"A place to belong"

HOME IS THE UNFORGIVING AND UNBEARABLE METAPHOR that nonetheless is perhaps the cleanest motivation for an artist: to find a place for herself, a place to belong, which is also finding herself. I do not mean this in an uncomplicated way: the act of belonging is concurrent with the undoing and unraveling of belonging (and its impositions on the self) such that belonging is tussle and fray and soothe. Home is tenuous at best, especially for the Black woman whose artistic legacy is to leave home, literally or figuratively. Further, the idea of home, of a land to belong to, remains a struggle for this Black woman artist, particularly because ‘home’ and ‘land’ and ‘nation’ have been put to use in colonization, war, genocide, terms of nationalism that are irreconcilable to her sense of herself not only because they evoke and enunciate patriarchy and white supremacy but especially because they do not speak to the home she is longing for. She cannot give up on the idea of home, of a place to belong, but she cannot merely accept what other people have deemed home to be. Hence home, like its distant relative language, is in need of repair.

+ Kevon Everod Quashie,
Black Women, Identity, and Cultural Theory: (Un)Becoming the Subject