Nappy Care

Who determines if Black Women are Beautiful? | Mommafucious

While catching up on Season 2 of the “Being Mary Jane” television series, I came upon a scene in Episode 9 where Gabrielle Union as Mary Jane Paul hosts a discussion on the Black woman’s image. Is she ugly?

The guest are real life activist and scholars, singer-songwriter, actress, musician, and record producer India Arie; Mark Anthony Neal a Professor of African & African American Studies and the founding director of the Center for Arts, Digital Culture and Entrepreneurship (CADCE) at Duke University; and Michaela Angela Davis, image activist, feminist, and CNN contributor. Professor Neal hosts many Black scholars on his weekly webcast, “Left of Black,” so this was right up his alley.

The question is: Black women. Do you feel Beautiful?WE have to say we are magic,” says Davis. Watch and Learn!!!

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The Passion of Nicki Minaj – The New York Times

This is the Nikki Minaj I understand. This the flavor that coated glass covered hills African Diasporan immigrants climbed in the past, present, and future if needed.

“She pointed my way, her extended arm all I could see other than the diamonds glinting in her ears. This wasn’t over yet. ‘‘That’s the typical thing that women do. What did you putting me down right there do for you?’’ she asked. ‘‘Women blame women for things that have nothing to do with them. I really want to know why — as a matter of fact, I don’t. Can we move on, do you have anything else to ask?’’ she continued. ‘‘To put down a woman for something that men do, as if they’re children and I’m responsible, has nothing to do with you asking stupid questions, because you know that’s not just a stupid question. That’s a premeditated thing you just did.’’ She called me ‘‘rude’’ and ‘‘a troublemaker,’’ said ‘‘Do not speak to me like I’m stupid or beneath you in any way’’ and, at last, declared, ‘‘I don’t care to speak to you anymore.’’”

Source: The Passion of Nicki Minaj – The New York Times

Self-Care for Black Women: A Photography Exhibit Focuses on What It Looks Like | The Root

More from The RootThe Beautiful Project

The Beautiful Project, a Durham, N.C.-based nonprofit, has launched an online exhibit—“The Self Care Exhibit: A Word and Image Act of Self-Preservation and Political Warfare”—to help us see, through a photographic collective, how that self-preservation Sister Audre was referencing takes shape. The organization has long empowered black girls by making them partners in reframing their images in the media, but this is the first time it is applying its unique artistic activism through photography to an issue specific to adult black women.

The concept emerged during a conversation in 2013 when Jamaica Gilmer, a professional photographer gifted in the art of storytelling with her lens, and fellow co-founders of the Beautiful Project, writer and educator Pamela Thompson and educator and activist Erin Stephens, led a discussion with their group of contributors.

via Self-Care for Black Women: A Photography Exhibit Focuses on What It Looks Like – The Root.

‘Dear White Academics …’ | Vitae

“Wow, you’re so articulate.”
“Are you the cleaning lady?”
“Do you have a Ph.D.?”
“James? What’s your real Asian name?”

Dear White People

You’ve heard or heard of statements like these. Students and scholars call them “microaggressions”—casual, everyday comments and questions that might not rise to the level of a verbal altercation or a physical beatdown, but are rooted in stereotyping and racially-biased assumptions nevertheless.

Some microaggressions are obvious. But it can take a well-tuned ear to perceive the subtleties and nuances in others. The people delivering coded comments might actually intend them as compliments, not realizing that they are holding on to stereotypes that are invisible to them.

As a returning African American and retired Systems Engineer student, after 20 years absence from academia, these microaggressions, not only by whites but surprisingly from other African American professors, raised my blood pressure. The first two weeks with an unfamiliar professor was a tight rope walk between maintaining respect for their proficiency and battling their cultural and class ignorance.

I must add to the author’s short list of microaggressions with these.

The patronizing African American father,
“I know your struggle. We were so poor…”

First day of class,
“You might want to take an easier class.”

The Master’s research meeting,
“We may want to refer to … for more information on the local drug scene, street life, …”

Your eyes bulge, but hopefully not enough to be that one person every African American does not want to stereotype at these venues. The Angry Black Woman or Man. So you recline, count the hours until you can make a hasty retreat, count up how much you are spending for this abuse, open your books at night and push the demons away to let in empirical evidence that this is all not a waste of time. This article places the response to these microaggressions better than I ever could.

“The greatest microaggression, some say, is that they feel unable to express their displeasure. That’s because they don’t want to be perceived as “angry” people of color who constantly play “the race card.” A few others say they’ve learned not to get angry or paranoid: Microaggressions, they say, reflect the flaws of the people dishing them out. Better to invest their time and energy on working on things they can change.”

In business, there is the option of consulting attorneys in the worse cases. Academia does not afford students this option. Students are locked in by a financial and personal investment. These perpetrators know this and find no need to leash their ill-behaviors.

The article points to a book, a supplement to the film “Dear White People,” “Dear White People: A Guide to Inter-Racial Harmony in ‘Post-Racial’ America,” which hopefully all academic professionals and students will absorb. If they cannot find the time, there is also a chart or shortlist to guide them through their internal war with their past and present demons toward a more cultured future.

via ‘Dear White Academics …’ | Vitae.

