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The metaphorical place an oppressed person goes when they have become silent or compliant to their own oppression. More often, the sunken place is used to describe a disadvantaged person who is ignorant or unwilling to see that they have been conditioned into acquiescence. However, the sunken place can apply to anyone who chooses to stay silent in the face of discrimination or injustice, usually of their own.

First popularized by Jordan Peele's "Get Out," the main character, Chris, a black man, falls into a cognitive void after his white girlfriend's mother, Missy sends him there with covert hypnosis. When Missy instructs him to "sink into the floor" Chris becomes paralyzed, and plunges into a dark void, watching the world get smaller in the distance. The audience is made aware that Chris is not literally falling, but in a tranced state of mind. Throughout the film, Chris is sent to the sunken place as a way for his girlfriend's white family to take advantage of him without his protest, as they had done with many black people before him.

In the words of Peele it is: “the system that silences the voice of women, minorities, and of other people … the sunken place is the President who calls athletes sons of bitches for expressing their beliefs on the field... Every day there is proof that we are in the sunken place." In a statement made on twitter, Peele explained, "the Sunken Place means we're marginalized. No matter how hard we scream, the system silences us."
Janice: Why did Trump get votes from women if he had such a long history of being sexist?
Darryl: They're all in the sunken place. Thats why.
by serenajoy May 12, 2018
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