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Audre Lorde

Datum narození: 18. únor 1934
Datum úmrtí: 17. listopad 1992

Audre Lorde byla americká spisovatelka a aktivistka.


„Pokud se bílá americká feministická teorie nemusí zabývat rozdíly mezi námi, a výslednými rozdíly v našem útlaku, tak jak se vypořádáte s tím, že ženy, které uklízejí vaše domy a a starají se o vaše děti zatímco vy se účastníte konference o feministické teorii, jsou, z větší části, chudé ženy a barevné ženy? V jakých myšlenkových ideích má původ rasistický feminismus?“

„Nothing I accept about myself can be used against me to diminish me.“ Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches


„Your silence will not protect you.“ Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches

„If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.“

„When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.“

„I was going to die, sooner or later, whether or not I had even spoken myself. My silences had not protected me. Your silences will not protect you.... What are the words you do not yet have? What are the tyrannies you swallow day by day and attempt to make your own, until you will sicken and die of them, still in silence? We have been socialized to respect fear more than our own need for language."

I began to ask each time: "What's the worst that could happen to me if I tell this truth?" Unlike women in other countries, our breaking silence is unlikely to have us jailed, "disappeared" or run off the road at night. Our speaking out will irritate some people, get us called bitchy or hypersensitive and disrupt some dinner parties. And then our speaking out will permit other women to speak, until laws are changed and lives are saved and the world is altered forever.

Next time, ask: What's the worst that will happen? Then push yourself a little further than you dare. Once you start to speak, people will yell at you. They will interrupt you, put you down and suggest it's personal. And the world won't end.

And the speaking will get easier and easier. And you will find you have fallen in love with your own vision, which you may never have realized you had. And you will lose some friends and lovers, and realize you don't miss them. And new ones will find you and cherish you. And you will still flirt and paint your nails, dress up and party, because, as I think Emma Goldman said, "If I can't dance, I don't want to be part of your revolution." And at last you'll know with surpassing certainty that only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth. And that is not speaking.“

„It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.“ Our Dead Behind Us: Poems

„I am not free while any woman is unfree, even when her shackles are very different from my own.“


„Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.“

„I have come to believe over and over again that what is most important to me must be spoken, made verbal and shared, even at the risk of having it bruised or misunderstood.“

„and when we speak we are afraid
our words will not be heard
nor welcomed
but when we are silent
we are still afraid
So it is better to speak
remembering
we were never meant to survive“
The Black Unicorn: Poems

„Guilt is not a response to anger; it is a response to one’s own actions or lack of action. If it leads to change then it can be useful, since it is then no longer guilt but the beginning of knowledge. Yet all too often, guilt is just another name for impotence, for defensiveness destructive of communication; it becomes a device to protect ignorance and the continuation of things the way they are, the ultimate protection for changelessness.“ Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches


„For the master’s tools will never dismantle the master’s house. They may allow us to temporarily beat him at his own game, but they will never enable us to bring about genuine change. Racism and homophobia are real conditions of all our lives in this place and time. I urge each one of us here to reach down into that deep place of knowledge inside herself and touch that terror and loathing of any difference that lives here. See whose face it wears. Then the personal as the political can begin to illuminate all our choices.“

„The master's tools will never dismantle the master's house“

„There is no thing as a single-issue struggle because we do not live single-issue lives.“

„For those of us who live at the shoreline
standing upon the constant edges of decision
crucial and alone
for those of us who cannot indulge
the passing dreams of choice
who love in doorways coming and going
in the hours between dawns
looking inward and outward
at once before and after
seeking a now that can breed
futures
like bread in our children's mouths
so their dreams will not reflect
the death of ours:

For those of us
who were imprinted with fear
like a faint line in the center of our foreheads
learning to be afraid with our mother's milk
for by this weapon
this illusion of some safety to be found
the heavy-footed hoped to silence us
For all of us
this instant and this triumph
We were never meant to survive.

And when the sun rises we are afraid
it might not remain
when the sun sets we are afraid
it might not rise in the morning
when our stomachs are full we are afraid
of indigestion
when our stomachs are empty we are afraid
we may never eat again
when we are loved we are afraid
love will vanish
when we are alone we are afraid
love will never return
and when we speak we are afraid
our words will not be heard
nor welcomed
but when we are silent
we are still afraid

So it is better to speak
remembering
we were never meant to survive.“
The Black Unicorn: Poems

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