As a Black Feminist Ethicist, I challenge society’s expectations to think, and arrive at thinking the unimaginable about Black women and girls in the United States of America. I aim to alter the perceptions, languages and lifestyles of those that challenge our ability to make basic decisions about our lives and bodies. From my position, I encourage the system of oppression and those who benefit, to consider the most controversial idea as it relates to Black women and girls, that we ARE proactive in how we define ourselves. We are Self-Determined in spite of the profits that continue to be made off the bodies, ideas and expressions of Black women and girls.
I translate this ethic in the language of Womanword, a re-creative disturbance of conventional expectations. Simply put by Toni Cade Bambara:
Womanword-which sometimes growls-is sometimes “breathless with laughter,” sometimes profane, sometimes “don’t ever let up, always teaching,” and as ready for cookin’ as a black-eyed pea that’s been soaking all night – womanwork is also Toniword is blackwomanword everywhere alive in the universe of word that talks and writes better than it has been trained.
Some may call this “radical” however, I name it as the living in the realities of being able to name and define myself a Black Queer Feminist Woman and have my freedoms trampled upon in the same breath. This is what the experience of the of 21st century is in the United States of America where the only thing that is “Post-Racial” is the actual word.
VANGUARD: The New Negress, is a self-defined ethical politic that I connect to my values and embodies the current conditions and future aspirations I have for my ancestry, my people and our lived experiences. I speak and stand in firm solidarity with 1st Nation and Native American women, Latina, Asian Pacific Islander and immigrant women. The body of knowledge that I draw from is rooted in Black Women’s Liberation, Black Feminism and Womanism.
I encourage you to take the conscious act of changing society and use the available tools and constructions to create a world that we ALL can believe in.