Here's the description which appears in the introduction to the special issue in which this essay appears:
Jamee Prichard’s essay “Reading the Black Romance: Exploring Black Sexual Politics in the Romance Fiction of Rebekah Weatherspoon” weaves personal narrative, author interviews, Black romance history, and Black feminist criticism to unpack how Weatherspoon’s representations of Black men and women differ from those published in the 1990s. She argues that early Black romance represented Black women in deference to and in defense of Black men, whose images were denigrated in the popular media and culture. She concludes that Weatherspoon’s erotic novels challenge the “Strong Black woman” image and center Black women’s joy, care, vulnerability, and sexual pleasure. Whether BDSM, heterosexual, or polyamorous, stories of empathetic and loving relationships between Black women and men show them in partnerships, and Black masculinity is not predicated on women’s subordination.