Looking in the Mirror

Spiritual Revelations for those seeking Humanity in Humans ~~CordieB.

Who are the Sarah (Saartjie) Baartman’s of Today?

A, from Cuvier; B, from Friedenthal; click here to see the whole picture and other information on external genitalia scientific research for which Sarah was used, after her life as a “dancer” fizzzled out.

Who are the Saartjie Baartman’s of Today?
Poem written by Cordieb on November 8th, 2007

Who are the Saaartjie Baartman’s of Today?
Young woman and girls thinking it’s all o.k.;
To shake, break, and use there bodies to “make a way.”

Before they know it, they’re all used up;
There mind and spirit are all abused up;
They are tossed aside like last night’s trash;
Completely burned up like a cigarette ash;

We must reach out to the Sarah wannabee’s;
Before it’s too late and destiny seizes;
Their brilliant smiles and will to live;
We must teach to them, preach to them, reach out to them;
….and be willing to give.

We must give them our time, our love and support;
We must give them our trust, and yield not to fall short;
We must tell them true beauty lies not in there asses;
Because they are genuine gems like true diamond facets.

Remind them to think like royalty and reach for a star;
To carry themselves like the queens that they are.
We must protect our young women and girls from the evil and wrath;
That can steal their hearts, body, and soul, and leave hollow carcasses in death.

Don’t Let Ms. Baartman’s life and death be all in vain
Remember the story and tell it again and again…….

For more information on the life and death of Sarah Baartman, please visit my other blog page at https://cordieb.wordpress.com/2007/10/30/who-is-saartjie-sarah-baartman/


  Who is Saartjie (Sarah) Baartman? « Looking in the Mirror wrote @

[…] Who are the Sarah Baartman’s of Today, a poem written by Cordieb […]

  April Simmons wrote @

I never knew about this part of our history, this is my first time reading this. I would like to know more about things that aren’t talked about. I am 35 years old and I feel ashamed that I haven’t educated myself. So I want that part of my life to be history. Please forward me any information that I can share with my children. I know I will share this story with our youth group just maybe it will inspire our young ladies to stop parading around half naked and to save their gifts for their husbands.

  Calm Hill wrote @

This is interesting. I ran across this on a website and yours came up on google. What you say about it being similar to today is quite profound.

Calm Hill

  Mosala wrote @

I can’t believe that someone would dare write such a reckless peom criticising Sarah Bartman. Look, Sarah like all African people at the time was used and I do not think she ever wanted to be famous because of her looks or become rich because of her looks. She was brainwashed and made to belive that she could make money in London. She did not orchestrate her departure from South Africa to be used by Europeans. I do not think there are any people who want to be used like Sarah Bartman. I think your peom or whatever it is, is very insulting.

  CordieB wrote @

@Mosala. I do appologise if this poem insulted you. It was not the intent to insult you, Sarah or anyone else. It was written to enlighten young women of today to not fall for the false promises of men for a better life, as Sarah did, only to end up broken hearted, used and abused. As you wrote ” She was brainwashed and made to belive that she could make money in London” This is what so often happens to our young women today – and this poem is directed at them to not end up like Sarah. This was also a companion piece to :


This article tells Sara’s story more completely, based on my sources. If you believe the sources to be inaccurate, please let me know, and I will certainly take it into consideration and re-write the article.

Again, I did not mean this to be an insult or anything against Sarah Baartman. If you or others feel it is insulting, I will certainly remove it or solicit ideas on improving it so that it won’t come across as being insulting. I would never want to insult this woman, after all she went through in her life time. I do feel she was a victim of circumstances – and I only want to prevent todays woman from being victims too. So let me know how I can change it so that it won’t sound so insulting or disrespectful – because I was somewhat leary of how it would come across when I first wrote it. I am glad you have spoken up about it! There is always room for improvement.

