Monday, August 14, 2017

Gertrud Vasegaard

In search of beauty today.

The Virginia State Colony for Epileptics and Feebleminded: Poems

Molly McCully Brown’s first book of poems, “The Virginia State Colony for Epileptics and Feebleminded,” is part history lesson, part séance, part ode to dread. It arrives as if clutching a spray of dead flowers. It is beautiful and devastating. 

The title refers to an actual place. The Virginia State Colony for Epileptics and Feebleminded was a government-run residential hospital in Amherst County, Va. It opened in 1910.
Its doctors were eugenicists. From the mid-1920s through the mid-1950s, thousands of patients, seen as defectives and moral nonentities, were sterilized without their consent. For many if not most of its residents, it was a house of horrors.
NYtimes article.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Favorite Pina Bausch scene

Ana Mendieta

Bird Transformation (1972) maps a transition from human to animal as Mendieta dresses the naked woman in feathers and thus transforms her into a bird-woman. Bird Transformation precedes and heralds Mendieta’s canonized Silueta series, which she began in Mexico in 1973, all of which show the artist’s silhouette in different landscapes, formed of various natural materials such as stones, twigs, driftwood and flowers.
Mendieta’s works revolve around themes like beauty, belonging, gender roles, female sexuality and men’s sexual oppression of women. Her work is associated with feminist performance pioneers in the USA, but her use of popular traditions and occult rituals, from among other places sources the Cuba from which she fled as a child, make her a loner.  Louisiana Museum of Art

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

pina bausch


Haruo Nakajima dies at 88

“One might regard him as a symbol of Japanese hate for the destruction that came out of nowhere and descended upon Hiroshima one pleasant August morn,” The New York Times wrote of the monster in a 1956 review of “Godzilla: King of the Monsters,” the English-dubbed version of the film released in North America. “But we assure you that the quality of the picture and the childishness of the whole idea do not indicate such a calculation. Godzilla was simply meant to scare people.” NYTIMES


Monday, July 31, 2017

Teen Vogue

Teen Vogue is stepping up with great articles and politics. Here is one example.

OG History is a Teen Vogue series where we unearth history nottold through a white, cisheteropatriarchal lens.
As the transgender community continues to fight for civil rights in the U.S., one of the most common arguments against progress is that transgender people are a recent phenomenon. Some regard trans people as a symptom of the postmodern condition, or identity politics on steroids. Many claim that the struggle for transgender rights is difficult because the concept is still new to many Americans. Full article here.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Let America be America Again- Langston Hughes

Let America be America again.
Let it be the dream it used to be.
Let it be the pioneer on the plain
Seeking a home where he himself is free.

(America never was America to me.)

Let America be the dream the dreamers dreamed—
Let it be that great strong land of love
Where never kings connive nor tyrants scheme
That any man be crushed by one above.

(It never was America to me.)

O, let my land be a land where Liberty
Is crowned with no false patriotic wreath,
But opportunity is real, and life is free,
Equality is in the air we breathe.

(There’s never been equality for me,
Nor freedom in this “homeland of the free.”)

Say, who are you that mumbles in the dark? 
And who are you that draws your veil across the stars?

I am the poor white, fooled and pushed apart,
I am the Negro bearing slavery’s scars.
I am the red man driven from the land,
I am the immigrant clutching the hope I seek—
And finding only the same old stupid plan
Of dog eat dog, of mighty crush the weak.

I am the young man, full of strength and hope,
Tangled in that ancient endless chain
Of profit, power, gain, of grab the land!
Of grab the gold! Of grab the ways of satisfying need!
Of work the men! Of take the pay!
Of owning everything for one’s own greed!

I am the farmer, bondsman to the soil.
I am the worker sold to the machine.
I am the Negro, servant to you all.
I am the people, humble, hungry, mean—
Hungry yet today despite the dream.
Beaten yet today—O, Pioneers!
I am the man who never got ahead,
The poorest worker bartered through the years.

Yet I’m the one who dreamt our basic dream
In the Old World while still a serf of kings,
Who dreamt a dream so strong, so brave, so true,
That even yet its mighty daring sings
In every brick and stone, in every furrow turned
That’s made America the land it has become.
O, I’m the man who sailed those early seas
In search of what I meant to be my home—
For I’m the one who left dark Ireland’s shore,
And Poland’s plain, and England’s grassy lea,
And torn from Black Africa’s strand I came
To build a “homeland of the free.”

The free?

Who said the free?  Not me?
Surely not me?  The millions on relief today?
The millions shot down when we strike?
The millions who have nothing for our pay?
For all the dreams we’ve dreamed
And all the songs we’ve sung
And all the hopes we’ve held
And all the flags we’ve hung,
The millions who have nothing for our pay—
Except the dream that’s almost dead today.

O, let America be America again—
The land that never has been yet—
And yet must be—the land where every man is free.
The land that’s mine—the poor man’s, Indian’s, Negro’s, ME—
Who made America,
Whose sweat and blood, whose faith and pain,
Whose hand at the foundry, whose plow in the rain,
Must bring back our mighty dream again.

Sure, call me any ugly name you choose—
The steel of freedom does not stain.
From those who live like leeches on the people’s lives,
We must take back our land again,
America!

O, yes,
I say it plain,
America never was America to me,
And yet I swear this oath—
America will be!

Out of the rack and ruin of our gangster death,
The rape and rot of graft, and stealth, and lies,
We, the people, must redeem
The land, the mines, the plants, the rivers.
The mountains and the endless plain—
All, all the stretch of these great green states—
And make America again!
From The Collected Poems of Langston Hughes

Monday, April 3, 2017

me

Boogie!

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Alice Coltrane