What is it about?

This article critiques Tyler Perry’s For Colored Girls (2010) within the context of racial retrenchment and multicultural incorporation. The film adaptation of Ntozake Shange's Black feminist classic, for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf (1975), indicates a broader cultural investment in centering diverse bodies while emptying out the Black radical ways of knowing that such representations make possible.

Featured Image

Why is it important?

To explain the film's dynamics, the article theorizes what it terms “colorblind melodrama," or the aesthetics of an official antiracism that fetishizes collective trauma, masks structural inequities, and ultimately reaffirms the violent status quo. Building on the important work of Jodi Melamed, Felice Blake, and others, the article situates colorblind melodrama within the logics of what Melamed calls neoliberal multiculturalism, which operates according to the logic of disposability/exceptionality, i.e., inclusion/exclusion.


This article provides a complex critique of Tyler Perry's For Colored Girls in light of the Obama era's post-racial rhetoric. It also traces how the sanitized consumption of social and racial justice gains can stand in for radical collectives oriented toward struggle.

Alison Rose Reed
Old Dominion University

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Colorblind Melodrama: Tyler Perry's For Colored Girls and the Absorption of Black Feminism, Frontiers A Journal of Women Studies, January 2022, Project Muse,
DOI: 10.1353/fro.2022.0007.
You can read the full text:



The following have contributed to this page