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Black people don't have that luxury to be able to tap out...

"Too often, when I'm using my fiber-optic space to share, vent, rant, and process the realities of being Black in America, I'm faced with White people responding with comments and private messages that I'm attacking, disappointing, angering, or hurting them. Or, they use patronizing language like, 'Stacey, you're much smarter than this,' or 'I thought you were a more reasonable person.'

"How do I let them know that when I say things like 'White supremacy needs to be destroyed,' that I'm not talking about personally destroying them? How do I not become frustrated at those who jump in to debate and discredit what Black people are experiencing, in our own threads?" White Women, Please Don't Expect Me to Wipe Away Your Tears, by Stacey Patton at Dame Magazine. [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Dec 17, 2014 - 44 comments

From symbol of black self-sufficiency to symbol of ridicule

How Watermelons Became a Racist Trope
posted by flapjax at midnite on Dec 8, 2014 - 42 comments

Decopage! (Not the paper kind, the 1989 L.A. public access tv kind!)

Decoupage! was a 1989 Los Angeles-area public access show produced by Kathe Duba and hosted by Summer Caprice. The original concept was an emulation of early 70s sydicated talk shows such as The Mike Douglas Show and Dinah! and featured elaborate sets, sourced from hours of scouring thrift stores. Also, there are wigs. Lots of wigs.

Many of the guests were culled from the L.A. club and arts scene, including Redd Kross, Phranc, and Fred Willard. The show returned to the airwaves in 1997 as Decopage! 2000 and featured a spoken-word performance by Exene Cervanka (using her real last name, Cervankova) and Karen Black singing "Bang Bang" with back-up band L7.

• Direct link to the Decopage! You Tube Channel

[via]
posted by Room 641-A on Nov 7, 2014 - 9 comments

I don’t think I was born white. I think white children are manufactured.

Quinn Norton: The White Problem & How White People Got Made [more inside]
posted by flex on Nov 5, 2014 - 24 comments

Afrofuturism: The New Wave

A New Wave of Black Filmmaking: Experimental and Black Speculative Indie Films "A brief survey of the contemporary Black independent film scene yields a long and ever-growing list of experimental and Black speculative (including horror, Afrofuturism, sci-fi, fantasy, fan fiction) short cinema, film trailers, music videos and other projects. (/The Atlanta Black Star) [more inside]
posted by TheGoodBlood on Oct 12, 2014 - 4 comments

The One Crime the Media Won't Blame on Black Men

Among other common myths and misconceptions regarding serial murder in America, one curious myth bears closer examination: the idea, propagated heavily in the media, that serial killers are almost always white men. This fascinating (though weirdly formatted) essay discusses this phenomenon, and suggests possible reasons for the anonymity of African-American serial killers, including historical racial bias, stereotypical media portrayals of African-Americans, and the FBI’s promotion of static ethnocentric criminal profiling. [more inside]
posted by showbiz_liz on Oct 7, 2014 - 32 comments

Black Males, Autism, and the Police

"He’s black, male and autistic," she says. "[I] never know if he’ll be accosted. You ask questions later and you shoot first. It’s happened too many times all over this nation." In the wake of Ferguson, parents of autistic young men of color discuss their fears. [more inside]
posted by magstheaxe on Sep 3, 2014 - 13 comments

Digital Discrimination: The Case of Airbnb.com

[...]non-black [AirBnb] hosts earn roughly 12% more for a similar apartment with similar ratings and photos relative to black hosts. [more inside]
posted by threeants on Aug 28, 2014 - 43 comments

...takes greater formal and intellectual risks than most

The New York Times calls David Mitchell's new novel, "The Bone Clocks," his most ambitious novel. This is significant because his other novels are fairly ambitious. [more inside]
posted by entropone on Aug 25, 2014 - 24 comments

What Can a White Man Say About a Black Woman’s Hair?

Jenée Desmond-Harris, associate editor of features for The Root, answers a reader who wrote in wondering if his compliment of a stranger's Afro was out of line. Though acknowledging that some women won't want to hear a compliment, regardless, Desmond-Harris elucidates three points on how to compliment a black woman's hair without being a jerk: 1) Hands to yourself. 2) Compliment, don't query. 3) Consider the context.
posted by girlmightlive on Aug 14, 2014 - 136 comments

I will name him "Puffy"

Petaluma couple rescue tiny ambulatory pom-pom; turns out to be rare shorebird. [more inside]
posted by oneirodynia on Aug 12, 2014 - 23 comments

Math and equations are fun.

The power of math: 17 Equations That Changed the World - a one table summary of the book by Ian Stewart FRS. Business Insider gives its interpretation of the importance of each equation. Brain pickings (2012) on this book and equations, and another extract from the book. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore on Aug 10, 2014 - 36 comments

"I look like her, and she looks like me."

