AUDRE LORDE

Women of Color in America have grown up within a symphony of anger, at being silenced, at being unchosen, at knowing that when we survive, it is in spite of a world that takes for granted our lack of humanness, and which hates our very existence outside of its service. And I say symphony rather than cacophony because we have had to learn to orchestrate those furies so that they do not tear us apart. We have had to learn to move through them and use them for strength and force and insight within our daily lives. Those of us who did not learn this difficult lesson did not survive. And part of my anger is always libation for my fallen sisters.

‘The Uses of Anger: Women Responding to Racism’, in Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches (Freedom, CA: The Crossing Press, 1984), p. 129.

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ELAINE SCARRY

Physical pain does not simply resist language but actively destroys it, bringing about an immediate reversion to a state anterior to language, to the sounds and cries a human being makes before language is learned.

The Body in Pain: The Making and Unmaking of the World (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1985), p. 4.