Vuyelwa Maluleke is a spoken word artist, script-writer, and actor based in Johannesberg, South Africa. She was shortlisted for the Brunei University African Poetry Prize in 2014, and was the slam champion of the Word N Sound 2015 Poetry League Competition. She is the author a chapbook called Things We Lost in the Fire, and is one of the two founders of a company called BLACKGIRLPLOTTING.

Our co-editor, Shafinur Shafin had an eye on Vuyelwa’s work for a while. So when she came to attend Dhaka Lit Fest in November 2016, Shafin convinced her to sit for an interview with me.

I surfed around the internet for what I could find on Vuyelwa. I found some information, as well as a few videos of her performing. The videos, however, could hardly show me of what I saw of her performance in person. I saw an artist with fire and flare, with a voice and things to say. I saw an artist whose conviction I believed in.

In the interview Vuyelwa talked about poetry, language, Johannesberg, blackness, womanness, and her company BLACKGIRLPLOTTING. And Vuyelwa being the great sport that she is, the interview turned out to be up close and personal, candid, and like her work – honest.  

 

Vuyelwa Maluleke

 

Anika Shah: Let’s start with your childhood. What influenced you? How did you come about to write poetry?

Vuyelwa Maluleke: I was actually a very… So I’m a twin. And I think it’s a significant thing to acknowledge because most of my life I’ve spent kind of not talking. My sister’s a very bubbly person, and so she was the bridge between making friends. She made friends and I sat with her, with her friends. (Laughs) And that’s how we kind of navigated until, I think we were in grade three, and then they were like, ‘No, we have to separate them, because every time I shout at one the other one will look at me like I’m the devil.’ So they separated us. And I had to make a more conscious effort to engage with people around me because I didn’t have my sister as a buffer, negotiating spaces for me. Even still, I was terrible at it. I mean, I got better as the years, but I think I gravitated more towards writing because I didn’t speak as much. And I think going to girls’ school really helped. I spent like two years of my high school in a co-ed school where I didn’t speak and I read books and literally just read books and sat in the library like… weirdest, saddest, and I had braces and I had glasses and I was awkward like I was AWKWARD and my skirts were long like… It was a mess! It was an absolute mess. And I always had this twin sister who was bubbly, beautiful, amazing. She still is, that’s just her personality, she’s an extrovert. But I was more introverted. So the comparison would just be inevitable.I suppose gravitating towards writing would have happened eventually. When I got to girls’ school, I auditioned for a drama show, a play. I’m never used to look at people in the eye at all, I always used to look down all the time. I had this really amazing drama teacher who was always shouting like, ‘LOOK AT ME WHEN I TALK TO YOU, OR EMOTE, OR DO SOMETHING!’ And she was always kind of inspiring me to study drama, because I took it as a subject at high school. She was always encouraging of me and for being an artist and trying it out. And in a way I think inadvertently then I just started writing. I didn’t show it to anybody, except my sister. But I had always been writing, performing, doing talent shows, and I just became so much more confident. And able to speak. My tongue was very quick at people, you know. And because I had been wearing glasses for so long, I used to look down, my eyes were very lazy, they were never engaging with anybody. Because I do drama now I have to learn to be more meaningful, to have more meaningful conversations, to not always be looking down. So that’s how it happened and I started writing and then carried on writing quietly by myself. And I got to Wits University and there were slams that were happening. I entered slams. I think the first one that I did I forgot my lines, and I was terrible, I was cliché, I don’t know if I’m still a cliché, I might look back ten years from now and be like oh my GOD I was terrible. I was really horrible, I was horrific, I was every cliché in the book… And I was also copying American, kind of… these Americanisms, so that itself is terrible. I suppose it’s been a process of kind of trying to figure out what my style is and what I’m going to talk about and write about and, you know, that’s how it happened.

AS: But tell me something, what were you thinking? One day you’re sitting at the library, the next day you’re trying out for a drama! It must’ve taken a lot of courage?

VM: It did, it did. I think it’s because there’s a particular kind of distancing. When I’m on the stage, that’s not really me. So it’s like nobody expects me to be amazing, they expect the character to be believable and amazing. There’s  no real pressure on my personal self. So I’m able to detach those roles, quite easily actually. Except in spoken word. In spoken word identity is so important that I don’t know that I could present things without having the “I” and the “me” quite established. But I still am an introvert, it’s just I… I… I know how to talk now! I know how to talk now, I’m better at it.