Disney Junior's Doc McStuffins is an animated children's show about 6-year-old Dottie McStuffins, who wants to be a doctor like her mother, and pretends to be a doctor to her toys. Doc McStuffins has done well as a TV show, but it's as a doll that Doc's success has been stratospheric, with over $500 million in sales last year. “'When little white girls embrace Doc McStuffins, for them Doc McStuffins is a girl, and Doc McStuffins is powerful,' Dr. [Margaret Beale] Spencer said. 'For a little black girl, it may be all of those things, but also that she’s black.'”
posted by ocherdraco on Jul 31, 2014 - 37 comments

NYC's push to change elite high school admissions

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio has called for changing the admissions criteria of NYC's elite high schools, arguing that relying solely on a single exam (the SHSAT) "creates a “rich-get-richer” dynamic that benefits the wealthy, who can afford expensive test prep. However, the reality is just the opposite. It’s not affluent whites, but rather the city’s burgeoning population of Asian-American immigrants — a group that, despite its successes, remains disproportionately poor and working-class — whose children have aced the exam in overwhelming numbers." [more inside]
posted by gemutlichkeit on Jul 20, 2014 - 73 comments

How much more black could this be? The answer is none. None more black.

One step closer to the Disaster Area stuntship. "It's so...black!" said Ford Prefect, "you can hardly make out its shape...light just seems to fall into it!"
posted by paleyellowwithorange on Jul 17, 2014 - 78 comments

Black France

A three-part series looking at the history of France's black community and their long struggle for recognition. French President Francois Hollande ran on a platform promising to eliminate the word 'race' from France’s constitution. But critics were quick to point out the disparity between constitutional reform and actual practice. [more inside]
posted by whyareyouatriangle on Jul 16, 2014 - 6 comments

flipping the script

A viral video series uses role reversal to humorously highlight casual insensitivities & stereotyping: If Asians Said The Stuff White People Say - If Black People Said The Stuff White People Say - If Latinos Said The Stuff White People Say (YouTube; each video ~2 min.) [more inside]
posted by flex on Jul 16, 2014 - 205 comments

Who owns a gesture?

On July 8, the Daily Mississippian published Sierra Mannie's Op-Ed, "Dear white gays", which was then picked up by Time Magazine, and has spurred discussion on whether white gay men are stealing the culture of black women.
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Jul 12, 2014 - 163 comments

"A Subtlety" & We Are Here

Why I Yelled at the Kara Walker Exhibit: "Anger shot up my body like a hot thermometer. Face flushed, I walked to the Mammy sphinx. Couples posed in front of it, smiling as others took their photos. So here it was, an artwork about how Black people’s pain was transformed into money was a tourist attraction for them... Something snapped... I yelled that this was our history and that many of us were angry and sad that it was a site of pornographic jokes." [more inside]
posted by flex on Jul 2, 2014 - 170 comments

"It’s easy to take glamour for granted."

Black Glamour Power - a Collectors Weekly interview with Nichelle Gainer of Vintage Black Glamour (previously): "A lot of people think of vintage black pictures as either civil-rights photos or black ladies at church, or maybe sharecroppers picking in the cotton fields and sweating from the hard work. That’s fine. Those are our pictures. But that shouldn’t be the only image of us. It’s nice to see a black woman who is not sweating in the field, but glistening from all this bling, like Josephine Baker, dripping in diamonds. Sometimes you want to see that. Why not? It’s easy to take glamour for granted. You can be a white woman, and you can care less about Bette Davis, Jean Harlow, Greta Garbo, and Marlene Dietrich, and that’s fine. But you know what? Black women haven’t had the same option." [more inside]
posted by flex on Jun 26, 2014 - 12 comments

Did black people own slaves?

"One of the most vexing questions in African-American history is whether free African Americans themselves owned slaves. The short answer to this question, as you might suspect, is yes, of course … For me, the really fascinating questions about black slave-owning are how many black "masters" were involved, how many slaves did they own and why did they own slaves?" Henry Louis Gates Jr. on black slave owners.
posted by klangklangston on Jun 26, 2014 - 56 comments

“Before I came to America, I didn’t know I was black.”

To be gay, Christian and black in Harlem West African asylum seekers face a new kind of discrimination in the US
posted by infini on Jun 7, 2014 - 7 comments

Ambassadors from Mars

The strange, tragic story of the Brothers Muse. The sideshow called them Eko and Iko, cannibal savages from Borneo, sheep-headed men, ambassadors from Mars, highlighting their signature white dreadlocks in every poster. In reality, they were George and Willie Muse, taken from their parents in 1899 in rural Roanoke, Virginia by bounty hunters working for sideshow producers fascinated by their albinism. [more inside]
posted by Gucky on May 29, 2014 - 7 comments

Bonding. James Bonding.

