Blackness, history & love · Books · Gender · Performance & Arts

if destroyed still true

for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuffor colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf by Ntozake Shange
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

‘coloured’ (minoritised, othered in their skin, colonised OR vibrant, various, multifaceted) ‘girls’ (infantilised, sexually exploited and pathologised, excluded from woman/lady OR youthful, spirited, free, pure-hearted) , five Black women… speaking in the safe space of loving affirmation between them, poetising rawness of pain and beauty, passion and exhaustion…

No respectability politics. Don’t start telling these women what they should have done. These are words of possibility and impossibility. They did what was possible and cried for what was impossible

Feminists are saying NOW what Shange says here about rape culture… (how strongly can I echo the words of Black feminists/womanists and say we White women have to hear Black women and get behind them on this, because not only are they hurt by male violence but by the violence of a law-and-order feminism that signifies on the plantation narrative of Black men as a threat to White women)

Colour is sweetness here with bitter linings… is worn with glitter… orange butterflies and aqua sequins… on bodies glowing with femme charms to take their pleasure from men who can’t be loved, men who hurt their hearts and utter cheap apologies, men who even destroy their lives. The nourishing saving love they live on is for each other. Shange’s ladies in red brown blue purple yellow step from the stage leaving space for the queer coloured girls to dance their songs…

I’m hoping to go see a production of this soon!

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2 thoughts on “if destroyed still true

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