The daughter of a successful paediatrician and a fashionable socialite, Margo Jefferson spent her childhood among the great and the good of Chicago’s black elite. She calls this society ‘Negroland’: ‘a small region of Negro America where residents where sheltered by a certain amount of privilege and plenty’.
With privilege came exception, and she recalls her reckoning with the strictures and demands of her upbringing at crucial historical moments – the civil rights movement, the dawn of feminism, the fallacy of post-racial America. She charts the twists and turns of a life informed by psychological and moral contradictions.
Jefferson offers a meditation on race, sex, class and American culture, told through the prism of her experience of growing up and being educated amongst Chicago’s upper-class black community.
Image credit: Michael Lionstar