To talk as if they had a manifesto in their mouth

Pêdra Costa



The Southern Butthole Manifesto

The butthole’s investigations are theoretical and practical, always. Theory is on the skin and the practice comes from life. The theory only exists if there is the experience. It only transforms itself if it goes through the body. The Southern Butthole is movement. The constraints and rigid systems of the body do not flow in these studies. We do not fight against anything. Our fights were always defeated. We already learned about this in the history of the world. We are Sorceresses and Healers. Our dance and our Ginga[i] is our fight, our way of loving, playing, being in connection with our community. We are always collective, never individuals. The artfulness is the basis of our whole life against the colonizer’s project. Artfulness is not learned and taught.

Our knowledge would never be recognized if they were not appropriated by white and/or Europeanized knowledge and bodies. Our voices are not audible. Thus, we have all the autonomy and authority to found such studies. Try as we might, we will never be authorized as a field of knowledge by whiteness. We do not need its approval!

We move forward criticizing the „colonial fantasies“ about our bodies and, specifically, butts. Our fierce criticism comes from our buttholes. Our butthole is our power. So many interdictions, religious and colonial fantasies about our butts. Anthropophagy does not unite us anymore. We already ate them as a condition violently imposed by the colonial civilizing education. Now we vomit them and we shit them. To the South of the world, to the butthole of the body.

Courtesy of the author; first published in: Anti*Colonial Fantasies – Decolonial Strategies. Editors Imayna Caceres, Sunanda Mesquita & Sophie Utikal. Vienna: Zaglossus, 2017.

[i]        Ginga is the basic movement of Capoeira.



To talk as if they had a manifesto in their mouth

Video work, Pêdra Costa, 2023, 03:51.



Pêdra Costa (they/she) is a ground breaking, formative Brazilian, Visual & Urban Anthropologist, Performer and Tarot Reader based in Berlin that utilizes intimacy to connect with collectivity. They work with their body to create fragmented epistemologies of queer communities within ongoing colonial legacies. Their work aims to decode violence and transform failure whilst tapping into the powers of resilient knowledge from a plethora of subversive ancestralities and spiritualities that have been integral anti-colonial and necropolitical survival.

Pêdra Costa is the Erste Bank Art Awardee 2023. Pêdra Costa is part of the academic research group Pedagogy of Performance: scene visualities and critical body technologies in Brazil, coordinated by Prof. Dr. Dodi Leal at the Federal University of Southern Bahia.