Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Personal tools

Navigation

Thursdays and Every Other Sunday Off

A Domestic Rap by Verta Mae

2018
Author:

Vertamae Smart-Grosvenor
Foreword by Premilla Nadasen

Thursdays and Every Other Sunday Off

Observations from the lives of African American domestic workers—back in print

Thursdays and Every Other Sunday Off is an exploration of the lives of African American domestic workers in cities throughout the United States during the mid-twentieth century. With dry wit and honesty, Vertamae Smart-Grosvenor intersperses musings and testimonials with historical references, quotations, and personal anecdotes, making this account all the more intimate, heartbreaking, and relevant.

Thursdays and Every Other Sunday Off is an exploration of the lives of African American domestic workers in cities throughout the United States during the mid-twentieth century. With dry wit and honesty, Vertamae Smart-Grosvenor relates the testimonies of maids, cooks, child care workers, and others as they discuss their relationships with their employers and their experiences on the job. She connects this work with popular culture, presenting Aunt Jemima, Mammies, Uncle Ben, and other charged figures through the eyes of domestic workers as opposed to their employers, and remembers her own family history (her mother and grandmother were domestic workers after migrating to Philadelphia from South Carolina). Interspersed with musings and interviews are historical references, quotations, and personal anecdotes that make this account all the more intimate, heartbreaking, and relevant.

Thursdays and Every Other Sunday Off

Vertamae Smart-Grosvenor (1937–2016) was an American culinary anthropologist, griot, food writer, and commentator on National Public Radio. She wrote several books on African American cooking, including Vibration Cooking: or, The Travel Notes of a Geechee Girl, an autobiographical cookbook and memoir.

Premilla Nadasen is professor of history at Barnard College, Columbia University, and author of Household Workers Unite, Rethinking the Welfare Rights Movement, and Welfare Warriors; as well as coauthor of Welfare in the United States.

Thursdays and Every Other Sunday Off

Contents
Foreword
Premilla Nadasen
I. “All in a day’s work . . .”
II. The Domestics Rap
III. Mammy, Aunt Jemima & Uncle Ben, the Gold Dust twins and the rest of the family
IV. “I just growed”
V. “House niggers aint shit”
VI. “Freedom is better than slavery and i know cause i done see both sides”
VII. Massas and lawn Moors
VIII. “Nobody knows the master better than the servant”
IX. The Servants Done Riz!
Bibliography

Purchase

About E-books

Available in October 2018