Jessica Kingsley Publishers has signed My Black Motherhood: Mental Health, Stigma, Racism and the System by Black maternal advocate Sandra Igwe.
Commissioning editor Elen Griffiths acquired world English language rights directly from the author. My Black Motherhood will be published in trade paperback and e-book on 21st June 2022.
Igwe is the founder of The Motherhood Group, a platform designed to support the Black motherhood experience through events, workshops, peer-to-peer support, collaborative projects and campaigning. She is also a co-chair of the National Inquiry into Racial Injustice in Maternity Care and a trust of the Birthrights charity.
When Igwe became pregnant with her daughter she fell victim to the "strong Black mother" myth and did not find the support she needed in pre-natal care, during a traumatic birth and in post-natal care. In My Black Motherhood, Igwe shares her journey and the voices of other Black mothers.
Griffiths commented: “Sandra is passionate about opening the conversation on perinatal mental health, and how systemic biases in health services affec t Black mothers’ experiences of birth and parenthood. My Black Motherhood shines a light onto these crucial issues. We’re delighted to be able to share Sandra’s story – and the voices of other mothers — through her moving and insightful book, which is a brilliant addition to JKP’s publishing focusing on maternal health and experiences.”
Igwe added: “When I first became a mother, I felt like I had to be silent to all of the struggles that came with my new role, while I only highlighted the positives — but didn’t dare to speak on the elements that were slowly crippling me, affecting my mental health and essentially my life. Now imagine that the services that are supposed to support you, help you, – are what you fear the most, and trust is nowhere to be found. Then the pressures that accompany the rich culture and traditions that you were raised or born into often aren’t spoken of or cause further conflict. That’s not just my story, but the story of so many other Black women that embark on their motherhood journey.”
“I’m so glad that what I have written will give so many mothers, Black mothers, a voice, make us feel seen, heard, and hopefully understood,” she continued. “This book has been a journey for me, almost therapeutic, but so necessary.”
Sandra Igwe is a best-selling children's author, her book Zoe and Chloe's Feeling jumped to number 8 best-sellers just after 4 days of release.
Zoe and Chloe are sisters who experience an array of feelings and emotions daily, just like other children too! It is often difficult for young children, to articulate emotions and to understand their actions as a result. This beautiful watercolour illustrated book, with a catchy rhyming style displays a variety of everyday feelings in a fun and imaginative way, whilst promoting positive mental health in children.
Using her experience of being a social entrepreneur (The Motherhood Group) and inclusion consultant, this book acts as a practical first step to ensuring families are diversifying their reading collection.