I rarely acknowledge mother’s day, but this tribute to a grandmother made my eyes water. I love that this piece does two things (1) troubles motherhood- it’s not just the biological but the mother/ sister/ aunt/ godmother/ grandmother/ greataunt/ neighbour/ friend/ [older] woman in your life combo (2) doesn’t do the trite simplistic thing, and I hope to share these same values with my daughter blah blah… no she says, “I am passing that wisdom on to others,” she is in the act of doing and sharing with all. Two things my Grannies taught me 1. the importance of treating all people with respect 2. how to entertain!
I’m super impressed by Janelle’s Monae new song, aren’t you? Maybe I’m reading too much into it(as are lots) but I think in many ways this song is the embodiment of queer politic, that deviation from the norm. Black womyn enjoying their sexuality in a plethora of forms. And though this isn’t quite my music of choice, I know that when music does play, my bootie doesn’t lie. 😀 And sometimes I do think I am made to feel weird for dancing a lone late at night. But I think my favourite lines:
Hey sister am I good enough for your heaven?
Say will your God accept me in my black and white?
Will he approve the way I’m made?
Or should I reprogram the programming and get down?
don’t get upset with me when you see me this summer in a black and white striped dress.
I’m a biter like that. 🙂
A friend tagged me on this on facebook: Ms Hill and Beyonce…. Disclaimer: I am very much team Lauryn and not at all team Beyonce. I think the writer does a good job of drawing parallels between their paths and choices. For me the Cuba trip as an act of defiance is a bit of reach… probably b/c I don’t like to give Beyonce much credit and b/c JayZ is the only one who responded to criticism of the trip. The wider point however is regardless of path, the scrutiny is high simply because they are black women.
Also, I do have genuine concern for Ms Hill’s mental health b/c though I do recognise the maddening effects of corporate control and capitalism her responses appear to have been far from strategic. It is however probably too much to expect that strategy is possible when forces are actively working to undo you. So though I think there are mental health issues at play I am in no way downplaying the very real attacks the industry has mounted against her and many others who play, and refuse to play ball. The struggle will not always be won….