Blog Archives

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 »

Beyonce’ In the Hands of Jesus Freaks

So apparently, Christendom is “uncomfortable” with Beyonce’s performance at this past Sunday’s Superbowl Show. Well I’m “uncomfortable” with their discomfort. This post from  David Henson over at Patheos.com, who called out his friends and acquaintances for their thinly veiled racism during the show inspired this FB rant from me:  ”Let me say as a Christian how disgusted I am with all this supposed “discomfort” over Bey’s Superbowl performance. It’s a bunch of B.S. What I saw was Girl Power to the max. And I find it interesting that this narrative about how the nation is going to hell in a hand …Read more »

(On Making Sure) Love Never Fails: Some Reflections on Feminism, Faith, and Holograms

I have made no secret with y’all that I’m a church girl and that the church remains profoundly important to me, even though I have walked out of it in anger, been disturbed and therefore refuse to be contained by much of its stifling theology, and generally am completely over the shenanigans of church folks, who have perfected the art of concern trolling in the name of Jesus. But church is still the place I go when I need to get my mind and my spirit right, when the work I want to do in the world has me vexed, …Read more »

We Have Dreams: Some Thoughts on Intentional Dreaming on this MLK-Inauguration Day

On this inauguration morning and MLK day, I woke up with Anna Arnold Hedgeman on my mind. You may not know her but you should.    Anna Arnold Hedgeman was the only woman to serve on the 1963 March on Washington planning committee. She was the first Black woman to serve in a New York Mayoral Cabinet, under the leadership Mayor Robert Wagner (1954-1958). She is an exemplar of Jacqueline Dowd Hall’s concept of “the long civil rights movement,” since she was one of the organizers for the first March on Washington Movement alongside A. Philip Randolph in 1941. The result …Read more »

(Un)Clutching My Mother’s Pearls, or Ratchetness and the Residue of Respectability

The recent news that ATL rapper Shawty Lo (of Laffy Taffy fame) may be the potential star of a new reality show featuring him, his 11 children, and his 10 baby mamas had this feminist searching for somebody’s pearls to clutch,  seeing as how even the First Lady’s love of pearls has not inspired me to cop a strand of my own. I watched the trailer for this latest train wreck out of Atlanta in mild disgust and mega internal conflict. On the one hand, I felt compelled to embrace this potential portrayal of what one friend called an “alternate …Read more »

How Do You Get Crunk?

  For us, Crunk Feminism has always been about showcasing the possibilities of existing productively with our contradictions, about embracing our tensions,  about avoiding easy answers, about not preaching to the choir, about struggling and making-meaning in community, and about having side-spliting fun, whenever possible. In short, we believe in getting CRUNK, in all the expansive ways we can imagine that term,  whether that has meant telling it like it is to whomever needs to hear it, rolling hard for the crew, giving the forceful side eye (and a few well-chosen words) to rappers who’ve gotten out of pocket, or conversely …Read more »

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