Tag: black

May 14, 2015 / / academia

By Tope Fadiran

It’s hard out there for white men on college campuses. At least, that’s what American media would have us believe, given its coverage of the current controversy swirling around Dr. Saida Grundy, a Black scholar recently hired (effective July 1, 2015) by Boston University as an assistant professor of Sociology and African American Studies.

In reality, the way in which Dr. Grundy has been unceremoniously shoved into the spotlight proves the exact opposite: Black women on our campuses, even those who have reached the highest levels of educational achievement, are political and cultural targets simply for existing. There is no other explanation for the fact that this all began with a white man whose response to Grundy’s hiring was to go in search of something he could use to undermine her intellectual and professional standing.

Read the Post The Hollow Promise of “Inclusivity”: Saida Grundy and Boston University

July 31, 2012 / / Quoted

by Guest Contributor Aymar Jean Christian, originally published at Televisual

In one episode of Black & Sexy TV’s The Couple, Dude and Chick bicker over space in their small bathroom. In another they have a tit-for-tat over what side dishes to order with lunch. Two people, one location and a common scenario comprise most episodes of The Couple.

“It’s about two people living together. Doesn’t matter what their names are. Doesn’t matter how old they are. Doesn’t matter where they live. They could be anybody,” creator Jeanine Daniels said when I met up with her and the Black & Sexy team in Los Angeles last month. “Anybody could relate to them.”

Welcome to black television during the rise of YouTube, or at least that’s the hope of Dennis Dortch, director of 2008′s A Good Day to Be Black & Sexy and creator of the YouTube channel Black & Sexy TV.

Television today is brimming with black sitcoms. TV Land just premiered The Soul Man with Cedric the Entertainer and Niecy Nash, new networks like Bounce TV are already showing original scripted programs and older networks like BET are ordering more (and more channels are premiering every year). None of these shows have been as buzzy or relevant as classic series from the Eighties and Nineties, from The Cosby Show to Martin. They’re passable and pleasurable, but few could be called new or innovative.

Maybe it’s because our 300-channel universe demands fresher, fleshier shows, and here the web is picking up steam. Web showrunners are innovating largely out of view of cable network executives, from the diverse oeuvre of Al Thompson to the roaring success of Issa Rae’s Awkward Black Girl, now releasing its second season on Pharrell’s premium iamOTHER channel.

Black & Sexy TV has spent the past year carving out a clear niche amidst rising competition among black web series: focusing on artsy realism that shares more in common with Louie than Let’s Stay Together.

“I really wanted to showcase black people in a certain way. Black is beautiful,” Dennis Dortch said. Read the Post Is It A Good Time To Be ‘Black & Sexy’?

March 7, 2011 / / african-american
March 1, 2011 / / Quoted
October 22, 2010 / / advertising
July 8, 2010 / / LGBTQ

by Guest Contributor Aymar Jean Christian, originally published at Televisual

In Brooklyn one night in May I was treated to my very first performance from Monstah Black, an artist who defies categorization, but whose show I would characterize as part-rock concert, part-live art theatre, with a black queer bent. Despite my awe I managed to divert my eyes long enough to dwell on the audience, mostly avant-hip black Brooklyners, but with two notable exceptions: indie filmmaker and artist Hanifah Walidah and, looking a touch out of place, internationally renowned artist Chuck Close.

I started thinking that something rather trendy was going on. Monstah Black seemed to be just one of a several black artists, performers and personalities working today trafficking in what he calls “genderfuckery.” (Though maybe I was just flush from an unusually art-glamorous day at internationally renowned artist David Salle‘s salon with such art world luminaries as Dana SchutzAmy Sillman and Eva Respini in attendance!).

Has black queer (and, in many cases, black androgyny) come back in style?

Read the Post Is Black Queer Back?

June 9, 2010 / / african-american

By Sexual Correspondent Andrea Plaid

Natural Black HairI could barely contain my rage when I saw this item:

In Seattle, Wash., a white male teacher had an 8-year-old African American girl removed from the classroom. In most cases, children are removed for behavioral and disciplinary issues, which is clearly understandable and acceptable; however, this wasn’t the case here.

The teacher removed the girl, claiming her Afro was making him sick. Naturally, the father of the child, Charles Mudede, was extremely concerned after the incident, and, as a result, the girl, who was the only black child in the advanced-placement class, has missed two weeks of school.

The incident, which occurred at Thurgood Marshall Elementary School, was featured on KIRO-TV. The segment showed the hair product the girl used, Organic Root Stimulator’s Olive Oil Moisturizing Hair Lotion, as well as interviews with her mother and lawyer.

Checking out Afrobella’s Facebook page, I found the link to the original story filed by reporter Tonya Mosley, in which she interviewed the student’s mother, the lawyer taking the case, and others:

Bellen Drake still can’t believe she’s here, at a news conference with the NAACP, fighting to get her 8-year-old daughter back into honors classes – all because of hair moisturizer.

“I couldn’t comprehend it. I was trying to make sense of it and it took awhile,” said Bellen.

Bellen says late last month, the teacher pulled her daughter out of class at Thurgood Marshall Elementary and into the hallway.

“My daughter reports that she kept saying she’s afraid and it’s your hair and that she could go to another class for the rest of the day.”

Bellen says the school never contacted her about it, but instead removed the girl from her honors class and into a regular classroom.

“This is about the conduct of an adult and the ramification of that conduct by the principal,” says Vonda Sargent, the family’s attorney.

Someone who reblogged the quote from my Tumblr blog responded that the student’s father, Charles Mudede, has been writing about the situation.  Come to find out the white teacher in question was a white woman, not a man as first reported:

[Just] last week, my daughter—who is 8 and happens to be the only brown person in her Accelerated Progress Program class at Thurgood Marshall Elementary—was ordered out of the classroom because her teacher did not like the smell of her hair. The teacher complained that my racially different daughter’s hair (or something—a product—in the hair) was making her sick, and then the teacher made her leave the classroom. My daughter was aware of the racial nature of this expulsion not only because she was made to sit in a classroom that had more black students in it (the implication being that this is where she really belongs, in the lower class with the other black students), but because her teacher, she informed me, owns a dog. Meaning, a dog’s hair gives the teacher less problems than my daughter’s human but curly hair. Most white people do not have to deal with shit like this. Shit that if not checked and confronted will have permanent consequences for the child. Read the Post White Teacher Kicks out Black Student over Hair-Care Product