“I am mad but I choose this madness.” –Gloria Anzaldúa
I have resisted writing for months because I am mad. The irony of my madness is that I am in the “writing” phase of my doctoral program.
If I do not write, I do not graduate with the doctorate I have been pursuing since 18. If I do not write, I do not publish. If I do not publish, I am not competitive. If I am not competitive, I do not get an academic job.
Everything weighs on writing.
Cindy, please. Write some shit down.
But how are you supposed to write when you are mad? When your madness is so pronounced and painful that your hands are immobilized? Even in my most desperate attempts to write, Icould not.
Write, right? Wrong.
I am mad at the academy for its deliberate intellectual and emotional abuse of women of color. I am mad at the academy for its meritocratic ideology. I will not compete against my sisters.I am mad at the academy for its preferential treatment of men, particularly white men. I am mad at the academy for its disinvestment in and exploitation of, women of color. I am mad at the academy for pushing me to write a dissertation on a topic that is “pragmatic”,“diplomatic”, and “marketable”. I will not write want you want me to write—I will write what I need to write.There is nothing pragmatic or diplomatic about the academy for women of color. I am mad at the academy for its unrealistic and obscure expectations. What happens to my community, my soul when the academy expects that I make it my life? Death. I am not mentored—I am bullied and pressured. I am mad at the academy for its attempts to silence women of color. We are further marginalized when we do not submit.I am mad that my sisters have to bear witness to this shit every day, hour, minute, second.
I resisted writing because the academy values it. Any stroke of my keyboard or pen was like a stroke to the academy’s ivory dick. I was mad. I am mad. And I needed to write this.
Fight the tower.