28 February 2020

Published February 26, 2020 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

Click the froggy if you can!

Another tribute for Black History Month. 😀

Genre: Historical Fiction

Word Count: 100

LA VAILLANCE

Pride filled Deborah as she put the finishing touches on her fifteen-year-old granddaughter’s costume. “You’ll be the spittin’ image of the courageous lady you’re named for. She was about your age when she danced her way out of St. Louis.”

            Josie slipped into the sparkly garment. “Was she pretty?”

            “Gorgeous. Mama saw her in the Ziegfeld follies in 1936. I got to see her in Miami in 1951. First time I ever sat next to a white lady. Miss Josephine Baker was my idol—black, rich and spoke French.”

            “Tell me more, Grandma.”

            “Sorry, sugar, Rochelle’s run out of words.”

***

Josephine Baker was a woman who defied being summed up in 100 words. At the age of 20 she took Paris by storm and starred in three French motion pictures. She spied for the French resistance and performed for the Allied troops in WWII. In 1963 she marched on Washington with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Denied natural offspring, she adopted twelve children of different nationalities and races, calling them her rainbow tribe. 

CLICK HERE to watch a short video of her life. 

90 comments on “28 February 2020

  • Ms Baker was indeed a remarkable lady, sadly never appreciated by white America in the way she was in France, where she was a Chevalier of the Légion d’honneur, the highest military and civilian award.
    Her anti-segregation stance was even more courageous given how much it harmed her career in the USA.
    Bien fait, m’lady!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dear CE,

      It’s sad how many American entertainers, black and Asian, had to go to France to find acceptance and equality…and fame. doesn’t say much for all Americans being equal, does it?
      Merci, kind sir.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • I’m going to have to learn more about this woman, from a source that isn’t limited to 100 words 🙂 I don’t remember hearing about her before, which is truly a shame. Thanks for introducing me to her, Rochelle.

    Like

  • Great vignette. I’ve seen several animations featuring the Boa Dance, most notably the Triplets of Belleville. She was a stunning pioneer, one of the many black artists who left the racism of the US behind as well as they could. The US is still as racist as it ever was, sadly. The irony of black soldiers who fought fascist racism in a segregated army comes immediately to mind.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Josh,

      So true about the racism. I don’t believe any one of us can say we don’t see color or ethnicity. However, I’d like to think there are those of us who appreciate our differences. I’ll stop there and say thank you re my vignette. 😉

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • Great story and love your ending. I enjoyed the link and video although I knew most of it. She was an extremely talented lady and brave beyond words. She was ahead of her times for sure, and a role model for many causes. You just keep on educating us Mrs. Wordsmith.

    Liked by 1 person

  • What a woman! Your story exemplifies her courage and positive approach to life with the stories about making her career in France, and her adopted ‘rainbow tribe’. But even more telling is your subtle “first time I ever sat next to a white lady” which was, of course, a right partly won by Josephine. It’s little details like that that make you such a good writer. I also liked the way the granddaughter was named Josie, presumably for Josephine.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Keith,

      I like to stay within the parameters of the word count to challenge myself. 😉 I do “cheat” in other ways. One being writing and scheduling my stories ahead so I’m not going nutzoid when Wednesday rolls around. Noblesse oblige. Glad you enjoyed the post. Thank you.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • Here’s another example of a name I knew but a person about whom I knew nothing. Another amazing story about an amazing person. I love the last line.

    Mine’s going to have to wait this week. I just got called (texted) in for an emergency writer’s meeting for the web series I’m working on.

    Liked by 1 person

  • For once, I knew a lot of the material you shared this time. Josephine Baker is an inspiration to us all, no matter what skin color. She’s an example of beating the odds through sheer force of will. I’ve admired her story for many years now. Great stuff Rochelle. You make us all proud.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Eric,

      Your comments make me blush. I just love learning about these marvelously determined people throughout history. If the history taught in school had been more character driven I might have liked it or even passed it. 😉 Thank you so much.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • Ah Rochelle, you’re always keep your sparkling wit. Great wink to the reader at the end. I’m in Vietnam on work at the moment, but have the day off, so enough time to post a story this week. Next Wednesday looks pretty free too, so I should be back in a few days. Hope things are going well there.
    -David

    Liked by 1 person

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