying so much with so little. I've wanted to read this book for a long time and I'm so glad I finally did. I would love to pull out the most powerful quotes of each story here, but I feel that would do injustice to them as a whole. Read it for yourself...more
BoekenTrol
Feb 02, 2012 BoekenTrol rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: oppem
Recommended to BoekenTrol by: CreativeChaos
From the RABCK-box that CC sent me, 'just because'. Look forward to read this book :-)

Reserved this book for a fellow BC'er that also takes part in the wishlist tagging game.

An now I have read it, it is time for a review. Although, that a hard thing to do, because this book has many short stories. I won't write about all. Just say some general things about the book and which story I liked best.

To start with the latter: I liked the first one best: Nineteen Fifty-five. I think it came closest to...more
Becky
At last! I have learned to appreciate the art of the short story! Alice Walker has put together a collection of strong, buoyant heroines I want to be friends with. And then I want to organize with them.

The back of the book advertises itself as a natural progression from its predecessor: "No longer do her heroines lean toward death or even toward the past; no longer do they excuse the aggression of others; no longer are they suspended in their unhappy condition. The women here claim every bit of...more
Faith Justice
From the back:

"A natural evolution from the earlier, much acclaimed short story collection In Love and Trouble, these fourteen provocative and often humorous stories show women oppressed but not defeated. No longer do they excuse the aggression of others; no longer are they suspended in their unhappy condition. the women here claim every bit of space they make.

These are modern stories: About love, lust, fame, and cultural thievery; the perils of pornography, abortion, and rape; the delight of ne...more
Wade
This is a great collection of stories that cover a range of themes. My favorites are the ones that are entirely mundane yet deeply rooted. Her piece about a Black woman author writing about a white woman's rape by a Black man during voter registration drives in the South during the Civil Rights era...it's amazing. She captures the basic reality of life and its total complications. The short story she wrote as an introduction to a book section of Third World Women of Color writing about pornograp...more
Jonathan
Gotta thank my friend Jamie for giving me this awesome collection. These stories vividly portray a variety of black women who are complex, brilliant, and often struggling against their circumstances. And themselves. It is hard to read sometimes because a lot of anger comes through the page. It is well-described and justified and I could often relate.

I particularly loved the last story, "Source," about a lifelong friendship between 2 black women, one darker-skinned and one fair.

The only stinker...more
Robert
These short stories are at times shocking, at all times thought-provoking and forever a wonderfully written recounting of the black and feminist struggle for civil rights. As an elderly white man, one is left with the depressing realization that for all that one sympathizes with, and supports the movement, one will never fully understand what "it" has been like, and still is like, in the U.S. of A for black men and women, and that there is indeed still a stain of fear (not hatred or loathing), d...more
HeavyReader
I wasn't sure if these prose pieces were fiction or essays. Awkward.

Also, it is obvious that these pieces are Walker's early writing. Some of it embarrassed me. I know that's a horrible thing to say, since Walker is a fabulous writer, a legend, really, but that's the truth about how I felt while reading this book.
India
Love it. Alice Walker is fantastic. She writes stories that make you think. They are stories you can read several times and always learn something new.
Lana
Alice walker is a very strong writer, she writes from the heart!!
Mariana
Great Short Stories. Her writing gets better and better.
Lily
This was pretty heavy handed. Detailing rape, pornography, abortion, marriage, sex, childbirth, female friendship, revolution and activism, and general injustice, this book was just a little bit too much. I did really enjoy one of the stories, Advancing Luna, which reminded me of Meridian, the other Alice Walker book I've read. But the others were kinda...eh. I'm glad I read it though. That said, I think I'm going to have to take a break from African American Lit after this semester, too sad.
sydney
A collection of Alice Walker's early stories, focusing on a bunch of strong, feisty women. I liked some of these stories a LOT (like the first one in the book, which is about an Elvis-type character and the woman who writes the song that launches his career) and found others a bit boring. Walker hits a lot of big-ticket topics here: sex, abortion, rape, prostitution, the women's movement, race. Good train or bus reading.