Peace, Light and Love

  Nubian Goddess wrote @

Sarah Baartman was “let us not forget” a slave; therefore, she was forced to stand on display. She saw how her people were lynched and chose the life of exhibition, poking and probing so that it could, hopefully for her, prolong her life of empty promises that would possibly one day come true. But did it? Not then, not now, not ever and no one would want to be her except for the curves in all the right places whether natural or bought and that to me is also a crying shame just as the life of Sarah Baartman is too. This shows the sick mind of the white man and is perpetuated through the beliefs of falsehood in even today’s society.

  SanityFound wrote @

They seem pretty accurate Cordie, an amazing tribute to Saartjie her spirit will rest with the knowledge that she has been remembered so incredibly with your words. Her life led to changes, it leads to the lessons you wrote here, the warnings for the future. Her life held purpose and she knew that during her life time. It is the one thing that got her through the darkest of times, she knew.

I love this Cordie, I really do.

  cordieb wrote @

@Nubian Goddess; My intent of this posting was not as an insult to Saartjie Baartman but as a reminder that though physical slavery does not exist where I live; mental slavery and not making wise choices in life can in fact bring forth dire circumstances. After reading your comment; I will change the poem or remove it; as I can see that it is not taken as intended for those I most intended to reach. I appologize if it has offended you. Check back in a few days after a revision; let me know what you think. Peace, Light and Love, CordieB.

@SanityFound. Thanks SF. I’m glad you like the poem; but I need to do further research on this subject; as it has offeneded many people; especially the young people who I intended it to reach. I’m not sure if I should compare what we see today with that of a a person in actual bondage. Peace, Light and Love, lil sis – CordieB.

@All. The poem seems to be causing much distress and even anger among the races – something I would never want to do – as I believe racism (pre judging everyone for what some do or are doing) in any form is ignorant and not the answer to today’s issues. The intended message of the poem is not relayed properly; and I do understand the sensitivity of the issue at hand. Therefore, I will be removing the poem and perhaps rewriting two separate poems. The fact that she was a slave does make quite a difference as these were choices made in dire circumstances–nothing like the choices we as woman make today when we have other options. I humbly appoligize for all and any it may have offended. Peace, Light and Love, CordieB.

  SanityFound wrote @

Ok so I have to come in here with my perspective Cordie, you can delete. When I originally posted my comment I hadn’t read the others yet as I was rushed.

@Mosala you jump to conclusions beyond belief, you actually explained Cordies poem. She was brainwashed as are the youth of today. Perhaps you need to step back for a moment and see what it is Cordie was trying to say and just how close you are to it – if she insulted Saartjie so did you in your comment.

There is a centre in Cape Town now for the abused – domestic violence is a terrible thing, both mental, physical, sexual and abandonment. Saartjies legacy has saved so many by the lessons her life teaches.

@Nubian Goddess – Sadly it is not only the whites that discriminated against women or the disabled, it is the human race in general that has done this. There are many documented cases. I admit, when I first read your comment I took offense as you would from me if I were to reverse it.

Cordieb I beg you not to change this poem but rather I ask the people reading it to step back from their preconceived prejudices and thoughts and see it as a whole, with fresh eyes. See it as it was intended and from whence it comes, from someone who cares and tries to make this world a better place.

I think there is a true beauty within the story of Saartjie/Sarah which can be looked at from many different angles. Slave. Race. Disabled. Disformed. Sex. Promiscuity. Brainwashing. Life. Feminism. Chauvinism. Sexist. Choose one but don’t ignore the others.

