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  • Manju Sadarangani

Menopause II

Menopause II

20" x 20"

Acrylic on Canvas

July 2023


For most animals, female and male lifespans have parity. Large mammals are an exception to that. For a whole slew of large mammals, the female outlives the male, sometimes long past her reproductive years. For most of these species, this menopausal woman serves as the matriarch, the font of institutional knowledge, the one who knows the way.

African elephants don't experience menopause, but female elephants spend most of their lives in leadership roles which have very little to do with their reproductive status. The matriarchs lead the herd, educating them about life, teaching them how to dodge the perils of the wild. They work as a collective, in a symphony of flexibility, institutional memory, and adaptability. I hope women look at this piece and understands it as a sign of their power to contribute to the survival of the species.

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