The Debatable Legacy Of 'Colored Girls'

More

I was just reading PB's critique of Tyler Perry's role in For Colored Girls Who've Considered Suicide When The Rainbow Is Enuf. PB has a beef, though not quite the standard one. But my question is much simpler. I keep hearing people claim that Perry is desecrating a classic of the genre. But I have to ask a slightly rude question, Is Colored Girls a great play? 


I haven't read it in years, but even as a younger person I remember thinking it was somewhat over the top and heavy-handed. Hence when I heard that Perry was involved my thoughts were more along the lines of "Of course" or "Perfect." I could be off on this and I'd like to hear some discussion around this. 

I think the "Elvis is hero to most" argument holds some weight--in other words, Shange certainly gave voice to sentiments that weren't really spoken in high places. Colored Girls is certainly the sort of thing you read when you're getting  conscious, and it surely is the kind of play that really speaks to young black girls, in an important and significant way. But is it a classic?
Jump to comments
Presented by

Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

What's the Number One Thing We Could Do to Improve City Life?

A group of journalists, professors, and non-profit leaders predict the future of livable, walkable cities


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Entertainment

From This Author

Just In