Image via Bart Everson

Here’s What’s Missing From Reporting On Chicago’s ‘Bloody August’

Four-hundred people were shot in Chicago within the span of 31 days. Ninety of them died. Multiple outlets, including The Washington Post and CNN, are calling August the deadliest month the city has experienced in two decades.

Some news reports implicated widespread gang violence within the city for the drastic uptick in crime, while others focused on the influx of firearms from neighboring states with looser gun laws. A new documentary from BBC, titled “Lost Streets Chicago,” hones in on the impact of the seemingly inescapable violence concentrated in minority neighborhoods, with residents describing them as tantamount to “third-world countries.”

Photo from

New ‘Melanites’ Doll Line Offers Different Images Of Black Boyhood

As we’ve seen through the influx of data and media coverage on Black boys, they often lose their innocence at the hands of someone else, someone who has stereotyped and criminalized their Blackness continuing the mindset that because they are Black, they don’t deserve innocence. And, while this won’t be changed overnight, Jennifer Pierre is taking the issue of Black boyhood into her own hands and is releasing a new line of dolls for boys of color called “Melanites.”

ava duvernay

Ava Duvernay’s New Documentary on Mass Incarceration Will Change The Game

Ava Duvernay’s documentary, The 13th, will be the opening film at the New York Film Festival’s (NYFF) 54th Festival. It’s the first non-fiction film to open the event in the NYFF’s history; if you haven’t already, let us toast to Duvernay’s #BlackGirlMagic. I want to take it a step further though, I want to uplift Duvernay’s message.

The documentary is appropriately titled to address the ironies between the 13th Amendment that simultaneously “abolished” slavery and also created mass incarceration over time.


Viola Davis and Kerry Washington are Creating Production Companies

So far, 2016 has been a wonderful year for Black woman seizing their own opportunities. Early this spring, Kelly Rowland announced that she plans on starting a makeup line for dark-skinned women.  Shea Moisture is taking a stand against the racism in the beauty industry. Recently, it was announced that Kerry Washington and Viola Davis are launching independent production companies. Take a moment to embrace all this Black girl magic.

Picture from Pierre Jean-Louis' Instagram.

Jean-Louis’ Images are a Reminder of the Beauty and Power of Black Hair

Earlier this year, Pierre Jean-Louis, an artist based on the East Coast, posted a photo of a Black woman’s hair that he reimagined as a piece of art that looked like a perfectly coiled galaxy. Since then, Jean-Louise has continued to post artistic renditions of Black women’s hair on Instagram, and every photo is as beautiful as the last.  


Kelly Rowland’s New Makeup Line Is For Us Highly Melanated Folks

I have a confession for you and I hope that the Beyhive won’t come for me: During the era of Destiny’s Child, Kelly Rowland was my favorite.  This week, my adoration for her has only grown after the announcement that her and her makeup artist, Sheika Daley, are launching a makeup line aimed at customers who are blessed with a lot of melanin. It’s about time.