Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker

Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker Review

Oprah Winfrey is renowned for her media savvy, marketing sense, philanthropic efforts, and accumulated wealth (and the power that accompanies it). She's earned her rep, of course, and her path to stardom and influence couldn't have been easy. Imagine, then, how difficult it must have been a century ago for Madam C. J. Walker, America's first female African-American millionaire. The daughter of slaves, married and divorced by the age of 20, Madam Walker spent nearly two decades as a lowly scrubwoman before concocting (or, as she claimed, being presented in a dream) the formula for a much needed hair care product for African-American women. After making her hair care business a resounding success, Walker devoted much of her time and resources to social causes and philanthropy.

In On Her Own Ground, A'Lelia Bundles, Walker's great-great-grandaughter and a woman of no small accomplishment herself (she's spent many years as a television news producer for NBC and ABC), offers an affectionate but unblinking portrait of Madam Walker. (Bundles' mother urged her daughter from her deathbed not to worry about promoting a particular image of their famous forebear, to simply tell the truth.) Bundles also explores the complicated relationship between Madam Walker and her only slightly less renowned daughter (and the author's namesake), A'Lelia Walker, a key figure in the Harlem Renaissance, and the elder Walker's interactions with such other seminal African-American figures as W. E. B. DuBois and Booker T. Washington.

Title:Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker
Edition Language:English

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    Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker Reviews

  • Richard Derus

    A 2020 Netflix limited series will star Bill Bellamy, Octavia Spencer, Blair Underwood and more starpower!This is excellent news....

  • Dana

    Written by Madam C.J. Walker's great, great granddaughter, the book was well-researched and thorough. The negative for me was that it read like a textbook and was too dry. Madam C.J.'s accomplishments...

  • Regina Lindsey

    On Her Own Ground: The Life and Times of Madam C.J. Walker by Alelia Perry Bundles5 Stars and a heartWhen I came across this passage in The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society book I capture...

  • Dianne

    I appreciated reading about a woman who made such a huge impact on the beauty industry as well as learning more about Madam C.J. Walker's innovative business philosophy, her strong desire to make a ch...

  • Lois

    I LOVED this.This is SO interesting!The author gives so much period details and peripheral history.Beautifully done!I'm off to watch the show at last:)...

  • Carol Irvin

    Loved the mini series but the book reads like a textbook ......

  • Dawn Lennon

    It's startling finally to discover important business and social leaders who have made a big difference long forgotten. That's the case with Madam C.J. Walker, the most financially successful (actuall...

  • Lynell

    Our group felt that this biography of Madam C.J. Walker, written by her great-great-granddaughter, was well written and extremely well researched. The readers admired Madam for her persistence in keep...

  • Melissa

    I first "met" Madam CJ Walker during my internship at the Women's Museum. We had a few of her cosmetics for display, and she just seemed like an amazing woman. The first African American millionaire, ...

  • Julia

    This was an excellent biography of Madam CJ Walker. I was always really interested in her as a child and lately, in caring for my daughter's hair and establishing career goals, I've become even more i...