Blog Archives

On Black Men Showing Up for Black Women at the Scene of the Crime

Two nights ago I showed up to the Brecht Forum in Brooklyn ready to have a conversation about what we mean when we say “ally, privilege, and comrade.” I showed up to have that discussion after months of battle testing around these issues in my own crew. Over these months I’ve learned that it is far easier to be just to the people we don’t know than the people we do know. So there I sat on a panel with a white woman and a Black man. As a Black feminist, I never quite know how political discussions will go …Read more »

De-Tangling Racism: On White Women and Black Hair

Pictures from a new exhibit by photographer Endia Beal called “Can I Touch It?” showcase several white women, all corporate execs, who agreed to get a “Black hairstyle” and then have their portrait taken. Apparently, this very quotidian fixation with Black women’s bodies and Black women’s hair is now the stuff of art exhibits. This project started when Beal began permitting many of her white corporate colleagues to touch her big red ‘fro, to pull it even, while she photographed them doing it. Over the summer, a friend and I happened upon the “You Can Touch My Hair” exhibit that …Read more »

Twerking Makes the Oxford Dictionary on the Anniversary of Hurricane Katrina

What do twerking and Hurricane Katrina have to do with each other? Absolutely everything. I know that y’all have been inundated with discussions of twerking since Miley’s unfortunate, insidious, and downright bad performance at the VMA’s earlier this week. There have been some really great pieces about all that is wrong with her performance here and here. So I will not retread this ground. But when I woke up this morning to discover that the word “twerk” is now being added to the Oxford English Dictionary, I felt some type of way. I felt the same type of way years …Read more »

Moving Forward

Dear Readers, We have been moving through a season of transition here at the CFC. We are choosing to be transparent with you, our community of readers, about these transitions because we are accountable to you, not only for what we say publicly but for the integrity that undergirds our message. Some members have formally decided to leave the collective. Many of you read Moya’s farewell post last week. The CFC simply would not be the group or entity it is without the labor of love that Moya provided for the past three years, and we are deeply grateful for …Read more »

The Time Isn’t Right, But It Is Now: Processing Our Anger for Trayvon the Black Feminist Way

I am still angry that Trayvon Martin’s murderer is a free man. I know many of you are still reeling, too, and that you share my sense of despair and helplessness. Every time I see George Zimmerman’s defense team, Mark O’Mara and Don West, give another interview and brazenly suggest that it is Zimmerman who is the victim, Zimmerman who is in danger, Zimmerman who was unfairly racially targeted, I alternate between wanting to throw something at the tv and wanting to summon all my evangelical roots to call down the fire and brimstone of an Old Testament God who …Read more »

Tyler Perry Hates Black Women: 5 Thoughts on The Haves and Have Nots

  ****Spoilers**** Welp. I watched the premiere of  Tyler Perry’s latest train wreck on OWN last night for two reasons. A.) Morbid curiosity and B.) I didn’t wanna hear negroes’ mouths about how I didn’t give it a chance and was therefore uninformed and unqualified to speak on his show (despite the 12 or so movies and 2 stage plays of his I’ve paid to go see and time I spent watching episodes of his existing tv shows that I can’t get back.) Anyway. Here are my thoughts. 1.) Tyler Perry is a cultural batterer:  the cultural equivalent of an …Read more »

“The Booty Don’t Lie”: Kelly, K. Michelle, & Janelle Monae’ Sing Black Girl Freedom

One of the biggest conundrums  faced by this generation of Black feminists is the challenge of articulating a pro-sex, pro-pleasure politic in the face of recalcitrant and demeaning stereotypes that objectify, dehumanize, and devalue Black women’s bodies and lives. To be “good” feminists, we always feel that we have to make sure and say it, so folks know that we get it, that we understand the magnitude of these histories of negative representation. To be fair, I understand that part of the reason for insisting on naming the rampant misogynoir (h/t to Moya Bailey) in our culture is that keeping …Read more »

Five Ways Talib Kweli Can Become a Better Ally to Women in Hip Hop

  After this latest week of utter shamtastery in Hip Hop, the words of the late great Aaliyah resonate now more than ever: We need a resolution; there is so much confusion. Rick Ross thinks that drugging a woman and raping her isn’t rape, but rather a case of misunderstanding. FOH Talib Kweli thinks that the first responsibility that women in Hip Hop have to men in Hip Hop is to love to them. Despite his alleged support for Frank Ocean, Busta Rhymes remains an unrepentant and violent homophobe. From my armchair therapist’s seat, I want to ask what Busta …Read more »

I Been On (Ratchet): Conceptualizing a Sonic Ratchet Aesthetic in Beyonce’s “Bow Down”

Guest Post by Regina N. Bradley at Red Clay Scholar     While listening to Beyonce’s latest single “Bow Down/I Been On” an eyebrow raised in amusement along with a low “woooooord?” I couldn’t believe that Beyonce, Mrs. “Girls-Run-the-World” was talking to bitches and – gasp! – demanding they bow down. But it wasn’t Bey’s emphatic singing and ad libs that caught my attention. It was the track itself. The track, in all its “H-town vicious” glory, that briefly pulled Beyonce back south off her global stage. I contextualize Beyonce as a dichotomy of grit and grace, two polarized representations of …Read more »

Single, Saved, and Sexin: The Redux

One of the most controversial posts we’ve ever had here at the blog was called Single, Saved, and Sexin’: The Gospel of Getting Your Freak On. In that piece, over two years ago, I argued: Sex is a form of creative power. And it is in the literal fact of its creative aspects that we feel alive, fully human, and connected. I think God wants nothing less than this for us, and that requires regular, intimate connections of bodies, or at the very least a very regular, intentional and unapologetic intimate connection with our own body.   So sex is …Read more »

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