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  • vol. i

    Reclaiming Pleasure

    — vol. i

    Acknowledgment of the trauma associated with Black women’s sexuality and determination to move forward.


    Written · August 26, 2018

    Reclaiming Your Softness and Strength Through Discussing Pleasure, Desire and Sex

    As women, we rarely have conversations about our own pleasure and satisfaction in our sex lives. If we do talk about those things, we keep them within our own friendship circles and rarely extend them to a larger communal conversation. Sex is something to be enjoyed; we all come from it, we all exist because of it.

    As a lightskin woman, I am used to walking into co-ed spaces and feeling entirely over-sexualized and objectified. I have never been able to find a space where I can openly talk about my sexual experiences without feeling like a negative light is being shone on me. As Black women, we exist on the fringes of society and we can reclaim our narratives by embracing softness and strength simultaneously. The softness needs to be harnessed within ourselves, to our own bodies, and the strength should come with instructing our partners on how to give us pleasure.

    In my own life I have recently begun to have these conversations about what I like and what I don’t like. I realized that I was not even communicating with my own body about certain things; I didn’t know what I liked for such a long time. I went along with what the other person did because I didn’t feel like my needs were valid or relevant in the discussion or the act. I think we all know what it is like to fake an orgasm for the benefit of our partner or to lay in bed after sex unsatisfied.

    For me, self pleasure was an open vessel of knowledge about experimentation and discovery on how to communicate with my own body. I realized what exactly made me feel good and what things needed to be done in order to achieve pleasure and satisfaction. The things I learned from myself and by myself offered me the ability to know what to tell my partners.

    It is a crucial aspect to generating and developing a healthy relationship with your partner to tell them what you need. You are doing yourself and them a disservice by not. The shame that you may feel will peel away once you begin to voice your truth, and all that will be left for you to feel is liberation. Even if you have these conversations during, before or after sex, figuring out what works for you is the first step. Whenever you have them you are teaching yourself and your partner that what your desires are important and necessary.

    Some things you can discuss/ask yourself and your partner are:

    1. What makes you feel pleasure?
    2. What does not make you feel pleasure?
    3. What do I like?
    4. What do I not like?
    5. How can we make sure we are both getting what we need/want?
    6. How can I make sure I am getting what I need/want?

    I have realized that communicating about these things is an act of courage, it will open up your relationship and yourself in new and profound ways the soul and body have never known. Which, for black women existing in this world is a revolution in itself. I know that society projects roles and titles onto us without asking for our approval. In order to know your body, you must talk to it, you must understand it’s curves, holes and folds. Within knowing, we are relaiming so much more than just ourselves. Our wombs are not dirty, our cycles are not heathen. They are the creators and bearers of lives destined for beauty. We do not have to be detached and dislocated from those things anymore if we chose not to be.

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    As told by

    Doriana Diaz

    My name is Doriana Diaz, I am a afro-latina female creative. I attend Temple University in Philadelphia PA, where I study Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies and Spanish.

    This story is part of Reclaiming Pleasure, a theme that the Black Girl Magik collective explored and invited the community to investigate with us through a practice of communal healing and coalition building.

    Disconnecting to Reconnect

    The Black Girl Magik collective supports each member in her healing journeys through our annual self-care break. During this time we disconnect from social media to the capacity our programming allows, the internet and other distractions to further reconnect with ourselves. Additionally, we take this time to re-engage with the mission of the collective and to return the root of what it means to organize and build collectively. We are now considering what this self-care break can look like when we invite transparency into our restoration process, and engage our community through physical programming.

    The main goal of our residency with Powrplnt is to provide resources for women of color to engage in restoration and healing and to define self-care on their terms. We aim to: 1) conjure the capacity to center the resilience of women of color; 2) provide resources for women of color to engage in restoration and healing with us, and to define self-care on their terms; 3) host programming, open studios and discussions for and with the community.

    Healing is a journey and we are honoring this journey as a collective by disconnecting from social media, the internet and other distractions to further reconnect with ourselves. We invite you to join us and can’t wait to share how you can meet us IRL.

    All Themes

    Reclaiming Pleasure
    Returning Home

    Reclaiming Pleasure

    "Reclaiming Pleasure" is the assertion of sexual power, alongside a period of recovery. It is a Black woman finding strength in her sensuality and grounding autonomy in the realms of pleasure and desire. It is the rejection of standards set on our ancestors and the distinction between agency and objectification.

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    Conversations (1)

    Events (1)

    Vibes (3)

    Resident DJ: Alfafa Brown

    vol. i — Trunode

    Resident DJ: ON MOMMAS

    vol. ii — In Practice of Being

    All Themes

    Reclaiming Pleasure
    Returning Home

    Returning Home

    “Returning Home” is an exploration back to lands, rituals and traditions that we have always known. It is voyaging and feeling at home as soon as you step foot on the ground. It is hearing music and your soul perceiving the frequencies. It is seeing a familiar face and knowing that somehow you have met before. “Returning Home” is a return to self.

    Our Stories(3)

    Conversations (1)

    Events (7)

    Vibes (3)

    Resident DJ: Poetic

    vol. i — Coming Home

    Resident DJ: Diva

    vol. ii — Congo Calypso

    All Themes

    Reclaiming Pleasure
    Returning Home