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American Hairdresser - March 1969 by Devon Parks

American Gods Alphabet: Marie Laveau / Widow Paris

I really love American Gods and mythology so I made an alphabetic list of every reference made in the novel.

Read the whole encyclopedia here

Marie Laveau / Widow Paris (295)

Marie Laveau / Widow Paris (American / Voodoo) Hairdresser known as the Queen of Voodoo in Louisiana (1801-1881). Marie Lavaeu was married to a man named Jacques Paris who had disappeared, thus naming herself the Widow Paris after his disappearance. Laveau was a hairdresser and figurehead of the community in New Orleans. She often gave advice to customers, both black and white, as well as protection via voodoo spiritual practices. She often held ceremonies in her backyard, summoning spirits such as Damballah-Wedo, who would appear as a snake. It was said that her body was often possessed during these ceremonies. She was a mother-figure to the community and provider of spiritual support until her death in 1881.

All names/terms are depicted with the page in which they first appear in the American Gods Tenth Anniversary Edition of the author’s preferred text.

Read the whole encyclopedia here

anonymous asked:

I saw the post you reblogged about cultural appropriation and I just wanted to let you know that when non-white(not of european descent) americans get upset about people not from their culture wearing articles or using words/traditions from their culture its because they or people they know have been made fun of for doing things from their culture. I'm african-american and I've been made fun of for wearing traditional african hairstyles but when white(european americans) do it its cool or trendy

Okay, so I’m going to make yet another long post, and I’m sorry for any of my followers it may disturb (bear with me) and really, this is going to be the only post on this subject I will make, so better say everything I want to say.

There are a few things that bother me about cultural appropriation as a concept championed by Tumblr and I’m going to explain why.

But first I want to say that I do sympatise with you if you don’t feel safe engaging in your own brand of American culture (the one who was brought and created by Black people there) in the USA. This is fucked up and this should not happen and indeed this sort of mockery needs to be called out. No one should feel othered in their own home, so I want you to know that I am NOT invalidating your experience in any way.

That being said, there are a few things that I dislike with the way tumblr is pushing that concept:

- For starter, there is how extreme it is. You have a non-negligeable portion of Tumblr who will insist that ANYTHING is cultural appropriation. From language, to ways of dressing and even going as far as saying that certain body shapes are inherently “black” or “white” and that if a white girl has the misfortune to be born with a hourglass shape, she is culturally appropriating. Now, there is something to be said about how those forms were looked at as oddities when black women were having them, but attacking those girls for the body they were born with and couldn’t help but have seem like going too far for me. Especially for a bunch of people who pretend to promote body positivity but yet have no qualms about body shaming those they don’t like if it means they can push another one of their point at the moment. Not to mention that, what of the black girl who is born with no forms, or with a small nose or with straight hairs? Are they not black enough? You can’t appropriate a body shape because body shapes do not belong to anyone, neither do hairs or face features, it is absurd to pretend that they do, and it can lead nowhere but to more prejudice, more hatred and more racism.

As for the language part… well… I wouldn’t be here talking to you if this was to be applied, I would be speaking en Français et je n'aurais probablement aucun moyen de te répondre parce que ni toi ni moi ne saurions parler une autre langue… see? And we would end up in a world where people are completly closed to anyone who aren’t their own and looking at each other with mistrust. I don’t think people here realise how close this kind of thinking is from far right nationalism; what they are pushing sounds like nothing else but protectionist bullshits straight out of Marine Le Pen’s mouth to me (Marine Le Pen is France’s very own far right politician).

- Second, I just don’t see how the brand of “cultural appropriation” as pushed by this website can lead anywhere but with the death of the cultures they are pretending to protect if it was to be applied like they say it should.

People here are acting like cultures are those untouchable, unchanging things that are to be put in museums and touched by no one but the people who created them. But while artpieces can be part of a culture, a culture itself is not an artpiece or an historical artifact. Culture is alive, it is breathing, it is living, it is engaged in by everyone, every day and it is always changing, moving, new things get added while others are abandoned.

You simply can’t put a culture inside of a shrine and decide this or that part is not to be touched, because culture is to be shared, it is MEANT to and in all times it always has been. We all appropriated greek culture when we decided that “man… that democracy thing is a cool concept, I’ll use that”, do you really think it would have been better if the western world hadn’t for the sake of avoiding “cultural appropriation”? Of course it would not.

In an increasingly globalised world, it is simply naive, misguided if not outright dangerous to push for culture to be enshrined instead of shared, and really this is the heart of where I disagree with that concept: people can’t seem to understand that there is a difference between cultural sharing and cultural appropriation. I mean, I have seen people here calling out a 10 years old for “culturally appropriating” because she came back from whatever African country she visited with braided hairs, or calling out people for eating food that aren’t their own, how is that right? Which leads me to my next point..

- People’s vision of cultural appropriation is horribly American-centered. Americans decide which culture deserve protection from appropriation and which does not according to which american groups are opressed in the USA and they see no problems with imposing those standards to everyone everywhere no matter how little it makes sense in other parts of the world. They have an issue with people eating mexican food, but not with people wearing berets (not that they should mind you!) because mexicans are opressed in the USA while French/Europeans aren’t.

I’ll give a concrete example; a few years back, Avril Lavigne did a video where she included Japanese cultural items, a video which she aimed at her Japanese audience. Americans were outraged by this, called her a racist for culturally appropriating and decided to be offended on the behalf of the  Japanese everywhere, meanwhile the Japanese either loved it or didn’t see the big deal. Because guess what? Japanese culture is alive and well in Japan, it is not in any danger of disapearing, Japanese culture isn’t endangered or insulted by Avril Lavigne showing some appreciation for it and pandering to her Japanese audience, it is lively enough not to be. Just because a group is opressed in the USA doesn’t mean it is everywhere and Americans REALLY need to learn to make that difference, stop pushing their constructs on places where it doesn’t make any sense and stop trying to be everyone’s voice.

