"Thanks. It has pockets!"
every girl ever responding to a compliment on a skirt/dress that has pockets (via arabellesicardi)
Long dismissed as a less serious art form, graphic novels have finally started to gain more mainstream credibility over the last 20 years. There are many, many excellent examples out there, but if …
To add to the ever-growing reading list!
NYPD’s Twitter feed deluged with images of brutal arrests and shooting victims after attempt to highlight best of officers’ work
Seriously. What did they think would happen?
GUTS, an open-access, peer-reviewed Canadian feminist magazine, is the outgrowth of a desire for a new kind of community.
Just found out about this online, feminist Canadian magazine
Online, customizable videos to give people an opportunity to practice Fat Yoga® at home.
| #Παɣϰόσμια Ημέϱα Βιϐλίου |
Η 23η Απϱιλίου είναι η Παɣϰόσμια Ημέϱα Βιϐλίου· μια συμϐολιϰή μέϱα ɣια τον ϰόσμο της λοɣοτεxνίας, ϰαϑώς σαν σήμεϱα το έτος 1616 έφυɣαν από τη zωή ο William Shakespeare, ο Miguel De Cervantes ϰαι ο Inca Garcilaso de la Vega. Έτσι, η UNESCO επέλεƶε αυτή τη μέϱα να τιμήσει τα ϐιϐλία ϰαι να παϱοτϱύνει όλους μας, ϰαι ιδιαίτεϱα τους νέους, να αναϰαλύψουν τη xαϱά του διαϐάσματος. Αϰολουϑεί απόσπασμα από το επίσημο μήνυμα της ɣενιϰής διευϑύντϱιας του Οϱɣανισμού, Irina Bokova.
«Η ιστοϱία του ɣϱαπτού λόɣου είναι η ιστοϱία της ανϑϱωπότητας. Η δύναμη που έxουν τα ϐιϐλία όσον αφοϱά την πϱοώϑηση της πϱοσωπϰής ανέλιƶης ϰαι τη δημιουϱɣία ϰοινωνιϰών αλλαɣών είναι απαϱάμιλλη. Σε ένα οιϰείο ϰι όμως ϐαϑιά ϰοινωνιϰό επίπεδο, τα ϐιϐλία παϱέxουν εϰτεταμένες μοϱφές διαλόɣου μεταƶύ των ανϑϱώπων, μέσα σε ϰοινότητες ϰαι στο πέϱασμα του xρόνου.
Όπως η Malala Yousafzai, η μαϑήτϱια που πυϱοϐολήϑηϰε από τους Ταλιμπάν μόνο ϰαιι μόνο ɣιατί ήϑελε να πηɣαίνει στο σxολείο, είπε στην ομιλία της, στα Ηνωμένα Έϑνη: Ας σηϰώσουμε τα ϐιϐλία ϰαι τις πένες μας. Είναι τα πιο ισxυϱά μας όπλα.
Την Παɣϰόσμια Ημέϱα Βιϐλίου ϰαι Πνευματιϰών Διϰαιωμάτων, η UNESCO ϰαλεί όλες τις ɣυναίϰες ϰαι τους άνδϱες να συσπειϱωϑούν ɣύϱω από τα ϐιϐλία ϰαι όλους εϰείνους που ɣϱάφουν ϰαι παϱάɣουν ϐιϐλία. Αυτή είναι μια μέϱα ɣια να ɣιοϱτάσουμε τα ϐιϐλία ως την ενσάϱϰωση της ανϑϱώπινης δημιουϱɣιϰότητας ϰαι την επιϑυμία να μοιϱαστούμε ιδέες ϰαι ɣνώση, να εμπνεύσουμε την ϰατανόηση ϰαι την ανοxή.
Στο ίδιο πνεύμα, το Port Harcourt της Νιɣηϱίας έxει ονομαστεί Παɣϰόσμια Πϱωτεύουσα Βιϐλίου ɣια το τϱέxον έτος, λόɣω της ποιότητας του πϱοɣϱάμματός της, ιδίως στην εμϐάϑυνση στους νέους ϰαι τον αντίϰτυπο που ϑα έxει ɣια τη ϐελτίωση του πολιτισμού της Νιɣηϱίας σxετιϰά με τα ϐιϐλία, την ανάɣνωση, τη ɣϱαφή ϰαι τις εϰδόσεις, έτσι ώστε να ϐελτιώϑουν τα ποσοστά αλφαϐητισμού.
Σε όλα αυτά, ο στόxος μας είναι σαφής – να ενϑαϱϱύνουμε τους συɣɣϱαφείς ϰαι τους ϰαλλιτέxνες ϰαι να διασφαλίσουμε ότι πεϱισσότεϱοι άνδϱες ϰαι ɣυναίϰες επωφελούνται ϰι έxουν πϱόσϐάση στην ανάɣνωση, επειδή τα ίδια τα ϐιϐλία είναι πιο ισxυϱές δυνάμεις μας ɣια την εƶάλειψη της φτώxειας ϰαι την οιϰοδόμηση της ειϱήνης.»
