In my opinion what Collins meant by saying “By insisting on self-definition, Black women question not only what has been said about African American women, but the credibility and the intentions of those possessing the power to define” (125)., she meant that words and images that are being portrayed in the media outlets is now defining what it means to be an African American woman. There was a quote in the text by Karla Hathaway that stated “the reality of racism and sexism means that we must configure our private realities to include an awareness of what our public images might mean to others” (100). Basically this meant that we constantly worry about what’s being said about our race because these days if one black person is seen going off or fighting a person or even dressing a certain way one would assume that all black women act this way.
In Chapter 6 Collins describes how when it comes to African American women they are silent when it comes to their sexuality. “Black women’s sexuality is often described in metaphors of speechlessness, space, or vision; as a void or empty space that is ever-visible and invisible…(Hammond 123). This statement stood out to me because our voice is not heard because we live in a patriarch society. What this means is the voice of the women will go unheard but most men does not carry about the issues we may have. Or in other words if a women is placed in a higher source of power it would be out of line for her to say how she feels because of the images society has portrayed us to be. But what women don’t realize and what I think Collins was trying to explain is that the longer we sit and not speak up the longer we will continue to be victims of oppression because we aren’t doing anything to change those notations of how society views us.