Bonding over Bond: Superego’s Matt Gourley and Matt Mira of The Nerdist Podcast love James Bond so much they decided to make a podcast about it. Each episode they invite a guest to take a serious — and seriously funny! — deep dive into “the greatest film franchise known to man.” Oh, and it's called James Bonding! (Of course there are Paul F. Tompkins epsiodes, why do you ask?) [more inside]
posted by Room 641-A on May 4, 2014 - 18 comments

#000000 and #FFFFFF

Chaos Magazine brings together Papis Loveday and Shaun Ross for a photoshoot. Behind the scenes.
posted by divabat on Apr 23, 2014 - 1 comment

Resegregation in the American South

The most recent story in ProPublica's Living Apart: Examining America's Racial Divide series is "Segregation Now," which focuses on the Tuscaloosa, Alabama, city school district "and its fleeting experience with the challenges and virtues of integration." But beyond Tuscaloosa, "almost everywhere in the United States, the gains of integration have been eroded. And nowhere has that been more powerfully and disturbingly true than in the South – once home to both the worst of segregation and the greatest triumphs of integration. Freed from the federal oversight that produced integration, schools districts across the 11 former states of the Confederacy have effectively re-instituted segregation for large numbers of black students, in practical terms if not in law." [more inside]
posted by zarq on Apr 17, 2014 - 90 comments

The First Black Graduate of the University of Vermont

For a while, the first African American graduate of the University of Vermont was George Washington Henderson, who would become the first black inductee to Phi Beta Kappa. Except he wasn't the first black graduate... [more inside]
posted by papayaninja on Mar 16, 2014 - 8 comments

"'You aren't black on the inside' - childhood friends"

I, Too, Am Harvard. A photo campaign highlighting the faces and voices of black students at Harvard College. 63 students participated, sharing their experiences with ignorance and racism. "Our voices often go unheard on this campus, our experiences are devalued, our presence is questioned-- this project is our way of speaking back, of claiming this campus, of standing up to say: We are here. This place is ours. We, TOO, are Harvard." [more inside]
posted by zarq on Mar 5, 2014 - 38 comments

There were difficulties.

"This project started with my dad on Thanksgiving. He was reminiscing about Doug Williams, who in 1988 became the first black quarterback to start and win a Super Bowl. All these years later, he was still proud of Williams, whose name to some may be that of a half-remembered player from the past but to millions of others remains a powerful symbol of progress. It stayed with me, and it seemed that it was worth telling the story not just of Williams, but of everyone—of all those generations of players who struggled so that Russell Wilson could be, simply, a good young quarterback." Deadspin's The Big Book of Black Quarterbacks.
posted by davidjmcgee on Feb 6, 2014 - 16 comments

What is it like to be an African-American atheist

In this short documentary, filmmaker Darrin Johnson explores the status of atheism within African-American families and communities, and meets some non-believers from California about their experiences with breaking from religion.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Jan 19, 2014 - 27 comments

Black hi hats

Drummer Dave Black was a long time educator in drum set education. Here he shows that a drummer can express himself completely only using one instrument, in this case the the hi hat.
posted by Quonab on Dec 3, 2013 - 9 comments

I got a bomb in my temple that is gonna explode

Songs from Pearl Jam's 1991 debut album Ten, stripped of all but Eddie Vedder's vocals: Once. Even Flow. Alive. Black. Jeremy. Oceans. Release. Apart from highlighting Vedder's unique voice, phrasing and harmonzing, these vocal mixes expose some interesting studio effects applied to his voice (on 'Even Flow', for example).
posted by paleyellowwithorange on Nov 14, 2013 - 39 comments

The Logic of Stupid Poor People

"If you are poor, why do you spend money on useless status symbols like handbags and belts and clothes and shoes and televisions and cars? One thing I’ve learned is that one person’s illogical belief is another person’s survival skill."
posted by parudox on Oct 29, 2013 - 393 comments

Black Managers in English Football

Why are there so few black managers in English football? Sol Campbell thinks he'll have to leave England and go abroad to find his opportunities.
posted by josher71 on Sep 27, 2013 - 6 comments

From Protest to Politics

From Protest to Politics by Bayard Rustin, the civil rights leader almost erased from history. "From Protest to Politics" talks about the difficulty of moving beyond symbolic victories into lasting justice for the Civil Rights Movement.
posted by klangklangston on Aug 28, 2013 - 13 comments

Operators will avoid flying during the Temple burn.