AS: Does the same thing happen when you’re writing? Do you get to become this other self, or detach yourself? Or is it just with acting?

VM: I think that it’s just with acting. And when I say “detach”, I don’t necessarily mean stand so very outside myself, it’s just I am able to completely remove the responsibility to be perfect. And I think writing… Writing is a sacred space because there are no expectations. It will happen or it won’t. And it usually doesn’t! (Laughs) And that’s also okay, because no one gets to see your failures, they only get to see the final product, and then they’re like, ‘Oh my gosh it’s so amazing’, and you’re like, ‘Oh well, you know, I spent MONTHS actually on this one particular LINE, I’ve BEEN working on it, I’m GLAD you kinda’ like it.’(Laughs) But writing for me is personal, very sacred. There’s something really… I don’t know, I don’t wanna sound too poet-y, but there’s something really magical about it, really divine about it, because sometimes there’s this language and this vocabulary you didn’t know you had that kind of comes out in particular sentences sometimes, and you go like, ‘Oh, that’s… okay. I see how that’s possible.’ And sometimes I look back at poems that I wrote, and I’m like, ‘Mmm, who did you steal that from? Because your thought process is not like that in real life!’(Laughs)

AS: How do you find the difference between reading a poem and someone reciting it to them? Because you’re a performance poet; which one’s better, which one do you like?

VM: I think the medium’s two different things. There’s a particular kind of engagement in performance poetry. I mean, you’re looking directly at the audience at all times. You also have the ability to play with the words, and the way they sound, and to embody character if you want to. And you’re more able to emote. It’s harder to emote holding a piece of paper, because you’re trying to figure out where you are. It’s like, it’s your poem, but you don’t really know it, you’re trying to figure out where you are. I think reading for older generations makes sense, I understand why it exists. But for especially young people, it is important for them to feel like you are present and you’re not just reading them something you think is amazing, they actually need to see you look at them a couple of times sometimes, or feel some kind of engagement with you, until it’s a conversation. It’s not, ‘Okay, you sit there, I’ll tell you things’. And sometimes that’s what readings feel like.

AS: Does it ever make you nervous talking? Performing?

VM: Yes! Oh God, I’m always nervous. I’m always… literally shaking. That’s why sometimes I take my shoes off, because it’s like I’m more stable, nobody can actually see me shaking. I’m always nervous about it. Because it’s like, you never know what to expect, you never know if it will reach, and you don’t know if you’ll fail yourself. And I’ve blanked out a couple of times on stage, so I have a thorough fear of it happening sometimes.

AS: Does performing poems affect your performance every time that you perform it? I mean, it is the same poem that you’re performing, but does is depend on the audience? Does it change the performance?

VM: Yeah, sometimes it does, because people react to different things. So if you’re present enough, you can find that out.There’s something magical about making the poems a public thing. Because then they can stop belonging to me, they can stop being my solo burden. It’s our burden now, we’re sharing this burden, we’re taking spoonfulls of this burden each, taking it home with us. And sometimes there are questions that I cannot answer myself that other people can do when they listen to the poems, and they respond.

AS: So, you tried out competitive poetry.What’s up with that?

VM: (Laughs) I’m actually a very competitive person. I like to win things. And so I just slammed for a couple of years, and then I took a break and did theatre for like a year. Then I came back last year, and I started slamming again. The whole objective was to be in a competitive space, but not use the mold of a competitive slam space. Because, for me, I feel that slam poetry has a particular kind of formula. It’s because of the medium I suppose. Because it’s a social justice space, people are rewarded for particular conversations: race, poverty, rape. So, any topic about identity is rewarded. I was wanting to challenge this space and say, I want to see if I can bring anything at all that I want to bring in to the space, and see if I can be rewarded for that. Some days it works. And some things don’t translate, you know, some days people are like,‘I don’t know what the fuck you’re talking about, I don’t want to listen to you anymore.’ And for me it was like taking a moment and saying that that’s okay. But I think subconsciously in the back of my mind I also really wanted to win something. I thought it would be a meaningful exercise, it would affirm me in some kind of particular way. And I did, I did win. And it wasn’t very affirming. It didn’t validate anything. I had always been writing, I will always write. Winning something doesn’t change anything, it doesn’t change people’s perspective about… it doesn’t change the value of the work. And I suppose I had imagined the value would increase. And I had to be honest about that, that the value on the work would increase, because I had won something. But that’s not necessarily true. Because at the end of the day I need to be the only person valuing the work for myself.

