There is always something that stirs inside me when I pick up James Baldwin. I find it hard not only to be inspired by him veracious vocabulary and the fiery passion he puts into every sentence. Going into the class room I had anticipated a wide array of discussion topic since The Fire Next Time […]Read more "Reflection: James Balwin and how We View History"
Photographs are powerful objects that take us back to certain memories and places, even if we do not know anyone in the photo. Lorna Simpson uses the power of images in recalling memories in much of her work. Growing up in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, Simpson attended the High School of Art And Design and the […]Read more "Look at me: Photographs and Identity"
In today’s world, it is hard to imagine walking down the street and seeing a body hanging from a tree or a light post. However, for African-Americans during the Jim Crow years, the fear was finding the body of loved one, or being the one attached to the rope. America has a long history with […]Read more "Blood on the Leaves, Blood on the Roots: The Aftermath of Jim Crow"
The story of the immigrant is one that you can still hear today, but the story of changing identity can be a little harder to pin down. When does someone consider him or herself an American vs. when is one seen as an American? Is it when they are officially a citizen? When they participate […]Read more "Do as the Americans Do: Cultural Dialogue and Being American"
“I’m Socrates but my skin more chocolatey” -Kanye West, “See Me Now,” My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, 2010 When we spoke about artistry and provocativeness last class, immediately my mind jumped to Kanye West. Most everybody in our class knows that I am an unapologetic Kanye lover. I love his music, his antics, his rants, […]Read more "An Artist & An Asshole: Deconstructing Kanye West"
In 2010, Michele Norris, renowned journalist and author, set out to promote her first book, The Grace of Silence: A Memoir. At the same time, she wanted to “foster a wider conversation about race in America” and subsequently started what is known today as The Race Card Project. Norris is noted as “one of the […]Read more "The Race Card Project"
Three of the main racial stereotypes applied to black women today were formulated to rationalize the treatment of black slave women by white owners. These stereotypes—Mammy, Jezebel, and Sapphire—were crafted to assuage owners who treated slave women atrociously. By asserting that female black slaves were overly lewd or angry, white slave owners justified raping and […]Read more "Racial Stereotyping: Black Women and the Need to Shift the Narrative"
“Some may ask, why bring up ‘the past’ and these atrocities now?…we should bring these events up so we can face our collective past in order to see how it might affect the present and future.” –The Mary Turner Project Lynching is a difficult, painful topic from U.S. history that does not often find its […]Read more "Addressing the Legacy of Lynching: The Mary Turner Project"
Lynching in American history is often thought of as a phenomenon of the past, entrenched in the Civil Rights movement of the South. Although this is partially correct, both academics and the public need to expand the way we think of this difficult subject. There are far-reaching repercussions from these events that happened throughout time […]Read more "Rethinking Lynching in American History"
In his 1903 masterwork The Souls of Black Folk, W.E.B. Du Bois wrote movingly and incisively about the educational systems he encountered as a student, teacher, scholar, and activist. As a child in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, a college student at Fisk, a graduate student at Harvard, and a college professor at Wilberforce and Atlanta University, […]Read more "Separate Schools and the Legacy of Brown"