For black women interested in art, the opportunity to speak with like-minded peers can be few and far between. The lack of space for black women in the art world compelled Jovonna Jones and Samantha Scott to create BlacQurl, an online magazine and platform for black women and femme writers, creatives, and critics.
FLOTUS, Michelle Obama had a run-in with a heckler during a Democratic fundraiser yesterday.
According to reports, Mrs. Obama threatened to leave the fundraiser after confronting a protester who interrupted her planned speech:
“One of the things that I don’t do well is this,” she said to applause from most of the guests, according to a White House transcript. “Do you understand?”
By TaMeicka L. Clear
I saw a conversation in a black lesbian Facebook group about Willow Smith being gay at age 13 and having a girlfriend. The conversation was about the probability that she is gay and if 13 is too young to be gay and have a girlfriend.
I was challenged by some of the comments and concerned mostly around the idea that Black folk seem to have around controlling the behavior and expression of youth. Parental control is a cross cultural issue, however I believe that issues of internalized slavery and colonization cause Black people to worry and attempt to protect Black youth from the ever present notion that “we can’t really do whatever we want because we are not as free as white people are”.
Has there ever been anybody quite like Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliot? We could compare her to the likes of Grace Jones, Madonna, Queen Latifah and maybe TLC or En Vogue, but none would truly do her justice.
Missy thumbed her nose at a plethora of standards – beauty, femininity, decency, racial and ethnic performance; you name ‘em – to craft some of the freakiest, stankiest, dirtiest, weirdest, most memorable music videos of the 1990’s and 2000’s. And unlike the many artists she’s influenced (Gaga and Nicki Minaj, to name a few), Missy’s music was always just as unique, innovative and bizarre as her visual presentation, consistently pushing against the stylistic boundaries of Hip Hop music. Her ability to both rap and sing has set the standard for the generation of female artists that proceeded her, and her collaborations with Timbaland (musically) and Hype Williams (visually) forever-altered the landscape of popular music.
Do yourself a favor, and check out my list of the greatest Missy Elliot music videos of all time; just a quick refresher course on all things Misdemeanor.
What if we treated every little girl of color like we treat Ms. Blue Ivy Carter? What would the world be like if everyone in the world waited with breath held for every little girl of color Spirit to divinely make their grand entree into this world because as Jay Z so methodically rapped in Glory, they are, “Destiny’s Child?” What would the world be like if every father, husband, brother, uncle, nephew, and son made a verbal, but, most importantly, a soul abiding commitment to banishing the shrieking vows and consonants that congeal the five letter word for female dog? What would happen if they did this?
What would happen if every person in the world devoutly and fundamentalist-ly believed that girls of color had a profound purpose? Would they seek as Joseph Mbeh sought with Ms. Blue Ivy Carter’s name to trademark all little girls of color names saying to themselves in the way men often say to themselves about woman-kind, “Let us own them, let us make them ours for we know the brilliancy of their minds.”
What would the world be like?