The writer and filmmaker Kathleen Collins died in 1988, at the age of 46 — young, brilliant and, for the most part, unknown.
It was a tragic if not entirely unusual fate. What was striking was how instantly her work was embraced after it was rediscovered — like a missing piece somehow anticipated and long yearned for.
In 2015, her film “Losing Ground,” which had shown at festivals in 1982, had an official wider release and was heralded as a pillar of American independent cinema. The next year, “Whatever Happened to Interracial Love?,” a collection of her short stories, written in the 1960s, lampooning racism as well as racial pieties of all kinds, was published for the first time, to much praise. Now a new book has arrived, “Notes From a Black Woman’s Diary,” a grab bag of letters, diary entries, short stories, plays and screenplays (including “Losing Ground”).
Let me get my grousing out of the way. The revival has been slightly shoddy. Some of the stories and plays are drafts, at best. The collections contain little in the way of biographical information — no context for when particular pieces were produced or reasons for their inclusion. These omissions prove especially frustrating in the case of the new book. In interviews, Collins’s daughter (and editor), Nina Lorez Collins, has described coming across packets of her mother’s correspondence — “I could practically trace the arc of her development as a woman, as an artist, as a mother” — as well as a diary of her final year, as she succumbed to breast cancer. Why serve us such slender portions? We see only smatterings of the writing she alludes to and none of the truly interesting letters. Without any explanation, the selection feels desultory, designed to show off the artist’s range, rather than her strengths.
This is admittedly my greed talking. For those under Collins’s spell, our plaint will always be the same: more. Give us more — more letters, more diary entries, more careful curation of the work. What we really want for her is more life. And more art, because what we have — even when raw, unfinished or this carelessly presented — is dazzling.
A character in “Losing Ground,” an older actress, makes this point wryly: “I’m not longing to do ‘Macbeth,’” she says, “but I’d love to play a real 60-year-old Negro lady who thinks more about men than God.” In an essay in The Times on recent “racial justice cinema,” including “The Hate U Give,” “Black Panther” and “BlacKkKlansman,” Reggie Ugwu observed the continuation of this tendency toward stock or larger-than-life storylines: “The films’ common dependence on the tropes of superhero stories and revenge fantasies, whether explicit or in disguise, suggests the difficulty of making reality-based cinema out of the history we’re currently living through.”
Collins had no such trouble (although getting her films seen was another matter). There was nothing binary in her characters, her thinking or her desires. She wanted it all, all the complication. The best training to be a writer, she once said, was to keep a diary of moments of discomfort and dishonesty. In her notebooks, she refers to fullness instead of happiness (“It has been the fullest, the most pleasing of times,” she wrote). There is a powerful drive to encounter the world in every dimension, to use herself to the hilt: “leaving nothing untapped. That is what it is all about: the excesses, the anxiety, the restlessness, the pain,” she wrote, “carrying around in me this irrepressible need to fulfill myself in every way possible.”
