Heads of the Colored

Heads of the Colored


‘The Body’s Defense Against Itself’ is a fiction story written by Nafissa Thompson with main characters being Fatima and Christinia who go through high school and into their adulthood with so many fighting’s and disagreements. The two keep having issues overweight and appearance, but yoga seems to be the solution to their problems. Fatima has a sweating condition that puts him in an awkward position when it comes to interacting with other students. She tries visiting a doctor for help who prescribes his status as a history of trauma that causes her to sweat so much. Her condition was so severe that she was a given a name in her class over it making it a very embarrassing thing for her which she was trying hard to cope up with it. Christinia takes advantage of the condition and targets her every day over it. Fatima gets injured during one of the yoga sessions, and it happens that Christinia being the only a medical expert available that time attends to her (Thompson, 2015). Fatima recognizes her helping hand which leaves her wondering why they were competing back in school.

Themes Applied In the Story

In the beginning, Fatima thought that they would make good friends with Christinia in second grade as they had similar skin and collective intelligence. Their mothers were also both doctors who made them think they were a match. Friendship is a theme used in describing the relationship between Emily and Fatima. Fatima goes back to one of her relationships where she misread the intentions of the guy who ended up denying his request on being his boyfriend. It was an embarrassing moment for Fatima, but through her friend Emily who gave her support made her feel better. At one point she starts feeling less of herself thinking it is her condition of not being normal that put her through the pain. Emily stands by her side encouraging her to stand tall over the issue despite critics from Christinia and others.  Their friendship is well portrayed when Emily’s mother who kept wondering why she liked her with her sweating condition.

Transformation is an element in the context that is seen in the case where at the beginning of the story we see how Fatima and Christiana keep having issues with Christinia from time to time. Christinia expressed her disdain on her for five years acting in ways that interspersed with kindness.  Fatima expresses it by saying “one day she’d pull up my shirt that should have been bra, and the next day she’d give me a costly present”(Thompson, 2015) it all changes when Fatima gets injured while on yoga session, and she’s attended to by Christinia. On realizing who was treating her, she is filled with self-love and sisterhood and ends up worrying why they were competing on each other. Fatima begins to imagine of being diagnosed with endometriosis as a result of his bleeding condition and realizes she would have her remove the implants with cysts if they grew again in years.

What I Found Most Valuable about the Piece

What I liked most in this piece is the lesson on the importance of valuing one another and avoiding being judgemental on people around us. Fatima’s condition did not mean she was any different.  This piece of writing explains how togetherness is essential based on how Fatima’s mother wanted her to get a black friend to add to her experiences. Through interaction, one does not only socialize but also on benefit from sharing ideas regardless of the skin color, gender or race.


Was tone appropriately used in this story?




Thompson, N. (2015).The Body Defense Against Itself. Heads of the Colored People