so are we ever gonna talk about how contouring as a practice exists to uphold eurocentric features and one of the reasons it got so popular was because everyone is so keyed into what thin white beautiful features look like that they just sort of accepted it as the new Thing? literally contouring is “heres a way to make your features look whiter even if youre not white well then good luck i guess”
Can we stop seeing breasts as purely sexual objects
Can we stop seeing nudity as porn
Can we stop objectifying women and actually treat them as equals
Can we stop ostracizing “feminine” males
Can we stop basing “attractiveness” on Eurocentric standards
Can we stop institutionalized racism & sexism
Can we stop…
In case you haven’t seen it yet, O'Neill Library has recently brought the #CharlestonSyllabus initiative to Boston College.
According to the website, this is “a list of readings that educators
can use to broach conversations in the classroom about the horrendous
events that unfolded in Charleston, South Carolina on the evening of
June 17, 2015.”
We applaud BC’s efforts to confront racism and bring marginalized voices into our curriculum and encourage everyone to check it out, as well as continue to encourage BC to give voice to people of color and shift away from our Eurocentric curriculum!
this is such a great series. I’ve always hated the dead-lesbian-vampire trope, for such obvious reasons, but I’ve also hated that one moralistic Van Helsing type of character who acts like a total fukcing douche around the lesbian vampire because he basically hates women and has a virgin/whore patriarchal complex. Carmilla is seriously turning into a brilliant little story and I hope it goes onto a third season. there are still werewolves (along with metaphors for eurocentric domination over nature) and zombies (eurocentric racist ‘othering’ of the ‘hordes’ that come for those ‘civilized’ types and stamp out their entire societies) to mine. and speaking of mining, Danny’s character still has to become way more self-reflective about the whole evil vs good thing, and her friendship (or more, whatevs) with Laura and potentially down the line, Carmilla, would be way more interesting than killing her off. great show is great.
You're more than welcome man, Europe is a shithole at the moment economically and everything that some people in North America look up to college wise etc is crumbling down due to the recession and they're cutting the budget where it hurts (healthcare, education, military) I hope that North America realises it unsustainable to give these kinds of entitlements during recessions because it's like we Dutch say "mopping with the faucet open" it never ends.
It’s ironic, considering that the people pushing for the European model to be applied to the US are the same people who criticize everything else for being “Eurocentric”
“The first immigrants to Europe arrived thousands of years ago from central Asia. Most pre-contact Europeans lived together in small villages. Because the continent was very crowded, their lives were ruled by strict hierarchies within the family and outside it to control resources. Europe was highly multi-ethnic, and most tribes were ruled by hereditary leaders who commanded the majority “commoners.” These groups were engaged in near constant warfare.
"Pre-contact Europeans wore clothing made of natural materials such as animal skin and plant and animal-based textiles. Women wore long dresses and covered their hair, and men wore tunics and leggings. Both men and women liked to wear jewelry made from precious stones and metals as a sign of status. Before contact, Europeans had very poor diets. Most people were farmers and grew wheat and vegetables and raised cows and sheep to eat. They rarely washed themselves, and had many diseases because they often let their animals live with them.
"Religion infused every part of Europeans’ lives. Europeans believed in one supreme deity, a father figure, who they believed was made of three parts, and they particularly worshiped the deity’s son. They claimed that their god had given humans domination over the earth. They built elaborate temples to him and performed ceremonies in which they ate crackers and drank wine and believed it was the body and blood of their god, who would provide them with entrance into a wondrous afterlife called heaven when they died. Many wars were fought over disagreements about the details of this religion, each group believing their interpretation was the right one that should be spread across the land.”
Now imagine that is part of a textbook that has entire chapters on the Mississippian polities of the 1200s and a detailed account of the diplomatic situation of the southeastern provinces in the 1400s and 1500s, an enormous section that goes through the history of the rise of the Triple Alliance in Mexico and goes through the rule of each tlatoani and their policies, the heritage of Teotihuacan and its legacy in later Mesoamerican politics, elaborate descriptions of the trade routes that connected and drove various nations in North America. Long explanations of the rise of various religious movements such as the calumet ceremony and Midewiwin, and how they affected political agendas and artistic trends. Pages and pages and pages going through the past thousand years of American history century by century.
And these three paragraphs are the only mention of European history before the year 1500.
