“Parker stayed woke to black suffering, violence against black bodies—especially those of black women—to the suffering engendered by multiple, egregious oppressions. With The Complete Works of Pat Parker, we are allowed an opportunity to historicize Pat Parker’s significance to black women’s literary traditions, lesbian erotics, to black queer struggles and black feminisms, and to global social justice movements. She was in her time. Now, with this important text, she will be in all time to come.”
—Alexis De Veaux, author of Yabo
During her lifetime, Pat Parker was a renowned African-American, lesbian-feminist poet and performer. She was the author of Jonestown & Other Madness (1985), Movement in Black (1978, 1983, 1989, 1999), Womanslaughter (1978), Pit Stop (1974, 1975), and Child of Myself (1972, 1974). Her poems appeared in numerous journals, newspapers, and anthologies. With Judy Grahn, she recorded the album Where Would I Be Without You (Olivia Records, 1976), and one of her spoken poems appeared on the album Lesbian Concentrate.
She performed live readings at numerous colleges and universities throughout the United States and abroad. Her work is often included in Women’s Studies curricula.
Parker was born in Houston in 1944 and moved to Los Angeles after she graduated high school. She lived in the San Francisco bay area from 1965 until her death. Parker died in 1989 from complications of cancer. Her partner of nine years, Martha Dunham, and their daughter, Anastasia Dunham-Parker-Brady, survived her as well as Cassidy Brown whom she co-parented.
“As the #BlackLivesMatter movement calls attention to the grave risks Black people have always faced and as poets and artists wrestle with the question of how to marry the political and the personal in their work, we have never needed Pat Parker’s work more. It is absolutely immediate, searing, salving, saving, and NECESSARY.”
—Kazim Ali, author of All One’s Blues: New and Selected Poems
“The poetry of Pat Parker reaches out to us anew and shakes our consciousness—fiercely.”
—Cheryl Clarke, author of By My Precise Haircut
THE COMPLETE WORKS OF PAT PARKER
by Pat Parker
Sapphic Classics 04
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