Biting your tongue?
Have you ever bitten your tongue and smiled instead of responding as you would prefer because you knew that answering wouldn’t help or would make things even worse? Have you come across such blatant discrimination that you were struck speechless, not knowing where or how to start addressing the blind assumptions involved? Have you gritted your teeth in response to a blithe backhanded compliment? Have you met ignorance so willful, so fixed, so complacent in its belief that it was right, that to try to redress or correct it would be a total waste of energy?
That’s partly what the seven-piece performance by Tabanka African and Caribbean Peoples Dance Ensemble is about (at least that’s what I understood from it). Of course I’ve experienced racism here in London. Most – but not all – of which was directed to my non-WASP friends and most – but not all – was quite a while ago. That didn’t stop the cold shivering horror that I felt upon reading about the stimuli that created this work. I find it difficult to comprehend the horrendous levels of racism occurring anywhere in the world, but to see and indirectly experience through Tabanka Crew’s dance what has occurred in Norway, part of Europe, makes me want to scream or cry.
Meanwhile, the discrimination I’m currently experiencing in the UK (which is not racially motivated) makes my blood alternately boil and freeze. Dealing With it, this seven part piece by Tabanka African and Caribbean Peoples Dance Ensemble shows all these emotions and more.
I’m up to the neck in deadlines but wanted to share this image as soon as I had processed it. Back to work now..