World Book Day or World Book and Copyright Day- also known as International Day of the Book- is a yearly event on 23rd of April, organized by UNESCO to promote reading, publishing and copyright. It is a symbolic date for world literature, as on this date in 1616 Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, William Shakespeare and Inca Garcilaso de la Vega died. It was a natural choice for UNESCO’s General Conference, held in Paris in 1995, to pay a world-wide tribute to books and authors on this date, encouraging everyone, and in particular young people, to discover the pleasure of reading and gain a renewed respect for the irreplaceable contributions of those, who have furthered the social and cultural progress of humanity. The World Book Capital for 2014 is Port Harcourt, at Nigeria. Let’s share an excerpt of the message from UNESCO’s Director-Generalthe, Irina Bokova, for this day.
«The history of the written word is the history of humanity. The power of books to advance individual fulfilment and to create social change is unequalled. Intimate and yet deeply social, books provide far-reaching forms of dialogue between individuals, within communities and across time.
As Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani schoolgirl who was shot by the Taliban for attending classes, said in her speech at the United Nations: Let us pick up our books and our pens. They are our most powerful weapons.
On World Book and Copyright Day, UNESCO invites all women and men to rally around books and all those who write and produce books. This is a day to celebrate books as the embodiment of human creativity and the desire to share ideas and knowledge, to inspire understanding and tolerance.
In the same spirit, Port Harcourt in Nigeria has been named as the 2014 World Book Capital, on account of the quality of its programme, in particular its focus on youth and the impact it will have on improving Nigeria’s culture of books, reading, writing and publishing to improve literacy rates. Taking effect on World Book and Copyright Day, this initiative is supported by UNESCO, along with the International Publishers Association, the International Booksellers Federation and the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions.
In all of this, our goal is clear – to encourage authors and artists and to ensure that more women and men benefit from literacy and accessible formats, because books are our most powerful forces of poverty eradication and peace building.
[*illustration by Jean-François Segura]
The Supreme Court upheld Michigan’s ban on affirmative action Tuesday, but not without a blistering dissent from Justice Sonia Sotomayor.
Sotomayor said the decision infringed upon groups’ rights by allowing Michigan voters to change “the basic rules of the political process … in a manner that uniquely disadvantaged racial minorities.”
"In my colleagues’ view, examining the racial impact of legislation only perpetuates racial discrimination," Sotomayor added. “This refusal to accept the stark reality that race matters is regrettable. As members of the judiciary tasked with intervening to carry out the guarantee of equal protection, we ought not sit back and wish away, rather than confront, the racial inequality that exists in our society.”
The court’s 6-2 decision upheld a voter-approved change to the Michigan state Constitution that prevents public colleges from using race as a factor in its admissions. As the AP noted, the ruling provides a boost for other education-related affirmative action bans in California and Washington state.
ABC News pointed out that Sotomayor has been open about the role affirmative action has played in her personal life. In her memoir “My Beloved World,” Sotomayor wrote that it “opened doors” for her.
"But one thing has not changed: to doubt the worth of minority students’ achievement when they succeed is really only to present another face of the prejudice that would deny them a chance even to try," she wrote.
Read Sotomayor’s full dissent here.
Lupita Nyong’o is on the cover of People as the most beautiful person for 2014 in their annual “50 Most Beautiful” issue. This is the first time that anyone of her complexion has made the cover and she’s only the third Black woman to make the cover, other than Halle Berry (2003) and Beyoncé (2012).
She shared some insights on beauty in a behind the scenes video for the shoot for this cover. She made some really wonderful statements, some of which I included below:
The first person to tell me that I was beautiful was definitely my mother. She said that a lot, especially when I felt the least bit beautiful which is, you know, as an adolescent you go through times when you feel ugly in general. But my mother always said I was beautiful and I finally believed her at some point.
She’s regularly cited her mother as one of her main supporters in terms of fostering her self-esteem in her beauty, inside and out. She mentioned the importance of being content and I truly believe a part of her allure is her joy. It comes through in her every action and it’s beautiful where it just compliments her glorious dark skin, emotive hopeful eyes, adorable nose, incredible smile, and edges of the gawds, all on a remarkable symmetrical face.
I feel most beautiful when I am content. That for me is more important than my physical presentation because it’s through inner contentment and happiness that I care about my presentation.
In the behind the scenes video, she also mentioned the role of laughter in her adult life and this definitely connects to the previous quote in terms of internal contentment being the origin for feeling beautiful.
I think the older I get, the more I laugh. I think I’ve laughed a lot in ways; I wish I remembered to laugh like that when I was a teenager.
This made me think of the carefree Black girl conception that many Black women talk about and it made me happy to hear her discuss the role of laughter. An internal source of joy and confidence in appearance are radical acts for Black women in a society that regularly denies us joy and beauty. I am acutely aware of how people hate Black women and also want us to hate ourselves. This dehumanization isn’t just emotional and interpersonal but is a foundation on which oppressions such as misogynoir and colourism rest on. There are people invested—deeply in fact—in not only Lupita being invisible but that no one find her beautiful. They’re terrified that the status quo may shift even a little. And it wouldn’t be a complete shift. Lupita is still very well educated, from a Black immigrant middle class two-parent family and is thin in accordance with most Hollywood standards, so there are elements of privilege as well.