If your textbook of North American history goes into the details of the Middle Ages, the Reformation and Renaissance, the Silk Road, and European monarchies, and you don’t include equal description of the Mississippian coalescence and dispersal, Haudenosaunee-Algonquian relations, the Woodlands, trans-plains, and southwestern trade systems, the Mexica conquests and the Fifth Sun ideology with explicit naming of various places and leaders, then your textbook is inadequate.
Why do you include those “pre-contact” European things? Because they explain the motivations and reasons for what Europeans did. But people largely imagine North America as this timeless place and don’t recognize that pre-contact American history had just as much of an effect on post-contact history because it provides explanations of the motivations and reasonings behind indigenous peoples’ actions.
But of course, that would require people to recognize that indigenous people had their own histories and agendas and agency that affected the course of history rather than making them a passive recipient of European historical force.
Its not white power its MAJORITY power, POC are not 'persecuted' in coountries where theyre the majority.
When a white person migrates to Africa, he is going from a position of power, to power. An African coming to Europe lands from power into powerlessness. We Africans cannot do much with our diplomas here. Once I had learned Dutch and went to the job centre, they offered me a position as a cleaning lady.And in the shop it happens regularly that someone follows me around to check that I am not stealing anything. In expensive boutiques I might not even get served. The sales personnel assume I cannot afford to buy anything anyway. Whereas a white person in Nigeria, even if he has no skills whatsoever, always gets opportunities. No Nigerian would dream of offering you a job as a cleaning lady.
…Yet magically they think they are in the position to determine where racism is or is not. 2) Varying population densities where Whites are a numerical minority erases racism and White supremacy. This is also false. Whites do not have to have a numerical majority for White supremacy to exist. Because Whiteness impacts the entire globe—you know the globe where over 80% of it has been impacted by colonialism and White supremacy—yet of course actual White people are a numerical minority globally, clearly it can be seen that this is not a numbers issue. Power, platform, and money lie in the hands of small groups that are often White (and usually cis hetero male) lead. Governments, global corporations, and more are concentrated in power and regardless of the race of the person “in charge” reflect the whims of imperialist White supremacist capitalist cisheteropatriarchy.
“The media in black countries is white wtf are white people talking about. White supremacy rules the world. All these books and movies we have in gambia are from america and all of the characters are white why do you think so many black women in african countries bleach themselves to death.In asia tanned and dark skin is looked down upon and are treated as inferior and whites are treated like these pure trophies like white ppl stfu.”
“Adoptive parents have the right to choose between age, country, race, handicap, et cetera. The fact that certain countries remain strong favorites for adoptive parents speaks volumes of how racialized thinking continues to live on under anti-racist surface narratives.
Korea, Ethiopia, and Colombia are countries whose children fit Eurocentric standards of beauty more than others in the same regions; compare children from Korea to children from Malaysia, children from Ethiopia to children from Kenya, and children from Colombia to children from Bolivia. Furthermore, [Western] adoptive parents display a clear preference for girls and ‘racially pure’ children.”
Tobias Hubinette, A Critique of International Adoption [translated from Swedish]
There Is No Nicki Minaj vs. Sandra Bland. Black People Can Discuss Both.
Incredible author, activist and media personality Janet Mock responded so well to the consistent misogynoir (anti-Black misogyny; term coined by the brilliant Moya Bailey) in the media yesterday when she replied toEntertainment Weekly and their poor depiction of Nicki Minaj’s critique of the music industry and Taylor Swift’s response (and EW wasn’t the only outlet to do this either). This came about because Nicki specifically mentioned MTV not nominating “Anaconda” for Video of The Year. This video is an important expression of Black women’s bodies reclaimed as a site of beauty, sensuality, pleasure and in the control of Black women, diverting thin Eurocentric beauty norms and White perceptions of sexuality. It’s also incredibly artistic and playful in a way rarely acceptable for Black women to express ourselves in. In her tweets, Nicki also alluded to misogynoir in the industry in general, and in relation to Black women’s bodies, cultural production and influence. When Nicki tweeted that she is “tired,” it spoke to something really specific in Black women’s experiences with marginalization and erasure.
Taylor Swift wrongly dived into the conversation in true White feminist fashion. However, I am not overly interested in discussing Taylor Swift doing the typical White woman, White feminist four step, though I sent one tweet about it. I have plenty of past writing on derailment, gaslighting, erasure, misogynoir, racism and anti-Blackness from mainstream White feminism and White women, in general. I feel like if people really cared about Black women, this tweet wouldn’t seem like such a revelation or surprise (as some people acted this way). It means that they’re not engaging with the reality that Black women in the media and Black women in our daily lives deal with.