In the stories collected in “Whatever Happened to Interracial Love?,” we encountered Collins the sharp, skillful satirist, especially where respectability politics were concerned. In “Notes From a Black Woman’s Diary,” we see her imagination spill more freely — in quick character sketches and case studies in tension, like the one-act play “The Reading,” about an argument that breaks out between a white woman and a black woman in the waiting room of their psychic, or the story “Nina Simone,” about a love triangle told from the roving perspectives of a black woman, her white husband and the black man with whom she’s carrying on a flirtation.
“I’m on shaky ground,” a character says in “Losing Ground.” The acting notes read: “upset, but laughing” — as neat an encapsulation of Collins as you could wish for. The movie’s title itself, I realize now, is beautifully, characteristically ambivalent. Does “losing ground” mean to fall or fly? In this stylish, morally disheveling work, there might be less of a distinction than you think.B:
今期买猴输尽光上期猴儿出了山【古】【代】【氏】【族】【三】【清】【系】【列】【的】【两】【位】【国】【王】【同】【时】【开】【枪】。【那】【种】【力】【量】【实】【在】【太】【可】【怕】【了】。【化】【身】【的】【光】【芒】【覆】【盖】【了】【整】【个】【天】【空】，【让】【所】【有】【四】【面】【八】【方】【的】【僧】【侣】【都】【紧】【张】【不】【安】，【仿】【佛】【世】【界】【末】【日】【就】【要】【来】【临】【了】。 “【轰】！” 【魔】【族】【国】【王】【在】《【天】【魔】【经】》【中】【扮】【演】【了】【超】【级】【化】【身】，【魔】【法】【之】【光】【为】3000【万】。 【舒】【拉】【家】【族】【的】【国】【王】【首】【先】【挥】【舞】【着】【他】【祖】【先】【的】【武】【器】。【他】【的】【力】【量】【令】【人】【震】【惊】
【乔】【子】【雪】【正】【要】【联】【系】【人】【送】【曹】【阿】【姨】【的】【时】【候】，【陈】【玉】【突】【然】【说】【让】【她】【去】【送】【曹】【阿】【姨】，【让】【乔】【子】【雪】【还】【是】【多】【点】【时】【间】【劝】【劝】【洛】【云】【梦】【去】【医】【院】【的】【事】【情】。 “【三】【小】【姐】【身】【子】【不】【好】，【要】【多】【注】【意】【休】【息】，【我】【这】【老】【太】【太】【没】【用】，【什】【么】【也】【帮】【不】【了】，【我】【回】【去】【一】【定】【要】【求】【菩】【萨】【保】【佑】【你】【和】【乔】【总】【这】【样】【的】【好】【人】。” “【曹】【阿】【姨】，【你】【能】【别】【回】【去】【吗】？【在】【这】【里】【多】【好】【啊】，【我】【觉】【得】【你】【在】【这】【里】【也】【开】【心】
【随】【着】【时】【间】【过】【去】。 【流】【泪】【不】【已】【的】【幽】【雪】【儿】，【也】【停】【止】【了】【哭】【泣】。 【徐】【凡】【断】【掉】【的】【手】【脚】，【也】【慢】【慢】【长】【了】【出】【来】，【那】【煞】【白】【的】【脸】【色】，【也】【恢】【复】【到】【了】【正】【常】。 【一】【旁】【观】【看】【的】【柳】【依】【云】，【虽】【然】【保】【持】【着】【沉】【默】。 【刚】【才】【在】【帐】【篷】【中】，【她】【也】【已】【经】【见】【过】【一】【次】【了】，【但】【是】【这】【次】【看】【到】【徐】【凡】【的】【手】【脚】，【这】【么】【快】【长】【出】。 【与】【她】【在】【帐】【篷】【中】，【看】【到】【伤】【势】【恢】【复】【的】【感】【觉】，【是】【不】【一】【样】今期买猴输尽光上期猴儿出了山【杨】【旭】【看】【我】【的】【表】【情】，【没】【有】【丝】【毫】【怀】【疑】，【他】【从】【小】【到】【大】【都】【那】【么】【相】【信】【我】，【没】【有】【一】【点】【怀】【疑】【过】，【这】【次】【也】【一】【样】。 【杨】【旭】【点】【了】【点】【头】，【温】【柔】【的】【说】【道】:“【既】【然】【你】【不】【知】【道】，【今】【天】【我】【告】【诉】【你】【你】【现】【在】【知】【道】【了】【吧】？【以】【后】【你】【和】【他】【保】【持】【距】【离】，【有】【些】【事】【情】【如】【果】【你】【知】【道】【了】【你】【会】【后】【悔】【会】【难】【过】【的】，【我】【不】【希】【望】【你】【受】【伤】【害】，【更】【不】【希】【望】【你】【喜】【欢】【上】【他】。” 【杨】【旭】【的】【话】【说】【的】【我】【一】
【林】【泽】【此】【时】【对】【妖】【精】【森】【林】【已】【有】【所】【了】【解】，【凤】【凰】【山】【是】【在】【扇】【形】【的】【一】【侧】，【而】【龙】【皇】【分】【身】【奔】【行】【的】【方】【向】【是】【扇】【形】【的】【正】【中】【间】。 【妖】【精】【越】【来】【越】【多】，【而】【且】【相】【互】【间】【开】【始】【厮】【杀】，【不】【仅】【是】【不】【同】【妖】【族】【间】【厮】【杀】，【同】【族】【间】【也】【是】【乱】【战】。 【林】【泽】【没】【想】【到】【妖】【精】【同】【族】【间】【也】【不】【团】【结】，【大】【概】【是】【因】【为】【变】【人】【变】【的】，【没】【学】【到】【好】【的】，【倒】【是】【学】【会】【内】【斗】。 【龙】【皇】【分】【身】【直】【接】【飞】【上】【一】【座】【直】【插】【云】
【这】【刻】，【秦】【风】【的】【眼】【珠】【子】【都】【瞪】【圆】【了】。 “【兄】【弟】【们】，【操】【家】【伙】！” 【这】【时】，【只】【听】【见】【那】【个】【青】【春】【痘】【少】【年】【大】【叫】【声】。 【秦】【风】【就】【静】【静】【的】【看】【着】【他】【们】【在】【装】【逼】，【等】【这】【些】【中】【们】【知】【道】【酆】【都】【鬼】【城】【的】【厉】【害】【之】【后】，【就】【会】【死】【心】，【乖】【乖】【的】【回】【家】【该】【干】【什】【么】【就】【干】【什】【么】。 【不】【过】，【秦】【风】【并】【没】【有】【离】【开】，【而】【是】【静】【静】【的】【看】【着】【他】【们】，【毕】【竟】，【这】【酆】【都】【鬼】【城】【阴】【气】【深】【深】，【这】【些】【普】【通】
【欧】【阳】【天】【他】【这】【里】【一】【个】【个】【的】【人】【去】【看】，【不】【多】【时】，【他】【这】【里】【便】【也】【是】【看】【到】【了】【叶】【辰】【了】。 【叶】【辰】【他】【看】【着】【欧】【阳】【天】【向】【着】【自】【己】【这】【里】【看】【了】【过】【来】，【他】【这】【里】【也】【是】【没】【有】【丝】【毫】【的】【表】【情】【变】【化】【的】，【心】【中】【这】【也】【是】【没】【有】【任】【何】【的】【变】【化】。 【因】【为】，【在】【他】【看】【来】，【欧】【阳】【天】【这】【是】【看】【不】【出】【来】【自】【己】【隐】【藏】【的】【这】【个】【光】【球】【的】！ 【少】【许】【后】，【欧】【阳】【天】【他】【从】【叶】【辰】【的】【身】【上】【收】【回】【了】【目】【光】，【直】【接】【向】【着】