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ZORA
Unapologetic. Ours. A publication from Medium for Black women.

Patriarchy

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Sex & Love

Do you think monogamy was put in practice to benefit women? Think again.

Closeup of a Black woman’s hand with an engagement ring.
Closeup of a Black woman’s hand with an engagement ring.

In 2017 I was shooting an episode of the Grapevine where the topic of discussion was gold diggers. I attempted to explain the subtle ways our romantic customs center male desire, often at the expense of female agency.

That’s when I said it, before a room of cheering women, and slack-jawed men.

“The truth about monogamy is — monogamy is the way that we can ensure that average Joes get to get married too!”

In my defense, I was neither praising polygamy nor slamming—well — broke men. I threw it in as an aside.

I thought this was common knowledge…


Yoho called AOC out of her name, and we all can draw strength from her clapback

Screencap of AOC addressing Yoho’s remarks.
Screencap of AOC addressing Yoho’s remarks.

It’s been a week since Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was called out of her name by her colleague Rep. Ted Yoho. It’s been four days since she took to the House floor and provided the most elegant clapback that eviscerated Yoho’s paltry excuse for an apology and explained why his “I’m a husband and father” respectability politics don’t matter anymore.

Building on the tireless and oftentimes silent sacrifices of our grandmothers and mothers, today’s women just aren’t having it anymore.

“I could not allow my nieces, I could not allow the little girls I go home to, I could not allow…


While their big day may bring on a lot of emotions, the crying is much more complicated than you’d think

A black-and-white photo of an Indian bride crying, her hands wiping her tears.
A black-and-white photo of an Indian bride crying, her hands wiping her tears.

Losing a job, going through a heartbreak, or coping with loss are all commonly associated with emotional exhaustion, but what about weddings? Many South Asian Muslim brides deferred to agony and despair when asked to describe their weddings.

“Ultimately, I ended up in my parents’ bed, fetal position, just bawling my eyes out,” said Seham Siddiqui, an Indian American Muslim bride. She admits she rushed into marriage due to her personal excitement and an internalized urge to wed; and then divorced her ex-husband a few years afterwards due to red flags.

On her wedding night, Siddiqui was experiencing whiplash from…


President Bolsonaro and his government are worsening indigenous genocide with the rampant forest fires

Last week, several videos of the burning of the Amazon forest went viral on social media. The climate change anxiety was palpable as horrifying images of trees burning along a nondescript road were retweeted thousands of times, along with photos of the sky in São Paulo darkened by the smoke from the fire thousands of miles away. Zé Bajaga, chief of the Apurinã people in the south of the Amazon state, reports that 18 indigenous groups in the area are being affected by the fires. “It’s hard to breathe and walk around because of the smoke,” he said. …


But only if we continue to fund it

Toni Morrison’s speech “The Habit of Art,” included in her book The Source of Self-Regard, references an event originally written about by an unnamed young reporter. It recounts the way that a group of Haitian citizens used theater to undermine the Tonton Macoute, a special operations unit within the Haitian paramilitary during Jean-Claude Duvalier’s 15-year dictatorship. “Tontons” were authorized by the government to instill terror in citizens by systematically and indiscriminately murdering them. And when the government decided that this form of terror wasn’t vile enough, it instituted a rule that forbade people from retrieving corpses laying in public spaces…

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