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Epilogue: Gender and Race as Cultural Barriers to Black Women in Politics

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 December 2015

Carol Moseley Braun
Affiliation:
United States senator for the state of Illinois
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Summary

In 2003 I stood for nomination by the Democratic Party for the presidency of the United States. That this is a little-known fact doesn't bother me much: it was a very personal exercise that I hoped then and believe now helped shape attitudes about the proper place to be occupied by women and people of color in American society. From that experience, and many others in my personal odyssey, I can say without reservation that in America, gender is more of a cultural barrier than is race.

It is a curiosity to me that I have throughout my life been an accidental pioneer; my journey has broken ground and opened doors only because, in my humble opinion, that ground and those doors illogically excluded me in the first place. The script of our lives is always written in relationship to the other dramas being played out by the people who share our world. This is an inescapable fact of life. It all depends on timing and context. But I think that my life, more pointedly than most, is comprehensible only in the context of the times in which I live and that my decisions over time, whether rational or not, have come about out of an ever-changing milieu.

The 2003 campaign was inspired by the same motivations that had always inspired my choosing the “road less taken.” I had returned to the United States from New Zealand, where I had served as ambassador, with the full intention of restoring the family farm.

Type
Chapter
Information
Interconnections
Gender and Race in American History
, pp. 260 - 266
Publisher: Boydell & Brewer
Print publication year: 2012

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