Centering Black Feminist Storytelling: Examining Motherhood on P-Valley and the Dynamic Dialogue Recirculated on Twitter between Showrunner, Writers and Viewers

Author: ORCID icon
Lovett, Drew, Media, Culture, and Technology - Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, University of Virginia
Wade, Ashleigh, AS-Media Studies (MDST), University of Virginia
Carey, Tamika, AS-English (ENGL) PV-Inst for Practical Ethics, University of Virginia
Ellcessor, Elizabeth, AS-Media Studies (MDST), University of Virginia

P-Valley is a critically acclaimed show airing once a week on the STARZ network, created by Black playwright turned showrunner Katori Hall. It has gained widespread attention in the entertainment industry and has fostered ongoing conversations on Twitter because of its compelling storytelling centering the lives of Black women who work at a strip club in the Mississippi Delta rural town of Chucalissa. It garnered buzz due to its nuanced representation of Black femininity, agency and sexuality as seen in the show e vibrant discourse on Twitter by the audience who I conceptualize as a Black feminist refracted public. This public engages in discussions, critique and celebration of Black culture and the storylines that focus on the socio-political elements that influence Black women’s everyday lives.
Drawing on Black feminist theoretical work as well as Black feminist media scholarship I aim to explore the concept of Black feminist storytelling and its recirculation on Black Twitter focusing on the dynamic discourse seen between the showrunner, writers room and the audience. Social media is a space for critical engagement, interpretation and connection and through engaging with P-Valley with a Black feminist lens, the show and its online discourse contribute to ongoing conversations about Black womanhood, intersectional feminism and the power of storytelling as a tool for social change.

MA (Master of Arts)
Black feminist storytelling, Television, Streaming Services, Black Twitter, PValley
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