In order to discuss and possibly even enjoy The Colored Museum, we have to first agree on the definition of satire.
The use of humor, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.
Oftentimes people mistake parody for satire and vice versa. While both use comedy, parody pokes fun with the intent to make laugh, while satire, while funny, its intent is to be provocative and thought-provoking. This play was the first play I performed in. I was 18 years old, fresh from home, and a journalism major. This play, the provocative nature of its satirical pieces, and the fact that this satire was unapologetically Black; changed my life. I found myself, at a young age, having heightened discourse with professors in social science, political science, biology, administrators, you name it, from all over the campus.
Conversations are difficult.
They are difficult with people you love. So, you have to assume that they are even more difficult with those you may feel you have no skin in the game with, but humanity is that skin. We share this rock, this planet together, and the more we can lean into the discomfort, the easier it is to get comfortable with that which is not.
Unfortunately, the themes interrogated in The Colored Museum are not installations frozen in time. The themes are still just as relevant today, if not more so now. However, what has become abundantly clear to me is that through the pain there is still ultimately the fight for joy and specifically black joy. The world doesn't know what unaffected and interrupted black joy is. I don't think the world would be able to contain that energy.
If it could, then why does the universe work so hard against allowing us JOY?
The Colored Museum tries to answer that, at the very least it begins the conversation for you. How will you finish it?