And especially NOT when those they are trying to defend actually appreciate when others show interest in their cultures (I rebloged a great post about that here regarding South Korea ), try out their food, read about their history, their customs, read their literature or watch their movies…etc… Americans need to learn to stop wanting to decide what’s offensive and what is not for anyone but themselves. They need to learn to stop wanting to speak for everyone, because they can’t, not everyone has their history and issues and they only end up silencing those they want to defend by speaking over them instead. I sympathise with your struggles and I never mean to imply that they aren’t real, but they can’t be applied to everyone, it’s as simple as that.

Cultural appropriation for me makes sense when it is someone who isn’t a native american wearing a feathered hairdress - which hold deep meaning to them - and doing it in a way that is mocking and disrespectful. However it doesn’t make sense when it’s people claiming dreadlocks belong to african people and no one else despite those hairs having appeared in every part of the world just because in the USA they tend to be worn by blacks and mocked when worn by them.

TL:DR: there is a difference between cultural appropriation and cultural sharing (which has always happened and will continue to happen) and you CAN’T impose US standards everywhere. This is my issue with it.

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Raúl Castillo, Star of “Looking,” Settles In To His New Role: Heartthrob

Raúl Castillo was nervous the day he had to come out as straight.

“It was that first day we were shooting on Muni, going back and forth on the train,” said the 38-year-old star of “Looking,” the short-lived HBO drama that followed a group of gay friends in San Francisco. His scene partner was Jonathan Groff, the gay actor playing the main character, Patrick.

“We were talking about a love affair, or at least the beginning of a love affair between these two guys,” Mr. Castillo recalled, walking around Hell’s Kitchen on a recent Friday afternoon. “And I brought up meeting my girlfriend for the first time. But I did so trepidatiously, because I didn’t want to spoil any kind of chemistry that was beginning to happen.”

Mr. Groff, to his relief, “didn’t bat a lash.” They went on to film one of the pivotal moments of the pilot episode, when Patrick strikes up a spontaneous, often fraught romance with Mr. Castillo’s character, Richie, a Mexican-American hairdresser he meets on public transportation.

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alexandra-again  asked:

Hi, I'm a white Australian and would like to know more about the greaser aesthetic being stolen from Mexican-Americans. I only know about pachucos, with their zoot suits but admittedly-similar hairstyles, though one Italian-American hairdresser to James Dean claims to have created a similar style in the 40s. Were Marlon Brando and James Dean, in the early 50s, thieves? What about T-shirts and jeans, which they made big? Sorry for rambling.

Hi. If you would like to know more, I invite you to take the germ of fact I offered and chase it down! It’s all out there, from the term Greaser being strictly for Mexican Americans as far back as well, the Greaser act of 1855 (I think) that targeted and outlawed Mexican ‘vagrants’ who suddenly were all over the territory the States just swiped from Mexico, to the look that the Pachuco evolved. Tres Flores, pompadour, ducktail, and the zoot suit that soon gave way to leather jackets. (Black Harlem introduced the Zoot Suit. Mexican Americans wearing them were specifically targeted by the US armed forces later, when it was understood to be a political act in the Chicano community; the creating and wearing of a suit using extravagant amounts of fabric while the USA wanted all resources to go to war.)

Of course, you’ll have a hard time finding the true thread unbroken–much like in Australia where the land and culture of Aboriginals has been steadily devoured and history reshaped to suit the colonizing group–in White America, history is similarly glossed over. And “White” Americans continually claim ownership of culture they take from Black and Brown. Wikipedia, adored by many and used as original sourcing these days, is a great aid to that forgetting. e.g., You mention the hairstyle, and Wikipedia traces the pompadour to King Louis XV and mentions Elvis, the Italians (as you have), and even the Japanese. But nowhere does it mention Cholos, Cholas, or Pachucos. So there is a strong anti-Brown and anti-Black bias in ascribing ‘history.’ And before long, the obvious becomes the obscure, and truth is lost to those who don’t insist on finding or knowing it themselves.

Good luck on your discoveries!

PS: From The Emergence of Mexican America: Recovering Stories of Mexican Peoplehood,  By John-Michael Rivera

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Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern’s Hair

My CP crush is in full swing….What is it with American guys (that aren’t hairdressers by trade) that can do ladies’ hair? Why can’t they teach British guys to do the same!

St. Martin de Porres (1569-1639) was born in Lima, Peru. He was the illegitimate son of a Spanish nobleman and a freed slave woman from Panama, of either African or Native American descent. His parents never married. For the first eight years of his life his father did not acknowledge him, and abandoned the family after Martin’s sister was born. St. Martin de Porres grew up in poverty with the societal stigma of being mix-raced. When he was 15 he joined the Dominican friars as a helper, eventually becoming a Lay Brother. He nursed the sick in the monastery infirmary as well as the sick of the townspeople. He founded an orphanage, tended to slaves brought from Africa, and dispensed alms to the needy. His prayers and penances were so great that he soon demonstrated miraculous powers. In addition to healing the sick, his other miracles were bi-location, levitation, hidden knowledge, and the ability to communicate with animals. Word of his sanctity spread and people from all walks of life came to him for spiritual direction. St. Martin de Porres is the patron saint of social justice, bi-racial people, African-Americans, hairdressers, barbers, public education, public health, and the poor. His feast day is November 3rd.