You did an amazing thing with this poem Cordie. I actually want to send it through to the Saartjie Baartman Centre here in Cape Town. Do you mind if I do so? I think they would be honoured.

  cordieb wrote @

@SF. I’m glad you got my meaning. You were able to see what I was trying to convey; but sadly because she was a slave many feel that it should not be compared with what we see today. From all i have read, she was in fact brain washed into believing she would have a better life – such as so often happens with young people today. Although many modern day women have many choices, some truly do not believe they do; they are too easily convinced of a better life with the use of their bodies and oftentimes end up broken and broken hearted; I simply was trying to get young woman to realize this. Sarah’s choices were in fact very limited I am sure – therefore to compare the two may not be in good taste. The same would be true if she were white, asian, or jewish. I feel kind of saddened about this whole thing; as woman of all colors have been victims of this type of treatment and many people are making it into strictly a racial issue. The exploitation of all woman dates back very far and is a separate issue than that of race relations; although we as a people have a lot to learn about that too. Thank you for your comments and for being able to decipher my true meaning. Peace, Light and Love. . . CordieB.

  angryafrican wrote @

Don’t change it. Saartjie was misled and abused in so many ways. Times are different, but the misleading and the abuse haven’t changed. The treatment of women today has taken another form of abuse. Of limited opportunities. Of illusions of freedom and a better life. Saartjie of then would be the young women of today thinking they have no options and taking a route sold to them in the magazines and newspapers. Don’t change it. Only change it when the world changes. Saartjie suffered and had few choices. And none that would give her freedom from oppression. Too many young women today face the same. It’s not the same. And it is the same. just the style differs. The world just learned how to hide the oppression better behind pretty pictures and pretty people.

  cordieb wrote @

Thanks AA for your comment. I had begin to not trust my own judgement on this one; Although I knew my intent, I felt that perhaps comparing physical slavery to mental slavery and oppression might not be in good taste. But after reading your comment, I think it more beneficial than worrying about good or poor taste. I simply did not know how to convey it as you have. Brilliant! Everything you say is so true. Thanks for taking the time to read and comment. Peace, Light and Love, CordieB.

  JazzieF wrote @


Thank you so much for this poem. I have been touched very much by it. I am a 19 year old female who knew nothing about Sarah Bartman until about an hour ago (funny how ALL of my history classes had a filter).

Most young women like myself think it is ok to show off our bodies. We are STILL enslaved (even if it is mentally) and yet most of us do not know it. I apologize to all who have been offended by this poem, but I encourage you to read it again and stop trying to hide from what’s really going on in our society.

I know I will think twice about how I present myself from now on. No one should be taking pride in oppression. We should be taking pride in how we (minorities, women, disabled, etc.) are overcoming them.

I am in a course entitled, “African and African American Women” and I want to share your poem with my peers. Is that ok?

I will continue my research on Sarah Bartman because I want to inform others. It is imperative to contribute to the fight against letting history repeat itself. These music videos are doing the same thing to young women that William Dunlop did to Sarah.

*Let’s stop pointing fingers of blame. Let’s do something about changing it!*

Thank You

  cordieb wrote @

Oh dearest Jazzy F, your words brought tears to me today. I am overjoyed that this reached you in the intended manner. Please feel free to share it with your class and pass it on however you feel will be positive to the betterment of women. . . I can see that you are striving to be a mentally and physically free and clear young woman who only wants to spread a word of positive thoughts to the sisters and brothers out there. This is missing so much today, from what I see. I am guilty of it myself at times, even at 44. But I strive on! I applaud you! Keep me posted on the reactions and your research – it can be quite controversial, but better speak about it than remain mind shackled, I believe. Anyway, thanks for visiting . . . stay positive and continue learning everthing you can, it is the key to mastery of the mind. Peace, Light and Love, CordieB.

  Blackswan wrote @

The story of Sara Bartman is not new to me. I am 43 years old and my Father told me of her as a child. I am just happy that the european display of her remains was finally taken down and her remains returned to her home land. I read that, as a tribute to her, all of the South African women wore red gloves to her burial (there were hundreds, if not thousands that attended). It has been written that she always wore red gloves. I agree that the modern videos of African American women displaying their bodies is very similar to how Sara was forced to display herself. But, you have to educate young women and men about the history of the exploitaition of Black women. And as for white people these days, they haven’t changed. Their Game is just more passive. I am constantly approached or looked at in a lustful manner by white men, I remember all of the stories of my ancestors, about how they had no choices and could not even report a rape by a white man, or they would go to jail or worse. I feel that it would be terribly disrespectful to my ancestors to even date a white man. And, …O.K. what’s up with the term or racial catagory Bi-Racial. Black women gave birth to bi-racial children for hundreds of years during slavery and jim crow, by force and they were called black, it didn’t matter that the father was white. Now that white women are having them by choice …we have a new race. WOWWWW. White people never cease to amaze me. P.S. I am not a racist, I am a realist.