AS: What is it like talking about women? Or do you even identify yourself as a person who talks about or towards women?

VM: This is a thing,I get defensive about questions like that. I think I was asked a question like that once, and I was wondering if… I mean, why do I need to specify that I write about women? Who else am I gonna write about? Outside of that, are men asked, do you write about men?

AS: Maybe they should be!

VM: How are men doing in the world, right? Because everybody is, I suppose, expecting that men are doing very well in the world. And so maybe there’s nothing to write about, because they’re doing so WELL, and women aren’t. So what problems would you like to let us know about? But honestly, I do write about women. I don’t think that’s something that needs to be highlighted. I mean, WHAT do you write about women is a more meaningful question to me, the various kind of stages.

AS: So what do you write about women?

VM: (Laughs) And I also write about country and home and black men and how disappointing they are to me. You know! What do I write about women… Okay, I think I’m gonna be honest and say a lot of my writing is in first person at first when I write it. But by the time I perform it, I try to find a way to remove myself from it in some kind of way. So I’m interested in how black women are resisting and surviving, in South Africa in particular. I don’t think I can fit the entire women of color thing into my poems, I think that is a reaction somebody else will have. I can’t say, well, I write about all women, and I think all women can fit, well NO, I don’t. I only know a few women, I write about THOSE women, in particular. Conversations that I have with friends sometimes will end up in poems. I’m interested in black women’s resistance and survival and how they negotiate life, I’m interested in how we are fragile as well, and soft… and hard as hell also.

AS: Do you think sexism, or even racism is still prevalent in South Africa? Because historically speaking, it once was, like it is everywhere. Is there anything particular that enrages you, or influences you to speak out about it?

VM: I think being alive as a black woman in South Africa is to be in a perpetual state of rage. ‘Cause somebody is always testing you. (Laughs) Honest to GOD! And now, honestly, for me to be happy, sometimes I need to ignore that certain things happen during the day. And yes, racism is extremely prevalent. It’s not in the policies, it’s not in the legislature, but it’s like these micro-aggressions that you can’t actually point out but you feel in interpersonal relationships. Just walking down the streets sometimes, and someone laughs or says, ‘Hey, that’s it, walk faster,’ or looks at you and you’re like, ‘What? You’re in my country, WHAT?’ Men are horrific. Men are trash. You know those shirts that say “Men are Trash”? That’s what I want to wear on a regular basis, like a Monday to Sunday outfit of “Men are Trash”. ‘Cause they really are! And black ones in particular are really disappointing to me. And how they are willing to have a one-sided view. Black men are willing to talk about racism, but as soon as you say, ‘Okay, I’ll talk about racism, cool, but the problem here is…’ when I begin to talk about gender, then they’re like, ‘No, can we have one conversation at a time?’ But we can’t.Because the problem is I am black AND I am woman. So I am facing this double oppression that is horrific for me. Just walking down the streets is a problem in South Africa. Because somebody is grabbing you, touching you, saying something to you, and you are public property in any given moment. And that’s very frustrating. I don’t wanna keep writing poems about that shit because I want that shit to end! And I also wanna reach for some joy at some point. I wanna write a poem about a fucking balloon.

AS: Here’s hoping someday you will! What’s your take on feminism? Do you identify with it? I mean, feminism has different versions, how do you incorporate with that?

VM: I think… Yeah, feminism is important. But depending on race and location… For black women in particular, black feminism is extremely important. But, which brand of black feminism? Is it the kind that leaves other women out? Says, well, if you do ABC and D, or pander into the heterosexual male gaze… But what if I actually like to actually go out and be pretty? And just have people look at me? That’s a choice that I should be able to make by myself, right? We are always talking about agency in feminism. Isn’t that part of my agency? Who are you to explain to me what a feminist looks like? So, I don’t know. I mean, I’m trying to do some reading in feminism. Currently Audrey Lorde’s essays I’m trying to go through and re-read, over and over again. Because I also don’t have the language to describe what kind of feminism I do. But I know that in my daily life I’m practicing a particular kind of agency, I’m demanding things as well. And there’s something important in being able to demand things. Our mothers have been feminists. We just think they haven’t because we consider feminism to be a particular kind of thing. But they’ve made particular choices in their lives. And even subservience, submission is a choice. And as long as you are making a conscious choice to do that, and do other things, as long as the choice is yours, then you’re a feminist. My mother doesn’t have the language for that nonsense, but she is the most staunch feminist. She is the most, ‘Get married at your own time, have your babies at your own time, live your life, I didn’t get you this education so that you can get married today, get it together!’ She’s very much about that. Because now I have started a company called BLACKGIRLPLOTTING, which literally talks about black women all the time, I have to make a conscious effort to find out about feminism. Because people wonder if we are. My partner definitely isn’t. My creative partner, she says, ‘I don’t have the language for that kind of movement, which is Xhosa. I practice what you call feminism, but that’s not what I’m going to call it. I’m going to call it trying to survive and resist.’