Link to Dear White People: A Guide to Inter-Racial Harmony in ‘Post-Racial’ America  by Justin Simien, Ian O’Phelan on Amazon.com

Book_DearWhite People

‘SNL’ Nails Important Point About Aid Programs In Africa With Spot-On, Hilarious Sketch | #OYRchallenge


In last Saturday’s show, during a sketch called “39 cents,” the late-night comedy group took aim at Western charities that collect donations for Africa, lampooning them via a character named Charles Daniels, who serves as a generic stand-in for celebrity figureheads the world over.

“Hello, I’m Charles Daniels,” opens Bill Hader, the actor who plays the character in the skit, as soft piano music plays in the background. “For years we’ve been taking you to villages like this, and showing you the heartbreak of families whose only mistake was being born poor.”

via ‘SNL’ Nails Important Point About Aid Programs In Africa With Spot-On, Hilarious Sketch.

Brazil’s new primetime show “Sexo e as Negas” serves the white gaze | Media Diversified

Black Brazilian Women

When we first heard the news about the series, it was said that a white woman would be the principal actor. She, who behind a balcony, would observe us like animals in a zoo. She who would speak on our behalf. Our history, suffering and capacity to speak for ourselves were minor details. The narrators of our trauma and suffering, in this case a man, is someone absent from this suffering. It is not silliness, not even conservatism, not even the forces of politically correctness, as some will suggest. It is about critical care for our history and existence.

via Brazil’s new primetime show “Sexo e as Negas” serves the white gaze | Media Diversified.

The Temptations “Ball of Confusion” – YouTube

via The Temptations “Ball of Confusion” – YouTube.

Dear White People and the Myth of the Post-Race College Campus | NewBlackMan in Exile | #OYRchallenge

Dear White People and the Myth of the Post-Race College Campus | NewBlackMan in Exile

In this comprehensive review of Justin Simien’s first film “Dear White People,” published in “NewBlackMan (in Exile)”, Stephane Dunn teases out the academic and cultural notations guiding this redress on post-racialism. The film’s production and acceptance by the viewing public stands as a step forward in the overt race conversation. The title alone, in earlier years and still today, would have whites and fearful Blacks running the other way. Yet, “Dear White People” is making its rounds in theaters across the United States. Progress at least among some populations.

Excerpt:

Dear White People doesn’t merely copy or recycle still relevant cultural critiques about the racist imagery that infuses film and American culture though Simien certainly traverses some familiar ground – racialized representations in pop culture and warring notions of black authenticity, brought up to date with Aaron McGruder-like Boondock boldness. Dear White People adds its own chapter taking on ‘post-racial’ – ‘post-black’ contemporary discourses. However, that and title aside, its concern is with a range of competing social identities, particularly class and sexuality and the intersection of these with race. Race is as much a device as key theme.- Stephane Dunn

Similar to Ferguson, Missouri’s recent protest in the murder of Michael Brown, among other young Black men and women, some in the African American community sit astraddle the discussion of race. Our scholars and young are eager for the discussion to expand beyond academic discourse. The older and fearful or ‘conservative’ wait to mingle among the crowds that gather or recline – if a spark is not ignited. The mixed bag is historic and similar to any community. Still this historic step forward does not require the total capitulation of the African American community. The mere progress of this film speaks for itself.

Read this review. See the film. Then, bring this conversation of race and identity to your dinner table, clubs, and communities.


via Dear White People and the Myth of the Post-Race College Campus | NewBlackMan in Exile.

Cartoonists Who Paint a New Picture of Racial Justice – COLORLINES

“We need diverse books. We need to make them, buy them, read them, review them, talk about them,” award-winning cartoonist Gene Luen Yang told GalleyCat in describing his support for a social media campaign to diversify the publishing world. “Our world is colorful, so our books should be too.” This summer, Yang teamed up with Sonny Liew to release a new graphic novel called “The Shadow Hero,” based on a character named the Green Turtle who was first introduced by in the 1940s by pioneering Chinese-American cartoonist Chu Hing. The Green Turtle has since been dubbed the first Asian-American superhero by fans and prompted colorful dedications from artists across the genre. “Shadow Hero” is Yang’s third book; his last one, 2011”s “Boxers and Saints” was nominated for a National Book Award. His “American Born Chinese” came out in 2006. Yang is one of a handful of working cartoonists whose work about identity has blown up in recent years. He suspects that at least part of the reason can be found in America’s changing racial demographics. “I think [identity] is something we all deal with now,” he told Colorlines over the phone. “I think that most of us have had some sort of experience when we’ve been some sort of minority for whatever reasons. It’s difficult to grow up now in a mono-ethnic culture. People are now realizing that identity is something you have to actively construct when you get older.”

Outside of the heavily marketed superhero comics from Marvel and DC, graphic novels are, sadly, as bad in the diversity department as other sectors of the publishing industry. While people of color make up 30 percent of America’s population, only 10percent of children’s books — which categorizes graphic novels — contain multicultural content, according to an infographic from Lee and Lows. But, according to Yang, that’s quickly changing. “The kinds of stories that are being in told have grown by leaps and bounds since I was a kid growing up in the ’80s,” he says.Here are a handful of graphic novels that deal with some aspect of racial justice, whether it’s an individual identity or a community coming to terms with itself.

via Cartoonists Who Paint a New Picture of Racial Justice – COLORLINES.