occupation

”’How do you explain to your child, she was born to be hurt?' This line from Imitation of Life evokes the United States in its last desperate years of institutionalized racism. It seems more than coincidence that Douglas Sirk filmed his masterpiece in late summer of 1958, less than three years after Rosa Parks sat down in that bus in Montgomery and Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. led the boycott. Only a few years earlier, neither Hollywood nor the American public would have accepted this picture. (Even the 1934 Imitation of Life, conservative, safe, and devoid of subtext, encountered roadblocks…) In the spirit of those times, what might Juanita Moore’s lines to Lana Turner— ‘How do you explain to your child, she was born to be hurt?’ —have meant to audiences north and south when the film opened in 1959? What does it mean today? And how might we, in the ‘progressive’ twenty-first century, explain to those audiences at the the tail end of a similar era, that so much has changed, and so little?”
—Sam Staggs, Born to Be Hurt: The Untold Story of Imitation of Life

(Source: harrybelafontes, via vintagegal)