Even so, that beautiful dark skin on the cover will be a problem for many. There have been Black men heavily invested in making sure no one believes she’s beautiful. This isn’t completely about the cishet Black male gaze in a sexual context, though a factor, but also about how it shifts some cishet Black men’s worldview where they may have nothing but “at least” they aren’t Black women. If Black women are to be loathed, Black men can justify their misogynoir as simply being what everyone else feels about us, and it is what everyone else feels about us. Black men did not invent the hatred of Black women nor do they enact it alone. However, if Black women are not to be loathed and some are even deemed beautiful and valuable—even the ones who don’t meet every Eurocentric bullet point in terms of what “beauty” is—then it shifts the ground for many Black men whose choices and gaze are shaped by misogynoir that remains unchecked. This presents a conflict for them and some have lashed out because of it.
There’s also the issue of the White Gaze where even suggesting that a Black woman is beautiful upsets Whites who think that then means White women are being called “ugly.” They purposely ignore the structural power and privilege difference and even the exposure scale differences in the mainstream for White women versus Black women. When I wrote Yeah, Black Women Are Great. Fin., I made it clear that Black women need the space to celebrate our beauty (and not just aesthetically, though yes, that matters as well when our exterior and interior qualities are degraded on the hour) without the White supremacist notion that not reifying Eurocentric beauty standards at every moment means Black women are somehow “harming” White women or any non-Black women. (The latter can be anti-Black at times and placed “above” Black women, as non-Black women of colour, in terms of beauty, but placed “below” White women. Then there’s the intraracial manifestation of colourism where some light skinned Black women may also reject this cover or dark Black women being considered beautiful as well.)
I’m also aware of those among us Black people who think this cover is as simple as “White approval” yet do not understand how visibility as fully human and recognition matters in the mainstream even as Black people create our own media. This is not an “either/or” situation but a “both/and” one. Representation among the mainstream—as it shapes media, politics and culture, which means it has a great deal of power—is not the desire for interpersonal White favor. It’s the desire for the affirmation of humanity so that we are not punished for not being viewed as human. We may not need Whites’ “approval” of us in the mainstream but we most certainly cannot afford Whites’ dehumanization of us in the mainstream.
While I am not a fan of People and I most certainly don’t read it regularly, I’m also aware of what representation means. Lupita mentioned the importance of representation for Black girls, especially, in a previous speech at Essence Magazine’s 7th Annual Black Women In Hollywood luncheon:
And so I hope that my presence on your screens and in the magazines may lead you, young girl, on a similar journey. That you will feel the validation of your external beauty but also get to the deeper business of being beautiful inside. There is no shame in Black beauty.
Representation as human, as beautiful and as relevant matters for Black women, especially dark Black women (in this case; in other cases Black trans women, fat Black women etc.). Lupita can have this moment without the suggestion that it somehow “harms” Black men (as if their gaze has to matter to Black women at all times) or White women (as if they cannot love themselves unless Black women hate ourselves; well…hmm), without the suggestion that it means Black people no longer care about the media and content that we create ourselves (because let’s be crystal clear here, the mainstream pilfers Black creativity and culture anyway) or any other nonsensical or cruel suggestion meant to harm Black women that everyone was taught to hate. Lupita is clearly at a point of a great deal of self-love. A lot of Black women are. And we deserve to be.
I hope Lupita continues to thrive in her career (the acting one); I look forward to seeing her in any visual media (even as small as her Instagram). This People announcement as “Most Beautiful” made Lupita happy, as she tweeted, so I am (and many people are) happy for her. Congrats to Lupita Nyong’o.
Related Essay Compilation: On Beauty Politics
Happening NOW: 30,000 Chinese workers strike at the world’s largest producer of athletic shoes such as Nike and Adidas over pay, benefits, and the right to choose a union. The strike, China’s largest in decades, has shutdown production for two weeks and caused the company’s stock price to plummet.
Bloomberg News reports:
"Workers have disrupted production in Yue Yuen’s Dongguan factory complex, which employs more than 40,000 people, since April 14 in a dispute over pay, benefits and the right to pick their own union. More than 50 percent of the workers were on strike today, Liu said. China Labour Watch, which estimated the striking workers at about 30,000, said a small number had returned to work, without quantifying it.”
[Image: A collage of Elsie MacGill (powered the Canadian aircraft industry), Yvonne Brill (invented the Resistojet Rocket), Camille W-Alleyne (led the development of the Orion Space Travel Module), Barbara Cartland (invented the long distance glider), and Mary Sherman (inventor of Hydyne fuel).]
Rocket Girls: A Five day series into legends of aerospace engineering
tierracita, jrahrah and I have been accepted to present at AMC within the abundant bodies track and it would mean so much if y’all who have shown me so much love to either donate or share so we can continue doing this hard and necessary work!