Join us on November 13, 2023 at 11:20 am for Dr. Destiny Crockett’s presentation “before she traded all her girl”: Black Girlishness in the Photography of Carrie Mae Weems.
This presentation analyzes performances of Black girlhood—which I call Black girlishness—in the photography of Carrie Mae Weems. I identify key characteristics that recognizably define Black girlishness: gesture, fight, and shine. I argue that these concepts inform African American gender performance as it relates to innocence and age. This includes the performances of Black girlishness by African American femme women and representations of African American girls in Weems’s After Manet, Kitchen Table Series, and the Ain’t Jokin Series. I consider how the dynamics of what Nicole Fleetwood calls “excess flesh” shift in African American women’s photographic representations of Black girls.