"The girl and the woman, in their new, individual unfolding, will only in passing be imitators of male behavior and misbehavior and repeaters of male professions. After the uncertainty of such transitions, it will become obvious that women were going through the abundance and variation of those (often ridiculous) disguises just so that they could purify their own essential nature and wash out the deforming influences of the other sex. Women, in whom life lingers and dwells more immediately, more fruitfully, and more confidently, must surely have become riper and more human in their depths than light, easygoing man, who is not pulled down beneath the surface of life by the weight of any bodily fruit and who, arrogant and hasty, undervalues what he thinks he loves. This humanity of woman, carried in her womb through all her suffering and humiliation, will come to light when she has stripped off the conventions of mere femaleness in the transformations of her outward status, and those men who do not yet feel it approaching will be astonished by it. Someday (and even now, especially in the countries of northern Europe, trustworthy signs are already speaking and shining), someday there will be girls and women whose name will no longer mean the mere opposite of the male, but something in itself, something that makes one think not of any complement and limit, but only life and reality: the female human being." Rilke
She’s singing this in front of Kanye and Emma Roberts and her peers and intimidating people in an intimidating space (the Boom Boom Room) and she just tears her chest open and let’s it out.
I think she’s nervous and a little self-conscious at the beginning. Finds the pain at around a minute, let’s it out at 1:45.
Also, it sounds like the crowd isn’t paying attention to her when she begins. When she hits her stride, they listen. By the end she’s clearly got them. I think women (or other underdogs) need to do this in life. Don’t wait for an invitation to speak up or join in. Start, and if your work is good, you’ll have them by the end.
On the fist day of Sociology 101 in 2002, Professor Evans asked everyone in our class to look down at how our legs were positioned as we sat. She asked the women if we had our legs crossed, and asked the men if their legs were open. I think she may have asked the same about our arms. The conclusion was overwhelmingly that the women sat with legs crossed, arms close to our bodies. She said we were trying to take up as little space as possible. The males tended to look more relaxed: legs spread, shoulders back, hips open. She said the men were more comfortable being a larger and stronger presence.
My favorite yoga teacher Claudia, during class this past October, showed us a series of poses for our hips. We learned to position the hips three ways: closed, neutral, open.
Cross your legs and your hips are closed. We practiced sitting, standing, and against the wall poses where our hips turned in on one another, made narrow. She said closed hips impede our emotions from being expressed, says we store pain and unfelt feeling in closed, tight hips.
Stand with your feet and toes facing directly forward and your hips are neutral. The pelvis is horizontal and free from strain in either direction. When sitting at your desk, keep your hips neutral for back health. And emotional health, Claudia says. Easier for blood and other things to flow through open hips.
Open your hips to counteract the tightness of having them closed before. Point your toes outward, pigeon-toed, spread your legs wide, and your hips are open. Like a triangle. Release tension, open up, release the things you’re bracing from feeling. Bleed.
Now in New York, I’m learning that to keep your balance while standing on the train, you’ve got to open your hips. You’ll fall if you keep those things closed too tightly.