My book, The Overlooked Voices of Hurricane Katrina: The Resilience and Recovery of Mississippi Black Women, analyzes these women’s lives over a 15-year period. The book describes the experiences of the women survivors and explores the lessons they learned. In addition, the book longitudinally examines the women’s buoyancy and discusses how they overcame challenges after Hurricane Katrina. The geographical catastrophic destruction in the state of Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina is discussed and the book highlights the multi-dimensional characteristics of these Mississippi Black Women Survivors. The book highlights the scant focus on minority women survivors, details the plight of these hidden Mississippi Women survivors, and describes aspects of their resilience and recovery since the disaster. It serves as a platform to bring the hidden narratives and voices of the women in this study to the forefront, in spite of the fact that their stories have been obscured since 2005 when the worst American cyclone, Hurricane Katrina, decimated the region.
“I grew up in …[the northeastern part of the state, about 260 miles from the Gulf Coast] and most of my family still lives there. After talking to my sister, I decided I would leave but I needed to finish getting my house boarded up. As the storm approached, I talked to several friends, you know, we helped each other board up our homes when hurricanes threatened and when the weatherman says they [dangerous storms] are headed to the Coast [Gulf of Mexico or Mississippi Gulf Coast]. After coordinating their efforts to secure their homes, I packed a suitcase, got in my SUV, and drove to Monticello on the Thursday [August 25, four days before Katrina hit]. See, I am afraid of hurricanes since I didn’t grow up here.”