Why do we cry – and what can we learn from our tears?
Weeping is informed by everything from culture and identity to social standing – and studying it could help us better understand ourselves
This thickness intrigues me. The longer it takes for these tears to travel down a cheek, the greater the chance that they will be noticed by another person and their message perceived. Tears are a social signal.Tears often serve as a lubricant in the wheels of white supremacy. Many people (including Brittney Cooper and Ruby Hamad) have written about the harm of white women’s tears – how they have contributed to a long history of violence towards black people, indigenous people and people of colour.
That is why I try, as much as possible, to say what tears do. Tears can form an intimate bond between people. They can also create a disgusted separation. Their effect depends largely on the degree to which people share common stories about who they are and how the world works.
Perhaps you have noticed that it is almost impossible to sing and cry at the same time. The throat muscles cannot simultaneously obey the command to shape notes and the command to hold themselves open to maximise oxygen intake (a command that crying provokes unconsciously). This leads me to believe that the opposite of crying is not laughter (those two, I would argue, are sisters), but song. As a poet and as a human living on a planet careering ever more deeply and unevenly into capitalism-induced horrors, I want to attend to both: the moments of singing; the moments when a voice breaks.
The subject rewards that attention. Years into my research, I still found myself learning surprising new ways of understanding crying, physically and metaphorically. For instance, it turns out that the lump in your throat when tears are imminent is not a lump at all. Obeying the imperative to keep breathing through distress, the muscles of the throat work to stay open. When you try to swallow, the muscles resist, creating the sensation of an obstruction. Some people find relief in this fact – that their throat won’t close up, that their body is taking care of them and bringing them much-needed air. What if we could look at crying in the same way – not as a stopping point, but a passageway? What if we could look through crying to understand the abundance of patterns – of joy, oppression, grief, beauty, violence and transformative potential – that tears have the power to reveal?
Read more: The Guardian
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson transferred to intensive care
Over 51,000 people in the United Kingdom have tested positive for COVID-19, including Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Prince Charles, heir to the British throne.
I spilt milk... Like everywhere 😭 I'm guessing it's because you laugh maniacally upon reaching orgasm coupled with the fact your boyfriend has lost all interest ? Why do I cry? Where do I begin...
Why mixed weight dating shouldn't be a vehicle for body shamingLet’s be honest: relationships are hard enough as it is. But what happens when yours is singled out because you and your partners’ bodies do not ‘match’? StephanieYeboah explores...
Kate Middleton on why she chose hypnobirthing for all three pregnanciesThe Duchess of Cambridge used meditation and deep breathing to help her through her labours.
Cabin crew secrets: Insider reveals disgusting reason why you should avoid eating off trayAEROPLANES are known for not always being the cleanest of places, however, one airline insider has revealed the disgusting truth about the trays food is served on. Passengers may think twice about eating from them next time they fly. Doesn’t matter what it’s served in it’s still shite food unless you travel business class mmmmmmm
Why I'm running to be deputy leader of the Labour Party'I always try and remember in the words of Labi Siffre: ‘The further you take my rights away the faster I will run’' DawnButlerBrent on why she wants to be deputy leader DawnButlerBrent As long as your name is in no way Diane Abbott & U don’t talk the same flaky,inaccurate 🐂💩 as her then aim as high as you like. As long as that excuse for a person masquerading as a competent MP figures highly in your party you won’t get my vote &NO Diane im not racist-CLEARLY
Ozzy Osbourne health update: Why has Ozzy Osbourne cancelled his tour?Ozzy Osbourne has recently been seen using a cane and has been forced to cancel various gigs. But why has the Black Sabbath star been forced to cancel his upcoming North American tour? Why? Don't you think it's fucking obvious
'I was always told I was unusual': why so few women design video gamesGrowing numbers of women are studying video games at university, yet they remain underrepresented in industry Stop this victim mentality How about why there are so few male nurses in comparison to female ones? Aren't we supposed to live in a perfect and equal 50% 50% world? You are not the usual, most females do not want to design video games, therefore you are by definition unusual, it is not an insult.