By Deborah Willis
As a tender South African lady of approximately twenty, Saartjie Baartman, the so-called "Hottentot Venus," was once dropped at London and put on show in 1810. Clad within the Victorian identical of a physique stocking, and paraded during the streets and on degree in a cage she grew to become a human spectacle in London and Paris. Baartman's particular body grew to become the item of ridicule, interest, medical inquiry, and hope until eventually and after her untimely demise. The determine of Sarah Baartman used to be diminished to her sexual components. Black Venus 2010 lines Baartman's reminiscence in our collective histories, in addition to her symbolic heritage within the building and id of black ladies as artists, performers, and icons. The wide-ranging essays, poems, and photographs in Black Venus 2010 characterize essentially the most compelling responses to Baartman. each grapples with the long-lasting legacy of this younger African girl who without end continues to be a touchstone for black ladies. individuals contain: Elizabeth Alexander, Holly Bass, Petrushka A Bazin, William Jelani Cobb, Lisa Gail Collins, Renee Cox, J. Yolande Daniels, Carole Boyce Davies, Leon de Wailly, Manthia Diawara, Diana Ferrus, Cheryl Finley, Nikky Finney, Kianga ok. Ford, Terri Francis, Sander Gilman, Renee eco-friendly, pleasure Gregory, Lyle Ashton Harris, Michael D. Harris, Linda Susan Jackson, Kellie Jones, Roshini Kempadoo, Simone Leigh, Zine Magubane, E. Ethelbert Miller, Robin Mitchell, Charmaine Nelson, Tracey Rose, Radcliffe Roye, Bernadette Searle, Lorna Simpson, Debra S. Singer, Penny Siopis, Hank Willis Thomas, Kara Walker, Michele Wallace, Carla Williams, Carrie Mae Weems, J. T. Zealy, and the editor.
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Extra resources for Black Venus 2010: They Called Her Hottentot
Billroth’s Handbook of Gynecological Diseases links the Hottentot with the lesbian; here the link is between two other models of sexual deviancy, the prostitute and the lesbian. Both are seen as possessing physical signs that set them apart from the normal. 40 Lombroso accepts all of Tarnowsky’s perceptions of the prostitute and articulates one further The Hottentot and the Prostitute 23 subtext of central importance, a subtext made apparent by the plates in his book. For two of the plates illustrate the Hottentot’s “apron” and steatopygia.
1897), 348– 349. 43. Ellis, Psychology of Sex, 4:164. 44. Guglielmo Ferrero [Guillaume Ferrero], “L’atavisme de la prostitution,” Revue scientifique (Paris, 1892), 136–41. 45. Abele De Blasio, “Steatopigia in prostitute,” Archivio di psichiatria 26 (1905): 257–264. 46. Jefferson commented on the heightened sensuality of the black in slavery in his Notes from Virginia (1782); Diderot, in his posthumously published fictional Supplément au voyage de Bougainville (1796), represented the heightened sexuality of the inhabitants of Tahiti as examples of the nature of sexuality freed from civilization.
But when they age, their “strong jaws and cheek-bones, and their masculine aspect . . ” Time changes the physiognomy of the prostitute, just as it does her genitalia, which become more and more diseased as she ages. For Pauline Tarnowsky, the appearance of the prostitute and her sexual identity are pre-established in her heredity. What is most striking is that as she ages, the prostitute begins to appear more and more mannish. Billroth’s Handbook of Gynecological Diseases links the Hottentot with the lesbian; here the link is between two other models of sexual deviancy, the prostitute and the lesbian.