What I am interested in is how some fellow Black people are using this moment for what has been called #TwitterComparisons, where a false equalization is created to silence one topic in place of another, and usually by fellow Black people who exhibit few opinions on either topic presented, outside of baiting other Black people who may express opinions on both. Some Black people are using this conversation about Nicki Minaj to pretend that no Black people are discussing State violence and the suspicious death of Sandra Bland, which I believe was in fact an extrajudicial execution. Her death deeply pains me and is difficult for me to discuss. And this idea that I must discuss it all day is actually quite violent. Further, I still resent what amounts to trading lynching post cards when endless visuals of police harm on her and Black people in general are hyperconsumed and it is virtually impossible to find an article where this is not standard practice. I elaborated on this in yearsof work on what I call “post-mortem media violence.” And to be clear, for the 1,342,338 time, my discussions of post-mortem media violence are NOT solely about my personal mental health care and my psychological response to being expected to endlessly consume visuals of Black death (usually without my consent; the content is usually forced on me) or about self-care/trigger warnings. It is about the dehumanization of Black life, the consumption of the harm on Black bodies as bodies supposedly not truly susceptible to pain, and the lie that the sheer consumption of the hypervisibility of Black death is equal to activism against State violence. (I mention the latter because some people–primarily Whites and Black men–have been willfully misconstruing my work or not even willing to engage it as honestly and as thoroughly as they would if I were White/male.)
Thus, when some Black people suggest that no one should discuss Nicki Minaj and instead discuss Sandra Bland, I have a problem. They are not critiquing the problem with post-mortem media violence being construed as awareness and activism. They are also erasing the amount of activist labor–usually lead by Black women at that–that already exists for Sandra Bland. They are erasing how people responded in sheer pain to further revelations on the case today, such as video footage of Sandra’s encounter with the police that award-winning film director Ava DuVernay alluded to; it may have been tampered with. (I have no issue with specific analysis like this; thoughtful and truthful engagement with my writing on post-mortem media violence would reveal such.) But a larger form of erasure is occurring in three key ways. One way is that this juxtaposition rests on respectability politics. Because some people demonize Nicki for her presentation, her “value” is deemed below someone they view as “respectable” like Sandra Bland was. But see, this same respectability politics issue is why people are more likely to recognize Sandra Bland’s name than Kindra Chapman’s. The second way is the performance for the White Gaze. One of the reasons why some Black people demand silence of joy (beyond both Black and non-Black people being invested in denying Black women joy in general, which I discussed in Misogynoir and The Concerted Effort To Deny Black Women Joy) is the idea that our joy and our pleasure are irresponsible. Or shouldn’t happen anywhere Whites can see. Thus, the idea is that Black people who make jokes about Taylor Swift (or Meek Mill’s odd “expose” tweets last night on rappers who don’t write their own lyrics; which I have thoughts on as well) are not “performing” Black humanity properly and won’t be viewed by White people properly. The trouble with the White Gaze. But…they oppress us and kill us regardless. Regardless. The humanity of Blackness is denied. This anti-Blackness is something that incredible Black thinkers and writers such as Frank Wilderson, Hortense Spillers, Saidiya Hartman, Jared Sexton and @so_treu elaborate on with a specificity and genius unmatched.
The “Angry Black Woman” archetype that the national media uses to harm Nicki Minaj is also used to justify Sandra Bland’s death. Discussing Nicki isn’t frivolous. People say discuss State violence, not pop culture. As if they are not connected via misogynoir. #SayHerName exists because once State violence is discussed, people center Black men. Thus, I already know the “discuss Sandra not Nicki” rebuttal is about erasure of both, actually. “Ignore famous Black woman!” “Focus on Black men for State violence!”
