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date: 03 April 2020

Sanchez, Sonia locked

(b. 9 September 1934), civil rights activist, poet, and playwright.
  • Elizabeth Brown-Guillory


Uh Huh, But How Do It Free Us?, the title of Sanchez’s 1970 drama, best sums up her commitment to improving the life of black Americans. Sanchez was a leading activist during the civil rights movement of the 1960s. Like her contemporaries, including Amiri Baraka, Addison Gayle, Don L. Lee, Nikki Giovanni, Tom Dent, and Lorenzo Thomas, Sanchez called for a change in American politics. She became a spokesperson for the millions who demanded a revamping of a society in which the masses of African Americans were impoverished and undereducated. When meager gains were made by select black politicians, many of whom she believed had been bought, Sanchez was quick to ask, “Uh huh, but how do it free us?”

Sonia Sanchez was born in Birmingham, Alabama, to Wilson L. and Lena Jones Driver She earned a bachelor s degree from ...

A version of this article originally appeared in Black Women in America, 2nd ed.

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