Mulligan
This compilation of short stories was definitely hard-hitting. Alice Walker tackles big topics and creates strong, no-nonsense female characters. For some reason, I just couldn't get into the book overall. Some of the stories were fantastic and others didn't grab my interest. While I can appreciate the quality of the writing, the book fell a little flat for me, and made me want to read something a lot more gripping.
Shauna Mulligan
This compilation of short stories was definitely hard-hitting. Alice Walker tackles big topics and creates strong, no-nonsense female characters. For some reason, I just couldn't get into the book overall. Some of the stories were fantastic and others didn't grab my interest. While I can appreciate the quality of the writing, the book fell a little flat for me, and made me want to read something a lot more gripping.
Daniel G.
Yet another choice from my English subjects at La Trobe University, I hated this one. It was my first introduction to gender politics and it showed me the ugly side. I remember a particular image of a man's hand being described as like a snake. In class we analyzed the sexual and feminist connotations of the description and it's always stuck with me and put me off reading her other work.
Alyssa
This book gave me such a different perspective! I love feeling like I learned something after reading a book when I wasn't expecting that.
MizzSandie
Apr 10, 2013 MizzSandie marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
I TOTALLY JUST BOUGHT THIS TODAY it was on sale for less that 2 dollars at my library and I just saw the name and it rang a bell and I bought it without hesitation without knowing what it was about or from where I recognized the book, and I get home and discover it's that Alice Walker and now I'm just so freakin' STOKED!! :) :)
Angela.
The title should be, "You Can't Keep a Real Woman Down". There was not a place in this book where I would use the adjective: good. Real, however, came up quite a few times. What is a good woman anyway? Undoubtedly, in discussion, Walker and I would not agree.
[Coming Apart was by far my favorite.]
Sondang
I know this has to be great collection of shorts stories.
But huhuhuhu, berat banget nek, topik-topiknya.
I read the book one short story at a time.
I prefer Alice wrote novel :p
But I surely love the title of the book, and the cover.
See the cover?
Her smile show it all!
QB Bookstore. Rp. 156.000
Elliott
Read and compare with "Gorilla, My Love." Walker and Bambara are thematically similiar but so different stylistically (think jazz vis-a-vis hip-hop). "1955" was my favorite story. Also check out "Every Day Use" in the collection, "In Love and Trouble: Stories of Black Women."
Elizabeth
4.5. This feels like required college reading (in a good way). I enjoyed this more than In Love & In Trouble, probably because of the many references to the Civil Rights movement and feminism. Plus, almost all of the women were strong, thoughtful, and in control of their lives.
Lisa
still provocative, and relevent are the strong depictions of women and their journeys. worth reading for walker's challenges on race, class, and sex. and done through literatuer which makes them both more accessible and real. amazing how much can go into a short story.
Jennessa
I have never read Alice Walker before. I like how she keeps her characters real. If I closed my eyes and heard the words of the stories, I think that I could actually put myself in each of these women's shoes. It's very well written.
Cyndi Lu
I liked the way walker explore the ways in which the color line affects women of color. From rape to passing to explorations of "colored" identity and how interactions with whites create and shift that identity. Very good collection.
Subarashi
i think often of the story "advancing luna - and ida b wells" a good example of the overlapping and often contradictory nature of racism and sexism. a very good and clever explication with the narrator divided and navigating between.
Cindy
Very short read, most of the short stories were really interesting and I actually "got" others were merely hit and miss. You had some really high points and low points, maybe it is a thing where I just didn't "get it"
Jim
Alice Waker is not an elegant wordsmith, but her stories are solid. I appreciate that she is able to write about issues that I care about within stories and characters that I also care about.
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Alice Walker (b. 1944), one of the United States’ preeminent writers, is an award-winning author of novels, stories, essays, and poetry. In 1983, Walker became the first African-American woman to win a Pulitzer Prize for fiction with her novel The Color Purple, which also won the National Book Award. Her other books include The Third Life of Grange Copeland, Meridian, The Temple of My Familiar, an...more
More about Alice Walker...
The Color Purple The Temple Of My Familiar Possessing the Secret of Joy In Search of Our Mothers' Gardens: Womanist Prose Meridian

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