Breathing is the foundation for black performance. Attention to whooping practices in Blackpentecostal church services makes explicit the ways breathing can be aestheticized in the cause of producing justice. Breathing was foundational to enslavement narratives; for example, the case of breathing is only mentioned in explicit, intense forms, such as during violence, recorded often as “heart-rending shrieks.” In this chapter, breathing is considered as taken up specifically in black performance as a critique of the ways breath was stolen through theological-philosophical violence.
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