I want to live the rest of my life, however long or short, with as much sweetness as I can decently manage, loving all the people I love, and doing as much as I can of the work I still have to do.
I am going to write fire until it comes out of my ears, my eyes, my nose holes - everywhere. Until it’s every breath I breathe. I’m going to go out like a fucking meteor.
I responded to a letter with a letter regarding Beyonce, Solange and her most recent cover on NOW Magazine:
The initial complaint:
Knowles no role model for young women
That’s quite a cover photo of Solange Knowles last week – a young black female performer looking provocatively into the camera while sitting on a stack of mattresses (NOW, February 21-27).
The Knowles sisters have always been a classy operation. Beyoncé earned millions performing private shows for a Middle East dictator when she wasn’t taking millions from Pepsi to push their sugar water to young kids. Did you mention any of that in your article? It started by talking about Beyoncé.
Why NOW feels compelled to perpetuate the Knowles agenda is beyond me. Am I happy thinking about young girls checking out your magazine cover? Hell, no.
I think Nick Winter’s assertion that the Knowles sisters are bad role models for young females was an unreasonable claim.
Critiquing Solange based on her sister’s unique “political” choices throughout her career is impartial and biased as it takes away from Solange’s individualism as an artist. I think as an individual who is marginalized as both a woman and a person of colour, Beyonce shouldn’t be blamed for utilizing career opportunities granted to her in order to generate income and expand her publicity. Much like Viola Davis shouldn’t be blamed for making the decision, as an actress, to play a role in a very problematic film like “The Help.” Don’t hate the playa; hate the game.
Let’s also not forget that although Beyonce’s work is rather banal, her entire career revolves around enforcing female empowerment, embracing femininity as a tool, independence, work ethic and self-love. I admit that some of her political choices in her career have been problematic, such as participating in black face or responding back to Harry Belafonte’s criticism of her not advocating for issues within the black community by referencing her humanitarian work for 9/11 (with the assumption that it was a suitable rebuttal). However, I don’t entirely expect political consciousness from a commercial, pop artist. It’s also increasingly more difficult for a marginalized artist to incorporate politics into their work and still achieve a commercial level of success.
Lastly, critiquing NOW’s choice in displaying a “provocative” image of Solange; a woman of colour (who is alas at the peak of her career with new found individualism) is entirely unfair. Provocative imagery of women in the media is a nuanced issue – but to see a woman of colour, front page and displaying a non-conventional form of beauty (for instance, her posing with non-processed hair is a political statement in itself) is directly valuable in many ways to young, coloured females in particular.
It’s also fierce, honey.
It’s me. Standing on rocks. On a beach. Pretending it’s not cold. [via Nabil’s iPhone during photoshoot]
The opening of The Red Balloon, a 1956 fantasy featurette directed by French filmmaker Albert Lamorisse.
in no chronological order:
- exfoliated my face, twice
- caught up on the most recent episode of ‘Girls’
- caught up on the most recent episode of KKTM
- caught up on the most recent episode of Scandal
- decided to add Chef Roble’s show to my list of shows to catch up on by starting from season one
- cleaned my desk
- ate, followed by construction of a new diet in my head
- looked at draft article for ~3mins
- thought of what to eat next
- ate again, followed by guilt of already failing at new diet
- ate again, even when it hurt
- wrote sticky notes of things to do, first item on the list being “finish article”
- did ‘research’ on youtube, which led to jamming to old shitty jLo jams for ~1.5h
- looked at the fridge to find what to eat next
- read into the death of langston hughes (note: has no relevance to anything in my life whatsoever)
- called mother to bring home more food to eat
- looked at draft article for ~13mins, made a few edits
- spent the following ~15mins wondering if it’s too late to pick a new dream to pursue
- wrote this list
I’ve got 99 problems and tryingtodeactivateandremaindeactivatedoffoffacebook ain’t one.
ca. 1965, cyclists by Africville, NS
By: Huda Hassan
Published here, last year.
Marie-Joseph Angelique, Oliver Le Jeune, Michaelle Jean - how recognizable are these names to the majority of our citizens and how well informed are Canadians about the history of blacks in Canada?
Every year that black history month rolls around, our country seems to fall into national amnesia about the complete history of Black Canadians. It was not until my third year in university that I acknowledged how deluded I was as a citizen about the history of blacks in Canada. Fourteen years of public education and all I had come to discover was the atrocities of African-Americans in our neighboring country; a woman named Harriet Tubman and some Canadian Underground Railroad. That was the jest of it.
Somehow the historical facts about slavery in Canada had slipped from the minds of my teachers, or facts such as the first exodus of slaves to Sierra Leone had departed from the east coast of our nation, or the details of black loyalists, immigration restrictions on blacks in the 20th centrury or the story of ‘Africville.’
Unfortunately, certain facts just don’t seem to play a role in the national narrative of our land. Being such a pivotal part of our history, these untold stories should not be limited to one of the shortest months of the year, but instead integrated into our public school curriculums to remind Canadian students like myself that those of African descent played a critical role in the history of shaping our nation, and it didn’t just involve an Underground Railroad.