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 -
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 -
'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 -
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
, 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 -
"I'm trying to get to a point where I accept that marriage may never happen for me."
Audrey belongs to the most unmarried group of people in the U.S.: black women. Nearly 70% of black women are unmarried, and the racial gap in marriage spans the socioeconomic spectrum, from the urban poor to well-off suburban professionals.
African-American Professor of Law Ralph Richard Banks has an intriguing solution: Interracial marriage
posted by Brandon Blatcher
on Aug 7, 2011 -
Melvin Van Peebles made a documentary called Classified X in 1998, about the portrayal of black people throughout the history of American cinema. You can see it on YT in six parts: 1
. Apologies for the low video quality.
posted by Dim Siawns
on Nov 30, 2010 -
The Jackie Robinson of architecture.
An orphaned African American boy from downtown Los Angeles, Paul Revere Williams
wanted to be an architect, and when he mentioned his career goal the high school guidance counselor ”stared at me with as much astonishment as he would have had I proposed a rocket flight to Mars... Whoever heard of a Negro being an architect?
”. Therefore, Williams learned to read and draw upside down -- he knew that white clients would not sit next to him -- graduated from USC
and in 1924 became the first certified African American architect west of the Mississippi. In a 50-year long extraordinary career,
he designed landmarks like the Theme restaurant
at Los Angeles International Airport
(with Welton Becket
), the LA County Courthouse
, the Hollywood YMCA
, Saks Fifth Avenue
in Beverly Hills
, restored the Beverly Hills Hotel. Some of his most interesting buildings, like the La Concha Motel
in Las Vegas
have either been razed
to the ground
or, like the "Batman house
", aka 160 S San Rafael mansion
in Pasadena, have been destroyed by fire. Now, Williams' historic Morris Landau House
has been cut into 21 separate pieces
and sits in a Santa Clarita storage yard, rotting away
. More inside.
posted by matteo
on Jul 2, 2006 -
Otis Granville Clark is a wonder. At 102, the former butler of Joan Crawford - who served Clark Gable and Charlie Chaplin - still drives, lives on his own and twice a week attends church in his home city of Tulsa, Oklahoma... Today his blue eyes have gone milky but they still sparkle, his wiry frame remains agile, and his most painful memories are still fresh - even after 83 years. Coiled on the edge of an understuffed sofa, Clark leans back and screws his eyes tight to summon up "that day". It remains the most vivid of his life... Historians call the firestorm that convulsed Tulsa from the evening of May 31 into the afternoon of June 1 the single worst event in the history of American race relations. To most Tulsans it is simply "the riot". But the carnage had nothing in common with the mass protests of Chicago, Detroit and Newark in the 1960s or the urban violence that laid siege to Los Angeles in 1992 after the white police officers who assaulted Rodney King were acquitted. The 1921 Tulsa race riot owes its name to an older American tradition, to the days when white mobs, with the consent of local authorities, dared to rid themselves of their black neighbours. The endeavour was an opportunity "to run the Negro out of Tulsa". Burnt Offerings .See also The Tulsa Race Riot of 1921 or the tale of the lost city or another The Tulsa Race Riot of 1921. See also Frequently Asked Questions from the Tulsa Reparations Coalition. Previous post
re: Tulsa Race Riot Reparations on March 1, 2001 .
posted by y2karl
on Feb 22, 2005 -
African-American == Black?
Several high-school students at a predominantly white (well, predominantly NOT black) Nebraska high school were disciplined for a campaign to get 16-year-old student Trevor Richards awarded the school's annual "Distinguished African-American Student" award. Richards is from South Africa, now lives in America (not sure if he's a citizen, the CNN story isn't clear), but here's the catch: he's white.
posted by Bluecoat93
on Jan 23, 2004 -
How Hip-Hop Holds Blacks Back
As a white guy with a young kid, I worry about how the often gleefully violent, misogynist rap music he may choose to listen to could affect him. Maybe that's a racist thing for a white boy to say, but when a black scholar like John H. McWhorter
says it, maybe it's worth considering.
posted by kgasmart
on Aug 6, 2003 -
Talking the talk: An interview with John McWhorter
Speaking of linguistics and whatnot,
I've been thumbing through the new-look East Bay Express.
I read this, and I feel like McWhorter's
never gotten over some black people wrongly labeling him as an Oreo cookie (never had someone assure him, in response to epithets like those, that there are 35 million ways of being African-American -- and that many of them involve fluency in "totally ass-kicking SWE," to reference David Foster Wallace's essay on Bryan Garner's new usage book in Harper's
a couple of months ago).
I appreciate his iconoclasm (hell, like myself, he voted for Nader) and I'm willing to concede points of his basic argument and that I agree with him on some (the whole "niggardly" thing; the Ebonics controversy) points.
But after reading this, I wound up feeling irritated with him -- and especially put off by allowing himself to be
marketed as a conservative and, despite his vaunted speaking ability and academic credentials, his inability to get his points across in the media.
posted by allaboutgeorge
on Jul 6, 2001 -