“Because women bare the brunt of our neurosis. It is much easier for us to place our emotional burdens on the shoulders of our wives, our female friends, our girlfriends, our female employees, our female colleagues, than for us to impose them on the shoulders of men.”—
Yashar Ali on women and gaslighting. Very interesting
“Here was peace. She pulled in her horizon like a great fish-net. Pulled it from around the waist of the world and draped it over her shoulder. So much of life in its meshes! She called in her soul to come and see.” ~ Zora Neale Hurston
As I prepared to write my thesis I originally chose to discuss expatriation and French existentialism focusing mainly on the works Richard Wright with a bit of James Baldwin added in for good measure. For some reason, I couldn’t turn my thoughts into sentences. I was facing hard times as a wife, a mother, a woman, a human; and those hard times were discouraging me from speaking my piece. Actually, my voice was gone, my vision depleted and my space only a memory. Somehow in all of that mess Zora Neale Hurston found me. Her words, her characters, and her descriptions of small country towns like Eatonville reminded me of my own family, its Matriarchs, and its rich and beautiful traditions. Hurston, as noted in the aforementioned quote, reminded me of my horizon and how I need to catch it and reel it back in. For that, I must acknowledge and thank her- not enough Black woman writers do.
I would also like to acknowledge and thank the mothers- the feminine energy gone forward and still here- that have had a hand in molding me and this final paper into something solid. I thank them for their sly tongues, their home cooking, and their efforts toward and lessons in survival.
Finally, I would like to mention my daughter, (Nay), to whom I will gladly pass along my torch, my adoration of womankind, and my love for Zora.
“Love is like the sea. It’s a moving thing, but still and all, it takes its shape from the shore it meets, and it’s different with every shore.”— Zora from Their Eyes Were Watching God. (she be knowin’)
“(this describes so much Oya energy) And once the storm is over you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, in fact, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.”—Haruki Murakami, Kafka on the Shore (via enderkay)
“I love, because my love is not dependent on the object of love. My love is dependent on my state of being. So whether the other person changes, becomes different, friend turns into a foe, does not matter, because my love was never dependent on the other person. My love is my state of being. I simply love.”—Osho (via unfetteringlove)
I requested to post the following in this space to maintain anonymity and I’d like to thank the mods of this space for allowing me to do so. I also want to acknowledge that this is a first draft and that changes may be made. I would also like to thank those who helped me…
On the importance of the occupy movement: You know, what they are doing becomes so important because it is in the heart of empire, or what used to be empire, and to criticize and to protest against the model that the rest of the world is aspiring to is a very important and a very serious business. So I think that it makes me—it makes me very, very hopeful that after a long time you’re seeing some nascent political, real political anger here.
It does—I mean, it does need a lot of thinking through, but I would say that, to me, fundamentally, you know, people have to begin to formulate some kind of a vision, you know, and that vision has to be the dismantling of this particular model, in which a few people can be allowed to have an unlimited amount of wealth, of power, both political as well as corporate. You know, that has to be dismantled. And that has to be the aim of this movement. And that has to then move down into countries like mine, where people look at the U.S. as some great, aspirational model. And I can tell you that there is such a lot of beauty still in India. There’s such a lot of ferocity there that actually can provide a lot of political understanding, even to the protest on Wall Street. To me, the forests of central India and the protesters in Wall Street are connected by a big pipeline, and I am one of those people in that pipeline.
“Somebody, your father or mine, should have told us that not many people have ever died of love. But multitudes have perished, and are perishing every hour – and in the oddest places! – for the lack of it.”—
Samhita Mukhopadhyay on why WOC are blamed so much for the decline of the family + friends dating woes.
Part of the [reason] that women are blamed for declining relationships is because up until this moment in history, or even in the last thirty years, it was just assumed that men could do whatever they wanted and women had to compensate for that and they were the people that held family together. There was this inordinate amount of pressure on women to remedy any marital problems, to make sure there’s food on the dinner table so that the family is communicating in the evening, to make sure of any kind of religious education or any kind of cultural education. All of that has directly tied into it the identity of being a woman in the family.
And so we have this huge demographic shift where that is not necessarily the role that women play. They may play that role but they’re also playing a variety of other roles and deserve the equality and freedom to express all of those roles to their heart’s desire. So I think that recognizing how it’s a social pressure really shifts how we look at the family unit and also shifts the focus to how are men involved in creating relationships, in supporting family structures, in maintaining tradition. What is their role in it and how do we shift the focus? Do we abandon a normative family structure? We are in a completely new place right now so how do we move forward? That’s the main question that I’m asking.
“That’s pretty much what the schools are like, I think: they reward discipline and obedience, and they punish independence of mind. If you happen to be a little innovative, or maybe you forgot to come to school one day because you were reading a book or something, that’s a tragedy, that’s a crime -because you’re not supposed to think, you’re supposed to obey, and just proceed through the material in whatever way they require.” -”—
“Occupy activists are thinking deeply about how we might incorporate opposition to racism, class exploitation, homophobia, xenophobia, ableism, violence done to the environment and transphobia into the resistance of the 99%. Of course, we must be prepared to challenge military occupation and war. And if we identify with the 99%, we will also have to learn how to imagine a new world, one where peace is not simply the absence of war, but rather, a creative refashioning of global social relations.”—Angela Davis on the Occupy Movement.
The World We Want Is Us
by Alice Walker (written for #Occupy Writers)
It moves my heart to see your awakened faces;
the look of “aha!”
shining, finally, in
wide open eyes.
Yes, we are the 99%
all of us
refusing to forget
no matter, in our hunger, what crumbs
are dropped by
The world we want is on the way; Arundhati
and now we
hearing her breathing.
That world we want is Us; united; already moving
“I am passionate about everything in my life—first and foremost, passionate about ideas. And that’s a dangerous person to be in this society, not just because I’m a woman, but because it’s such a fundamentally anti-intellectual, anti-critical thinking society.”—bell hooks
“The essence of true love is mutual recognition— two individuals seeing each other as they really are…Embarking on such a relationship is frightening precisely because we feel there is no place to hide. We are known. All the ecstasy that we feel emerges as this love nurtures us and challenges us to grow and transform.”—bell hooks in all about love (via restoried)
“Her mother’s God had always been a distant and amiable man; she sang to Him in Latin that her Father said was unforgivably mispronounced, wore mournful images of saints around her neck, and carefully crossed herself before she ate or drank. But, after that afternoon, her God became exacting and humourless. Relaxed hair offended Him. Dancing offended Him. She bartered with Him, offering starvation in exchange for prosperity, for a job promotion, for good health, and fasting herself bone-thin: dry fasts on weekends, on weekdays, only water until evening. Ifemelu worried that she would, one day, simply snap into two and die.”—
- Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie from a new short story “Miracle”