New Policy on Drones. Black Rock City Drones that is.
And a very cheery and relaxation-inducing 5-minute video shot with such an UAV (Unmanned aerial Vehicle). Floating around the Burning Man playa. [more inside]
posted by fantodstic on Aug 20, 2013 - 59 comments

The Talk: how to de-escalate a situation, for young people of color

"It's a lesson that many of us got from out folks at some point, often before we got that other uncomfortable parent-child conversation about the birds and the bees. Don't move suddenly. Answer questions clearly, and with yes, sir and no, sir. Don't raise your voice. If you're handcuffed, don't say anything until we [your parents] get there. The details differed depending on where you lived and your parents' particular concerns, but the point was for us to get through any encounter with the police without incident." [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Jul 15, 2013 - 52 comments

a long tradition of black artists for whom self-love is a political act

In Defense Of Kanye’s Vanity: The Politics Of Black Self-Love
"Kanye West has become a pop-culture punch line, but those who have dismissed him as aimlessly arrogant have missed the point. He is part of a long tradition of black artists who have fashioned a deeply political articulation of what it means to love yourself."

Previously on Metafilter: Complete awesomeness at all times
posted by andoatnp on Jun 22, 2013 - 284 comments

BLACK: My journey to yo-yo mastery.

Delightfully funny, self-honest, interesting and wise. More about personal evolution really than the yo-yo. Some intelligent laughs and inspiration here. It's a TED talk: BLACK: My journey to yo-yo mastery. Actual use of yo-yo begins at 4:00.
posted by nickyskye on Apr 23, 2013 - 8 comments

"I will never straighten out my wrist."

Navigating Masculinity as a Black Transman.
posted by klangklangston on Apr 5, 2013 - 30 comments

"somebody took the time to make a doll in your likeness"

Black Is Beautiful: Why Black Dolls Matter discusses the history and importance of black dolls. Resources referenced in the article include the Black Doll Collecting blog, The National Black Doll Museum of History and Culture, The Philadelphia Doll Museum, and the trailer for the documentary film "Why Do You Have Black Dolls?"
posted by lalex on Mar 28, 2013 - 21 comments

"The American Revolution is not a story just for white people."

"We’ve coined a term," said Katrinah Lewis, the actress who typically interprets Lydia. "Post-traumautic slave syndrome." The Washington Post reports on African American actors who interpret the lives of slaves at Colonial Williamsburg.
posted by Snarl Furillo on Mar 11, 2013 - 38 comments

"I am a prime example of American unacceptablility."

Civil Rights is a slam poem performed at last year's Brave New Voices festival. There's a transcript here, though it's worth noting that the page gets the poem's title wrong.

Written and performed by Shanita Jackson and Dakota Oder, it becomes even more impressive when you realize that both women are still teenagers...and from the looks of it, Jackson was only fourteen at the time.
posted by MeghanC on Mar 7, 2013 - 5 comments

Workers of the world... Relax!

"Because work is unnecessary except to those whose power it secures, workers are shifted from relatively useful to relatively useless occupations as a measure to assure public order." -- The Abolition Of Work by Bob Black [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges on Jan 29, 2013 - 92 comments

Hey, you've got your black people in my American TV show!

'I'm a White Girl': Why 'Girls' Won't Ever Overcome Its Racial Problem-an article from The Atlantic with several interesting links on the larger issue of including (or not) black characters into American television.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Jan 23, 2013 - 189 comments

Coronet Instructional Films

From the mid 40s to the mid 50s Coronet Instructional Films were always ready to provide social guidance for teenagers on subjects as diverse as dating, popularity, preparing for being drafted, and shyness, as well as to children on following the law, the value of quietness in school, and appreciating our parents. They also provided education on topics such as the connection between attitudes and health, what kind of people live in America, how to keep a job, supervising women workers, the nature of capitalism, and the plantation System in Southern life. Inside is an annotated collection of all 86 of the complete Coronet films in the Prelinger Archives as well as a few more. Its not like you had work to do or anything right? [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Nov 1, 2012 - 41 comments

Newsnight meets Conrad Black

Do you feel that it's been too long since you watched an interview in which the guest, told by the host that he is a criminal, replies, "You're a priggish, gullible, British fool"? Then, behold, Conrad Black's interview with BBC Newsnight. [more inside]
posted by Dasein on Oct 22, 2012 - 44 comments

40 Black and White Photos that Can't Be Explained

40 Black and White Photos that Can't Be Explained (via)
posted by wittgenstein on Oct 18, 2012 - 84 comments

The honey that melts in your mouth, not in your hand

What to do when your bees develop a taste for the residue of the confectionary process, with some rather visible side effects. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore on Oct 5, 2012 - 65 comments

veterans and rookies, superstars and nobodies

14 Black Male Comedians Talk Television, Tokenism, and not being Post-Racial
posted by psoas on Sep 27, 2012 - 28 comments

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