Posts tagged burlesque
Burlesque: Using Our Bodies As Resistance and Joy

It was a joy and pleasure to create this photo essay about burlesque for Wear Your Voice’s #BodyPositivityinColor series. Grateful to work with the incredible beauty photographer Nathalie Gordon, and to have Egypt Black Knyle, Seraphina Wilder, Loretta E. and Caramel Knowledge be a part of this project. Check out the full post here!

Burlesque is our legacy as Black and Brown folks. Its roots are in social and political commentary and it continues to be a rejection of what is considered “respectable.” Since its inception, burlesque has been about challenging the mores of the day and often the restrictions that are put on our bodies and sexual expression based on gender and race. It encourages free sexual expression and celebrates our bodies in all of their forms…not just white American “beauty” aesthetics. Women of color especially have used this art form for over a century to make political statements, challenge racial stereotypes, parody the bullshit we deal with on a daily basis, and be as sexy and glamorous as we wanna be.

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Bawdy Politic: The Best Burlesque in New York City

While most people think of Dita Von Teese or that lackluster Christina Aguilera movie when they hear the word “burlesque,” women of color have a rich history and presence in the art form. Since the late 19th century, women of color in the United States have been creating burlesque variety shows that offer satirical commentary on American racism and gender roles. (The word “burlesque” comes from the Italian word burla, which means “joke.”) 

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