Eve will forever and always be my black feminist favorite, even though she isn’t real. Even though Krogan can live up to a thousand years, what she has experienced in her lifetime is still a reality for black women today.
You see, the krogan are a dying race. Due to the infighting and the genophage, a biological weapon that was designed to reduce krogan numbers, the newer generation looks like being the last. Even though they are a tough race, this weakness has made the males more violent, killing each other over territory, capturing fertile females and selling them between clans, or just leaving their home world in general to become a mercenary.
In Mass Effect 2, you visit the krogan home world, Tuchanka, where you overhear a conversation about the female camp sending over a messenger so the males can meet the newer generation of krogan that survived this clutch (Krogan are giant 8′ tall lizards, so they lay eggs). On Tuchanka, you also discover the horror the female krogan go through to find a cure for the genophage. The results usually end in death, not just from the experiments done to them, but also from the heartbreak of witnessing the loss of their children to the genophage. Eve mentions that she knew of a sister who walked out into the wasteland to end her life because her child did not draw breath.
In Mass Effect 3, you meet Eve, the last female krogan to survive an experiment to cure the genophage. She is weak and possibly dying, but before she makes her way onto Commander Shepard’s ship, she tears a shotgun from the male krogan accompanying you on the mission to save her and shoots an enemy in the chest. She is not one to be fucked with, no matter how she feels.
One on the ship, you can ask her about herself. If you ask for her name, you find out she surrendered it when she became a shaman. If you ask her how she became a shaman, she’ll tell you she started the rites after she lost her child.
“I started to live.”
Sterilization is still a thing that happens. In the states, black women and other women of color have gone through such heinous acts under the guise of better reproductive health for these women. From 2006 to 2010, women in prison had sterilization forced onto them.
I find that sterilization is a way to continue eugenics. There are more than enough willing people with wombs to raise their hands and say “Yo, I am more than willing to give this up to help people who wish to conceive or for science” instead of forcing people to go though with it, no matter how honeyed their words are.
I also find it very creepy and backwards that people go through the trouble of coercing people in prisons to get sterilized while popping off at the mouth about how birth control and abortions are terrible for the world and will shame black women and femmes for seeking those options because of lack of sexual education. But that’s another topic for another day.
“In the darkest hour, there is always a way out.”
Eve tells you about the last rite she went through during her trials to become a shaman. She was locked away in a cave, given enough food to last seven days. In those seven days, she should be able to find her way out or else she’ll starve. She started to starve because she went the wrong way. On her journey to find a way out, she found a crystal, which became her chisel. She never tells you how long she was digging for, but the peace you hear in her voice when she talks about she survived.
Eve is my hero because she went the wrong way and still managed to achieve her freedom. Black women and femmes struggle with trying to figure out the right way to navigate through life, while still shouldering the burdens forced onto us. Every rite black women and femmes go through is and will always be wrong if it’s not done the right way. Eve went the wrong way, came out on top and will shoot a man in the face, invasive testing be damned.