I Still Love Him
I Still Love Him is an expository and intimate reflection on power, plight, pain, and the pursuit of happiness within the performance of contemporary black masculinity.
Black men in are typically categorized into very simple stereotypes related to gender, relationships, sexuality, family, and creative interests. It is that thinking that creates the “Good Black Man” “Bad Black Man” dynamic. With further examination, one you will find that there has traditionally been a challenge for society to develop a line between the merit of one’s masculine performance and sexuality. How does this affect the development of healthy and sustainable spaces of intimacy and vulnerability? How does it inform the art of loving others, of loving oneself? How does it alter the social dynamics in what are traditionally considered safe spaces (ie: Tahir Rice murdered in a park while playing alone with a toy gun).
To successfully deconstruct these banal narratives, their influences, impositions, is to create space for black men to move beyond the trappings of the cliché societal roles and distinctions both personally and professionally.
What dimensions of openness, humor, and self-exploration have they been allowed to seek without judgement or violence? When can they beloved, be young, be playful, be awkward, be safe, be alive, be fee? What happens when they choose not to wait for permission?
“…This is not to say that black men are exempt from compulsory heterosexuality. To the contrary, we all are subject to the normative expectation of heterosexuality, where variation from that normative expression is deemed deviant, in need of correction, straightening out. What makes the situation different and worse for black men, however, is that we must navigate through zones of contradiction.” - Vershawn Young (2011)