Uses of the Erotic: The Erotic as Power

“Once we begin to feel deeply all the aspects of our lives, we begin to demand from ourselves and from our life-pursuits that they feel in accordance with that joy which we know ourselves to be capable of. Our erotic knowledge empowers us, becomes a lens through which we scrutinize all aspects of our existence.” — Audre Lorde, “Uses of the Erotic”*

The erotic is individual and communal. It’s creativity, intuition, deep participation, and pleasure. And each taste of erotic experience raises the bar on every other aspect of life, making it harder to settle for suffering. The erotic is power, a critical catalyst for social change. **

How do we learn to harness the wisdom of the erotic? Can we know ourselves without knowing the full extent of our erotic power and value? What can the erotic offer for Black feminist futures? And how do we make social justice the most pleasurable human experience?

Church is in session & our Lorde wrote the sermon. Get hot and heavy, intimate and intellectual with us, as we kick off the summer programming theme, Critical Intuition!

This #praisetheLordeSunday is brought to you on a Thursday by the Free Black Women’s Library LA & WCCW.

* Audre Lorde’s essay ”Uses of the Erotic” was originally delivered as a speech in 1978, and printed in Sister Outsider: Essays & Speeches by Audre Lorde (Ten Speed Press)

** Paraphrased from adrienne maree brown: http://adriennemareebrown.net/2014/02/12/wherein-i-write-about-sex-5-tangible-tools-of-a-pleasure-activist/. For a great annotation of Lorde’s essay and more good thoughts on the intersections of pleasure and social justice, check out Pleasure Activism (AK Press)

 

The Free Black Women’s Library LA is LA’s first trading, mobile pop-up library centering Black women authors. Follow for events, books, Black thoughts, and ways to Praise the Lorde every Sunday: @thefreeblackwomenslibrary_la

NK is the Programming Director at WCCW and the co-host of bitchface podcast, an experimental audio project powered by the erotic. @ghooostheart

Accessibility information for this event: WCCW has a 36” wide ramp at our front entrance and a stairway with 8 steps and a rail. There are 2 gender neutral restrooms. One restroom is wheelchair accessible, with a handrail. We provide scent free soaps and encourage guests to attend our events scent free. If you require ASL interpretation, CART, interpretation for a language other than English, supervised childcare, or have any other access needs or questions, please contact info@wccw.us at least two weeks in advance. It is our practice to do everything we can to create a safe and accessible space.

Childcare for this event: We do our best to provide low-cost, on-site childcare for our events when requested at least a week in advance. If you are interested in childcare for this event, please fill out this form.

All members get 20% off paid programming. A limited number of free spots are also available for Warrior & Goddess level members. Email info@wccw.us to inquire about free tickets.

Our program costs go directly towards compensation of the instructors and staffers who work the event. We want to make programming as accessible as possible to anyone who is interested, however, so we offer volunteer opportunities in exchange for membership, as well as free community tickets to each program (number varies depending on capacity of the class). Email info@wccw.us for more info or to find out more about these opportunities for a specific event.