University of Vermont

University Communications

Lens on the First Lady

Release Date: 07-13-2010

Author: Lee Ann Cox
Phone: 802/656-1107 Fax: (802) 656-3203

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Associate professor of English Emily Bernard coauthored the text of a new book, Michelle Obama: The First Lady in Photographs which won this year's NAACP Image Award in the category of biographical literary work. In her essay, "Native Daughter," Bernard seeks to understand Michelle Obama in the context of race, feminism, fashion and family and what about her has so captured America's attention. In the book Bernard writes that Obama is "a walking medley of contradictions. She represents a story so curious, so puzzling, that we have developed a seemingly insatiable need for more information."

UVM Today spoke with Bernard about this phenomenon and what drew her as a scholar to write about the first lady.