Monthly Archives: January 2011

The Revolution Televised: A Brief Primer on Egypt

Egypt has been all over the news lately, as Egyptians have lifted their voices in condemnation of despotic president, Hosni Mubarak. There are some key things to keep in mind as the events unfold: 1.     Don’t get it twisted:  this is a revolution. It has been called chaos, upheaval, civil unrest, an uprising, a challenge, a twitter revolution, a youth movement, and class warfare. Each category reduces the power of the people to come together to build a popular revolution, which requires coalition building to fight for connected interests and a common goal. Call it what it is: a revolution. 2.   …Read more »

RE: Kanye West is Not a Feminist, but…

Crunktastic’s article is crossposted from our friends over at The Feminist Wire. I find myself both intrigued and troubled by Ron Neal’s recent TFW post, “Kanye West Is Not a Feminist, But…” Neal is absolutely spot on that Kanye displays a level of emotional vulnerability and complexity that is rare for Black male hip hop artists. But I would argue that this level of Black male vulnerability, while rare in Hip Hop, is actually a hallmark of serious Black male artists. And I do consider Kanye a serious artist, although I think this gives him a pass sometime to do …Read more »

Don’t Push Me Cuz I’m Close to the Edge: For Kelly Williams-Bolar

Kelly Williams-Bolar, a single mother of two daughters, ages 16 and 12, is serving day 9 of a 10-day suspended sentence in an Akron, OH jail for –wait for it – “records falsification” after modifying documents so that her  daughters could attend school in a better school district than the ones near the subsidized housing where they currently live. To add insult to great, great injury, Ms. Williams-Bolar has been denied, by virtue of her felony conviction, the right to complete her teaching degree in special education that she is merely a few credits shy of reaching as a college …Read more »

The Zen of Young Money: Being Present to the Genius of Black Youth

Guest post by Dr. Alexis Pauline Gumbs, friend of CFC, Wonder Twin of me I fly with the stars in the skies, I am no longer trying to survive, I believe that life is a prize, But to live doesn’t mean you’re alive. Being Black: Zen and the Art of Living with Fearlessness and Grace, Angel Kyodo Williams “Over” Drake “Moment for Life” Nicki Minaj what am I doing? what am I doing? oh yeah, that’s right, I’m doing me, I’m doing me I’m living life right now and this what I’m a do til its over til it’s over, …Read more »

Does this make me look Latina?

I was recently asked to give a presentation about women in the workforce to a group of Latina undergraduate students. After the panic about speaking in public wore off, I started asking myself, what could I possibly teach them? I started thinking about my experiences (as a student and professional) and how they have been shaped by the cultural imaginary of Latinos in this country. Too many stereotypes persist and continue to negatively affect Latinos. You know them. I will not waste my time listing them here. I will, however, say that after going through the long list of stereotypes …Read more »

Why I Am Watching “The Game”

“It’s so crazy how these fans are so embedded and … attached to these story lines,” Tia Mowry said. “They actually think Melanie and Derwin are real.” I was one of the 7.7 million viewers who tuned in to watch The Game’s resurrection on BET last Tuesday.  And I will also be in the number, along with most of Black America, who tunes in tomorrow to see what happens (Will Melanie tell Derwin that DJ is his child? Will Kelly and Jason have make up sex already and get back together? Will Titi blow up Malik’s spot and tell the …Read more »

Meeting My Sister

Yesterday, I met my sister on Facebook. My mother’s only child, I have always wanted an older sister, someone wiser and cooler who could hip me to the ways of the world. I had replied to a cousin’s status update,  an action that has become as commonplace as eating my morning bowl of cereal. When I perused the other status replies a few moments later, there was a name that I immediately recognized, but never expected to see. Clearly this was no ordinary morning. Just a few weeks ago, I searched for her on Facebook with the little bit of …Read more »

Feeling Good Means Healing Good

So it’s January and the weight loss advertisements are literally flooding in.  Like two days into the new year Bobby Flay was in a warm up suit talking healthy eating when October-December he and all his foodie buddies on the Food Network and the new Cooking channel were all about indulgence. But the ad that really caught my eye was the Jennifer Hudson Weight Watchers ad. As usual I was behind the times because I TiVoed Black Girls Rock, which was taped in October and aired in November, but I did not watch it until December.  So I literally watched …Read more »

Watch What You Say: On The Accountability of Words

In a communication course last year my students and I reached an impasse when they insisted that words have no power.  When I challenged their overuse of popular, yet problematic, slang that is potentially offensive and harmful (i.e., saying something is “gay” or “retarded”) they claimed that words don’t mean anything, they are “just words.”  As a communication scholar and professor I offered theoretical and practical evidence to dismantle their argument but I felt I could better show them than tell them.  I continually challenged their thinking and came to our next class meeting with a list of offensive terms …Read more »

Does This Make Me Look Fat?

I own the movie Phat Girlz and I’m not ashamed. Starring a pre-Oscar Mo’Nique, Phat Girlz is part Cinderella-story, part conventional rom-com about a big girl searching for some love. It’s not remarkable in terms of budget, plot, or acting. In fact, a fair bit of it is cringe-worthy. (What immediately springs to mind is the fetishization of Nigerian men. Good Lord). Still, despite its shortcomings, the  film works for me for some fundamental reasons.  I appreciate the fact the big girls are not sassy sidekicks, but they are stars of the show. And while it was billed as a …Read more »

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