Healing the Hole in the Soul: Colored Girls in Search for Agency and Self-Affirmation

Tengku Sepora Mahadi, Maysoon Taher Muhi


This study investigates the motif of the female agency and self-affirmation of traumatic and marginalized women in For Colored Girls/ Who Have Considered Suicide/ When the Rainbow is Enuf (Henceforth, For Colored Girls) by the African-American writer, Ntozake Shange. This play addresses Afro-American women’s long history of trauma and pain that caused a hole in their souls, hoping to heal and transcend their pain by deregulating and proving their spiritual and solidarity strength. The long-kept silence of the marginalization and abuse of the women of color has been shattered by women’s narrating their personal stories and by their transition from invisible to visible and from insecurity to awareness. Women in Shange’s play are victims, and they are wronged, yet they are winners; they "attain victory while being oppressed." Shange’s untraditional technique of using dance, movement, song, music, and poetry, forming them in one performance, makes her play a unique one as it is able to speak the unspeakable and invoke the invisible in order to subvert dominant discourse.

Key words: For Colored Girls; Female agency; Self-affirmation; Afro-American theatre


For Colored Girls; Female agency; Self-affirmation; Afro-American theatre

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/j.css.1923669720110706.139


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