The reason why I am interested in this among us Black people is because this is my focus when I write. Our thoughts. Our feelings. Our healing. Our activism. Our pain. Our pleasure. Especially so for Black women. Thus, I am not interested in arbitrarily pathologizing Black people here. I am interested in how these forced comparisons function as erasure of Black women in our own community. Whether we are trying to live and unknown, whether famous and used as media/public punching bags in ways that impact non-famous Black women let alone those famous ones, whether we are killed via intraracial gender violence or by the State. Thus, there is no service to Sandra Bland that happens by ignoring the very same misogynoir that killed her being used to demonize Black women in the media like Nicki Minaj. Until people understand what anti-Blackness and misogyny actual entail for Black women, we and everyone else will continue to pretend that pop culture and State violence do not operate in the same spheres. The same media that degrades Nicki is the same media engaging in post-mortem media violence of Sandra Bland. This does not mean that Nicki’s fame, platform size and her first generation of wealth should be ignored. Of course Black women–especially womanists and Black feminists–discuss nuances of privilege intraracially and among Black women. See, if able to, we can truly hold multiple ideas and viewpoints in our consciousness simultaneously. The anti-Black ableist lies about inherent inferior Black intelligence are ones that I reject. I don’t think that Nicki should be paid attention to because fame matters more than non-famous people; rich Black celebrities don’t exactly need the same type of defense non-rich non-famous Black people need. Nicki’s situation matters because it is the same misogynoir as to why Sandra Bland is viewed as angry and deserving of death by many in the public, the media and the State itself. Angry. Black. Woman. Archetype.
Certainly someone can choose to focus on Sandra Bland and not comment on Nicki Minaj at all. Certainly someone else can choose to focus on misogynoir in pop culture and allow other womanists, Black feminists, and activists in general to focus on State violence. I personally discuss both. Our emotion is not only conveyed through measurable outputs of labor. I am not just the work that I do. I am a person. This idea that Black people have to shut up about one thing to care about another reduces our humanity into a falsely equalized stance where Black women have to pick and choose between the violence we face daily–partly the responsibility of the media–and the violence that we are at risk for in our own communities and at the hands of the State. All of these impact us. Black women matter as whole people. Fellow Black people–especially ones that assert that Black Lives Matter–would do best to understand this. Black women are whole people with whole lives. And the same reduction into controlling images (i.e. Jezebel, mammy, Sapphire), stereotypes (i.e. welfare queen, welfare mother, emasculating matriarch, mule, gold digger), archetypes (i.e. Angry Black Woman, Strong Black Woman) and labor output that happens to us via non-Black people, especially via Whites, is not something that I want to experience from fellow Black people, especially ones who suggest that they’re activists. Activism that doesn’t center the full humanity of Black women (and Black LGBTQIA people regardless of gender) is activism that is of no interest to me. Black people truly can choose what to discuss and consider the wholeness and humanity of Black women in these discussions.
In 1904, a group of forty New York orphans were sent to live with Catholic families in Arizona. However, the Catholics turned out to be Mexicans and the local Anglos were so outraged at this race boundary transgression that they instigated a mass abduction of the children.
Through this direct action, trans-racial adoption as a white privilege was resolutely reinforced.This privilege continues in the contemporary era. One can only imagine the reactions if white European children were to be sent to Latin American or African countries for international adoption.
In the pre-Civil Rights United States, a handful of states even went so far as to legislate against interracial adoption or even fostering of white children by non-whites, and in the late 1990s a widely publicized controversy erupted, when a black woman in Detroit wanted to adopt a white girl.
- Tobias Hübinette, Between European Colonial Trafficking, American Empire-Building and Nordic Social Engineering: Rethinking International Adoption From a Postcolonial and Feminist Perspective
Whenever somebody unearths an ancient knife or comb or what-have-you, the articles about it invariably talk about the complex geometric symbolism of the decorative patterns and how the animal motifs have deep spiritual significance with respect to the object’s function and so forth. Does anybody else always wonder whether it’s complete nonsense? Like, are we expected to believe that pre-modern humans had no concept of decoration as decoration? That aesthetics are a modern invention? Maybe the reason that thousand-year-old hair-brush has a cat’s face carved into the handle isn’t because its originating culture regarded cats as the tutelary spirits of tidy hair. Maybe it’s just because they thought kitties are pretty.
“If one understands Europe’s modernity—a long process of five centuries—as the unfolding of new possibilities derived from its centrality in world history and the corollary constitution of all other cultures as its periphery, it becomes clear that, even though all cultures are ethnocentric, modern European ethnocentrism is the only one that might pretend to claim universality for itself.
Modernity’s Eurocentrism lies in the confusion between abstract universality and the concrete world hegemony derived from Europe’s position as center.”