Happy Birthday

To Melody.

Here’s a special NP.comic to celebrate the occaison.

The other part of this early morning update is quite interesting. There was a Nat quote in the Allure article, from a couple months back, that was quite controversial. It was quite obvious to me that she didn’t mean what was implied but to settle the matter she has written a letter to Allure. It’s published in the latest edition. Thanks to Sommerfly for the transcription.

I am writing to offer my most sincere apologies for not being as articulate as I could have been regarding my thoughts on W.E.B. DuBois?s The Souls of Black Folks [?Natalie Would?, August]. My lack of eloquence, combined with my words being taken out of context, led to the printing of a statement of mine that I found personally offensive: ?I?m not black, but I know what it feels like.?

If I had spoken more articulately, I might have conveyed what I truly feel: I could never know what is like to be a black American. I could only imagine what it?s like to be anything other than what my own experience has been.

The ?it? I was referring to when I said, ?I know what it feels like,? was not intended to signify that I know ?how black people feel,? but rather that I know what DuBois?s concept of double-consciousness feels like, in variation. Had my quote included what I actually said preceding that statement, perhaps my meaning would have been clearer.

DuBois writes about how black Americans often view the world simultaneously from other people?s points of view (from the outside in), as well as from their own points of view (from the inside out), because they are so aware of how they are scrutinized by other people and prejudices other might have against them.

Of course, the prejudices people might have against me are extremely different that those they might have against black people as a group, to say the least. There is absolutely no comparison in the content of the double-consciousness described by DuBois and the one that I, as an actress in the public eye, experience. I merely related to the overall framework of his idea ? what is feels like to see always see yourself from within and from without, knowing how other people view you and judge you and knowing how you view and judge yourself, at the same time.

I apologize for being insulting or ignorant in any way. I tried to explain my experience using a concept written by someone light-years more intelligent and eloquent than I am, whose writing made me feel like someone else had been through a similar psychological experience to mine in some way. I clearly did not express myself well enough to deserve the right to quote a man as brilliant as DuBois.

I do believe, however, that it is in small ways we relate to each other, even if we do so inaccurately, that we build our relationships with each other and realize our common humanity. I understand that we are essentially ignorant in actually knowing another?s life, but imagine another?s life is the basic way we relate to one another.

I sincerely, and with my deepest regrets for offending any readers, apologize and apologize and apologize. This has upset me deeply, and I will do my best to be more thoughtful and articulate in the future.

Natalie Portman

Always interesting to read her own writing.

That’s it for now but we’ve got lots of goodies for later.