Like One of the Family (Paperback)
On Our Shelves Now
A new edition of Alice Childress's classic novel about African American domestic workers, featuring a foreword by Roxane Gay First published in Paul Robeson's newspaper, Freedom, and composed of a series of conversations between Mildred, a black domestic, and her friend Marge, Like One of the Family is a wry, incisive portrait of working women in Harlem in the 1950's. Rippling with satire and humor, Mildred's outspoken accounts vividly capture her white employers' complacency and condescension--and their startled reactions to a maid who speaks her mind and refuses to exchange dignity for pay. Upon publication the book sparked a critique of working conditions, laying the groundwork for the contemporary domestic worker movement. Although she was critically praised, Childress's uncompromising politics and unflinching depictions of racism, classism, and sexism relegated her to the fringe of American literature. Like One of the Family has been long overlooked, but this new edition, featuring a foreword by best-selling author Roxane Gay, will introduce Childress to a new generation.
About the Author
Alice Childress (1916-1994) was a playwright, novelist, and actress. Born in Charleston, South Carolina, and raised and educated in Harlem, she is the author of numerous plays, including Wedding Band, Wine in the Wilderness, and the Obie Award-winning Trouble in Mind--as well as books for young adults, such as Rainbow Jordan and A Hero Ain't Nothin' but a Sandwich. Roxane Gay's writing has appeared in publications including the New York Times Book Review, Bookforum, Time, and Los Angeles Times. She is also the author of the books Ayiti, An Untamed State, and the New York Times best seller Bad Feminist. Her latest book, Hunger, is forthcoming from Harper in 2016.