AS: What ticks you off? What makes you ABSOLUTELY enraged?

VM: There’s a hierarchy. So it’s like white men, white women… black men are somewhere in the middle of that. (Laughs) And I think I’m pissed off that sometimes I’m not very comfortable in spaces, I’m pissed off that I can’t engage as freely. I am pissed off by class. And I am middle class, so I have privilege at the same time, right? I am pissed off that I am having to re-learn my mother tongue because I don’t know it. I am pissed off that I’m writing in English. But it’s the only language that I know enough to use for expression. There’s something about that that often feels inauthentic, but it’s also the only tool I have. So in ways I have to try and write my blackness for myself in a language that is not mine but is mine.

AS: Does that happen with everyone? Is it a contemporary thing that you learn English more than your own language?

VM: I think now my nieces are probably feeling it a lot more because they really cannot engage in a full conversation of mother tongue. My family is like very mix, so they speak Xhosa and Tswana and that’s just like a mishmash of that kind of language, you’re always hearing it fly by. And my nieces can’t manage conversation in it. I can at least manage conversation. But can I write poetry? No.

AS: But why is that happening?

VM: Because the education system expects that black learners speak English so well. And part of that expectation also means that they encourage parents to not speak mother tongue at home, so that you are able to learn faster, because it’s your second language, and it’s white girls’ first language. And in that they don’t see the way they are colonizing and kind of really washing our parents off our tongues, washing culture off our tongues, because we all sound like some mishmash of this English that our parents don’t sound like… Our parents don’t sound like us at all! And sometimes it’s like if you close your eyes and you listen to someone speak you can’t tell if they’re white or black because of the accent, because it’s so close to whiteness. And that’s the thing we’ve been taught to reach for always.

AS: Does it bother you?

VM: I mean, now, yes. Now, because I’m aware. Because the kind of violence that inflicts on a person, and because now you’re having to buy back your culture, and that’s fucking crazy. When I was in school, it didn’t, because I went to a moderately mixed race multiracial school, and so it didn’t matter to me that I couldn’t speak mother tongue proper, or I couldn’t write it. Because everybody around me was speaking English. Everybody around me was middle class. Yes, there might have been a personal scholarship, but it was almost as if there was no difference between us. But there was, because the rest of us lived in the townshed, and they lived in TOWN, you know, in these big houses. There was a difference, but the school space made it seem like there wasn’t, like we all had the same opportunities, we were all going to make the same kind of lives. But as soon as you reach high school, you realize it’s different. Because, you’re not driving to varsity, you’re taking public transport to varsity, THEY are driving to varsity. YOU can barely afford varsity sometimes. Even if your parents save money, varsity’s like hell of expensive. So yeah, now I’m pissed. Now that I’m aware I’m very pissed. I think my uncle is the person who flagged it for me. There was one time when we were playing music, and he was like, ‘Why’re you playing white music?’ I can’t even remember what the track was. And I was like, ‘There is no such thing as white music. There is just music!’ (Laughs) and he was like, ‘Nah… Dude, you’re so white, you’re so colonized. Do you think these people are your friends? Wait until you get to varsity. You people are forced to interact with each other. Literally, you’re forced. It’s normalized. And as soon as you get into a space where people have to choose you, they will not choose to interact with you at all.’ And he was right. He was really right. There was something really uncomfortable about getting into university. I mean, like literally, zero white friends. Because there was no common ground. I didn’t know what to talk about. I really didn’t.

AS: But now that you’re aware of it, how do you make peace with that?

VM: I write them into poems.

AS: So basically you turn it into a form of resistance against colonization?