  cordieb wrote @

Thank you for visiting and commenting. . . As a black female who lives in America, I understand your pain. However, to judge a whole race of people, no matter the race, based on the individual acts of some, no matter how few or how many, is a form of racism. Do you really believe that ALL white people are out to get you? I sense there is some anger and animosity within you. . . This anger is a wasted energy which could be used positively to educate young women on how to avoid being exploited in today’s modern world. The past can not be changed, but if we still allow the past to shackle our thoughts and steal our energy. . . we are only taking steps backwards. As a rape victim, I can attest that had I allowed this event to tar my image of ALL men, my anger would certainly be my loss and my perpetrator’s continued gain.

Use that beautiful mind of yours to educate young women of today on honoring and loving themselves. Much of the exploitation I see today is because so many of us make bad choices – choices we need not make to feel good about ourselves.

In solidarity, Peace, Light and Love. . . my sister. CordieB.

  Lil’ Mama wrote @

I like your poem. I first heard about Sara Baartman in an interview I read about video vixen Buffy the Body. I couldn’t believe that I had never heard of Sarah. I agree that there is exploitation of black women. Hip-hop culture, music videos & urban magazines have brought this issue to the forefront. However, I think there is an element of choice here. These women are not forced to dance in videos and/or pose suggestively in magazines. They do it by choice. Many do it as a career stepping-stone, as a way to open the door for other endeavors, such as acting or radio. Have things gone too far? I think so; our bodies are just one part of who we are. All women want to be seen as attractive & desirable, but there is a problem when men & society think its ok to define women on physical & sexual attributes alone.

  owen greenland wrote @

The whole Saartjie Baartman story is one filled with tragedy – based on lies, deceit, deception, false-promises, exploitation and abuse … of a most vile nature.

This unfortunate woman had absolutely no say in her life – from the time she was enslaved into forced servitude – usurped from her homeland and paraded as “a thing” in foreign lands – where she had absolutely no support group to listen to her or ease her pain … until she came to a most unfortunate end – sick, destitute … used-up robbed of her dignity and pride – ending up even more poor than she was when she had “nothing” back home.

Thankfully, she now shares the heralded community with the Spirits of Africa – where her life will live on indefinitely …

To (try) and equate her life with the entertainment industry’s exploitation of black women in the USA is most disingenuous – to say the least …

So to answer your question: No, there is thankfully no equivalent of Saartjie Baartman in today’s world.

Within their respective countries – religions, traditions and cultures – many millions of women continue to suffer the ignominy of their misogynist men-folk who rule by misguided power and control …


formally KwaZulu-Natal

  owen greenland wrote @

So to answer your question: No, there is thankfully no equivalent of Saartjie Baartman in today’s world.

Fortunately, we have so many admirable and adept women who now stand up against the many injustices the women of the world are forced to endure.

Slowly but surely – the plight of womankind is beginning to improve – albeit ever so slightly.


  cordieb wrote @

Owen Greenland. . . thanks for your very educated comment. I find my self sensing that i really need to conduct more research on the subject; but the more I read, the more I’m apt to agree with your stance. Blessings. . .

  motlatsi qocha wrote @

It’s bad dunlope new what he was doing by taking our grandmother abroad, to make fun of her, you can see how devilish other people are, we africans are tought that ” private part are really private, dunlop the so called Dr. took her to show his unmannered folks how our mothers look like !!!

  chocolate teens wrote @

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