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Inevitable Daughter Act 1-1
An African Blood Siblings Play
Characters: Nigeria, Somal, Leah and Mrs. Thompson
Setting: Home (The four characters are seated around the table with a floral sheet atop.)
Nigeria: First thing I’mma get with my money is a new weave.
Leah: (Laughing) Girl you crazy!
Nigeria: I ain’t crazy. I’m walking around with a wig like a woman hiding her grays. Holding my hair down when it’s windy. I need to be able to lay down with Isiah without–
Mrs. Thompson: Oh Lord!
Leah: (Laughing) Girl you real crazy!
Nigeria: Maybe I am.
Leah: So you are taking the job?
Nigeria: I’m thinking about it.
Mrs. Thompson: What’s there to think about? You don’t take the job, we don’t have a house. That’s the term of our welfare. If none of us work, none of us live.
Somal: That doesn’t seem right.
Mrs. Thompson: What’s not right about it? “In the sweat of your face shall you eat bread” — Genesis 3:19. When no one sweats, no one eats.
Somal: Yeah but only Nigeria can work. Leah and I are too young and you were disabled on the job.
Mrs. Thompson: That’s the Law and God has a plan.
Somal: Men have plans too. Wicked men. I don’t feel we should go according wicked plans.
Nigeria: You’re not the one going. I am.
Somal: Today. But what about next year when I’m old enough? You’re going to work with Mr. Puxt. The man who owns the company who owns our building. How is it that we are in a predicament where White men force us, one by one, to work or die?
Leah: Because White men are Superior.
Mrs. Thompson: I never taught you that!
Leah: You didn’t have to. School taught me that.
Somal: Well that’s nonsense!
Nigeria: Why do you say White men are Superior, Leah?
Leah: Think about it. You noticed in school that there are gifted and non-gifted classes and Whites occupy the former and Blacks the latter. You noticed that there’s a Professional and Entertainment world out there, and Whites occupy the Former–Doctors, Lawyers, Businessman–and Blacks occupy the latter–Dancers, Singers, Ballplayers. In Mathematics, you’ve noticed that Euclid discovered Mathematical Laws in Ancient Greece and you’ve seen the impressive Architecture of Ancient Greece. In the Sciences, you’ve noticed that Isaac Newton discovered Gravity and Christopher Columbus discovered that the Earth was Round. And let’s never forget that Europeans produced Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, the three Wisest men in the history of humankind, whereas we only produce Criminals. Come. With all this evidence, it’s evident that Whites are Superior and Blacks are Inferior.
Somal: That’s what they tell you!
Leah: Prove it otherwise.
Nigeria: She has you there, Somal.
Somal: No, they have us. Nigeria, though you have to work, be careful. There’s something very wrong with this.
Nigeria: No worries, I’m always safe. I have me a gun and a knife and that’s all the protection anyone needs. A gun is a great equalizer.
Leah: Would you kill a White person?
Nigeria: I’d do anything to get my weave.
Leah: (Laughing) Girl you crazy!
Somal: I think you’re both nuts.
Mrs. Thompson: Don’t say that of your Sisters.
Somal: It’s just . . . it just doesn’t make sense. We cut or straighten our hair then dress up for the same people who underpay us and put us in these small little rat-infested boxes. Why do we have to change our image?
Nigeria: You heard Leah. It looks better. And don’t ask why. It just does. I’m not attracted to wild hair or kente cloth and none of that looks professional. This is America. My grocers are Korean, my sandwiches are Arab, my nails were made in China and I’m Black. Maybe in Africa all of that is done by Black people, but I like it here and how it is. All I gotta do is work and my needs are met. So if you all will excuse me, I’m off to the White theatre, then I’mma eat a White burger then shake a White man’s hand for some work.
Somal: I don’t feel like she’ll be safe.
(Mrs. Thompson and Leah lift up the floral sheet as a curtain, Judge Tom in a Mask sits at the rightmost of the Table [as Mr. Puxt] and the three other chairs are removed.)