VM: Yeah. Kind of.I have a poem called “Your Sister’s Going to Europe”, which is very much like a language poem. And it was literally based on… My niece was going to Europe. None of us had been to Europe, and she had this like a week-long tour of something to different places. Her grandmother was asking her questions about Europe. And my niece, she’s very bubbly, and she was speaking so fast, and the look on her grandmother’s face was kind of confused because she couldn’t catch all of this English that was moving really really quickly. And there’s something about speaking English to our parents who really don’t… Yes they do know English, but we know it better. And so we move faster than they do. We don’t take time to have a proper conversation and sometimes to see them confused is kind of perplexing because they paid for this education. So it’s like, in a way you’re othering them. And you don’t notice, you don’t see it. But when you’re standing outside, you can see the othering happen.

AS: Let’s talk about drama and performance poetry some more. Do you find them very similar, or not?

VM: I mean, they have similar principles.I know how to speak, I know how to be articulate, I know the way to perform, the tools of performance,I understand them. BUT, performance poetry is very different, it’s actually very hard. I think it’s hard, it’s the hardest thing, because it’s so personal. Because it really requires you to be emotionally available for it in that moment. And if you’re not honest, you’re not authentic, people know, they can see it. There’d be times when you’re just reciting something, you know the rhythms, the words, and you’re just doing it. But you know you’re not being honest, or truthful. And spoken word audiences are very particular about honesty and truthfulness. You can have all these effects, but, they’re like, ‘But I didn’t see YOU. So, it doesn’t matter to me.’

AS: South African literature has J. M. Coetze, probably the most popular writer from there whom everyone is familiar with. Do you like his writings?

V M: I’m in a moment in my life where I don’t read white people. So I don’t read white people, no. I read black women. I am actually making a conscious effort to read black women. And after that I’ll think about reading white women. And AFTER that I’ll think about white men.

AS: What about black men?

V M: Oh yeah, black men should totally come before white women, or somewhere in there. But white men are at the end of the line.

AS: So who are your favorite writers right now? Who are you reading?

VM: I keep going back to some Lucille Clifton poems. And Sonia Sanchez.I fell in love withNtozakeShange’s style of writing. She writes the accent into her poems. The punctuation, how the word sounds, she writes that into it. And so you sound American when you read it out. I really like that style of writing. I’m thinking of ways of exploring writing how my mother speaks into poems. Because how I speak doesn’t matter ‘cause it’s white. I speak white! There’s nothing different about my dialect of speaking. But my mother is different because her accent is different, and the words that she chooses and her expressions are different. So, yeah… those are the people right now.

AS: What are your inspirations? What are your fears?

VM: What are my fears? I don’t know if this is like a very Capricorn thing, but my ultimate fear (Laughs) is that I will not amount to anything. And I don’t know what “amounting” might look like. I don’t think I’ll ever run out of writing. I think I could do that even if I was poor, I would still write something somewhere. Not that I’m rich, I think I’m poor right now. Still writing. When I am outside in the world, I fear that I’m not safe. When I’m speaking in public places, I fear that I’m not articulate enough, that I don’t sound like I’ve read enough books (Laughs). When I’m writing I fear that I might never write again, even though I’m quite certain that I’ll keep writing something, even if nobody will see it, I’ll certainly be writing. My inspirations… I really like being alive! I know my poems don’t sound like it. (Laughs) But I really enjoy life. I am inspired by my friends, I make really wonderful friendships actually. Really wonderful women, black women at that. And those conversations inspire me a lot. And being alive. I do like figuring it out. I am inspired by vulnerability as well, as of late.

AS: When you say that when you’re out in the world you don’t feel safe, what do you mean by that?

VM: I use public transport a lot. I’m terrified of driving, ‘cause I’m terrified of hurting other people on the road. And the thing is that, I learned how to drive so that I would feel more comfortable… So, I use public transport a lot, and I’m always wearing earphones. And this is something South African women talk about a lot, how you are always wearing earphones so that you can sort of let people know that I don’t want you to talk to me. Because otherwise if you don’t have the earphones then there is no polite way to say actually, I am tired and I don’t feel like talking. You’re always supposed to be polite and it’s rude to say no. And so the only way you can say no is by disengaging with the world completely. Or being on your phone and having social media. So it’s like… I don’t feel safe because there are men around. (Laughs) And sometimes I don’t feel safe because I feel like I’m still an awkward person, and I need to figure out what my position is in a particular kind of space and that is very tiring and exhausting, kind of trying to negotiate the space. The one time that I did go out with my friends, and this actually happened in my neighborhood, this guy was wanting to talk to us. And we were just girls, we were out together. There was a group of guys that we knew from the neighborhood who were there as well, but I was like, we don’t want any guy kind of thing, just girls here, so can you please leave us alone. And I suppose my face is not very friendly. So he left. And then we just carried on. And the next thing I know is I’m just feeling this slap across my face. And this guy is slapping me. I was shocked. I was very shocked. And before then I had thought to myself I can protect myself, no guy is gonna touch me. After that I realized that I actually can’t. That guy was huge, he was bigger than me. And there was nothing that I could do to protect myself from that. And for me, I am very aware, I don’t go to places where there aren’t bouncers, I really don’t. If there isn’t a bouncer there, I don’t go there. Because male trouble is inevitable. And I don’t go to predominantly Afrikaans spaces. Because you’re asking for trouble in that space. So you learn from experience, man, to be afraid of things. Because sometimes you think you are invisible, and you are invincible, but you’re not.

AS: You didn’t see that coming at all?

VM: Dude, no! And thenI was crying, and I was a mess. And then I told my sister, who is like this thin girl. Then my sister went and fetched that guy and was like, ‘Apologize right now! Say you’re sorry.’ And I was like, ‘Actually, I don’t want your sorry, ‘cause sorry means shit. If I can slap you that’s when I will feel good.’ And he was like, ‘No, that’s not gonna happen, but I’m sorry, ‘cause I’m drunk.’ And you know, I was like… I drink too! You see me slapping niggers? It was unreal.

AS: What are your plans for the future? What are you working on, what’s getting you excited?

VM: I get so scared when people ask that. Because it feels like if I say I’m gonna do this thing, I’m gonna fail. ‘Cause it was like fetching my visa. For weeks I was saying to my mother, tomorrow I’m gonna wake up and get my visa. And I didn’t do it! And then again, tomorrow I’m gonna wake up and get my visa. Until finally the organizers emailed me, do you have a visa? And then finally I was like okay, I have to get my visa today. So I feel like every time I say something, I purposefully sabotage myself. Or maybe it’s particular things. This year my goals were to start a company, and I did, called BLACKGIRLPLOTTING, and to stage my own shows, and we did, called No One Wants a Black Woman with a Mouth. We are definitely looking to travel the show around South Africa, and maybe outside of South Africa. I have hopes and dreams. (Laughs) But maybe I should keep them to myself so that nobody’s keeping score like, ‘Mmm, she said… but look where she is’, you know?

AS: Okay, that’s fair, that makes sense. Tell me more about your company, about BLACKGIRLPLOTTING.

VM: We stage theatre shows. Musing, poetry, physical theater, multimedia, music. It’s the two of us, it’s always just the two of us, and that’s how it’sgonna be for a while until we really establish what we are doing. Because it’s BLACKGIRLPLOTTING, we are always plotting with different black girls. And so we have a singer, Leomile,a jazz singer, she made soundtrack for us. A friend of mine, Keitumetsi,made another soundtrack for us and that was cool. Our director is a black woman,our stage manager is a black woman. The person who is doing our marketing is a black woman. And so it has been meaningful to collaborate with black women only. At the same time it has been really difficult and testing, because spaces don’t have that many black women. So if you go into a theatre space and say okay, this is BLACKGIRLPLOTTING, and we require that from beginning to end the person who’s stage managing, the person who’s running our lights, the person who’s reading is a black woman. And they will say to you, we don’t have that. We just don’t have what you’re asking for and so you have to make concessions. So right now what we’re finding is we’re having to keep repeating ourselves so that the day that everybody knows who BLACKGIRLPLOTTING is, they will also know the conditions of BLACKGIRLPLOTTING. If you want us to perform, you better make sure you have a team of black women. It’s about having the only people who benefit from the space be black women at all times.

 

Vuyelwa Maluleke

 

 

A portion of Vuyelwa Maluleke’s performance at Dhaka Lit Fest 2016:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ROKvs7S3cGE&feature=youtu.be

For more on BLACKGIRLPLOTTING: https://blackgirlplotting.tumblr.com/

Photo and Video Credit: Pranabesh Das