A few years ago, I taught a Year 2 class in East London. I had built up a good bank of multicultural picture-books and resources and shared these with the class whenever seemed appropriate. When it came time for the class to write their own stories, I suggested that they used the name of someone in their family for their protagonist. I wanted them to draw on their own backgrounds, but was worried about ‘making an issue of race’. When it came to sharing their stories, I noticed only one boy had acted upon my suggestion, naming his main character after his uncle. He had recently arrived from Nigeria and was eager to read his story to the class. However when he read out the protagonists name he was interrupted by another boy, who was born in Britain and identified as Congolese.

“You can’t do that! Stories have to be about White people.”

I’m confident the boy who announced this was being sincere and indeed, in the ensuing class discussion there was a fair bit of uncertainty about who could and couldn’t be in stories. I was surprised and confused by this. Why did they always write stories about children from very different backgrounds to themselves? And why were these characters always White? After all, I had shared a number of stories about children of colour with the class.

I just hadn’t realised what I was up against.

Shonda Buchanan: Who is Afraid of Black Indians?

Shonda Buchanan of Choctaw, Coharie, Cherokee & African Heritage is an Award-winning Poet and Fiction Writer.

Shonda was born and raised in Kalamazoo, Michigan where she spent much of her adolescence curled up in libraries, bathtubs, and on her front porch, reading. Her book “Who’s Afraid of Black Indians?” is a difficult yet beautiful collection of poetry that peeks into one American family’s cultural window.

“Trust the first drum, your heart, for all your answers. The ancestors will follow…” ~Shonda Buchanan

Wanting to forget the past, this chapbook of poetry explores the journey Shonda’s ancestors took from North Carolina to Tennessee, to Indiana and finally Michigan, and the flight and fight to escape racial persecution and racial classification.

Yet it is also a book about the recovery of an identity–the intersection of Blacks and Native American Indians in this country. Shonda and her family, like so many other “bi-racial” Native American Indians, suffered from not knowing their full roots, and the ills of assimilation, all the while and enduring society’s ever-evolving definition of them. This book will hopefully help other Black American Indians, as well as bi-racial and tri-racial peoples, research, reclaim and celebrate their multifaceted heritage.

Buy her book for kindle 

Full article at


is a word I learned from my dad when I was young and had just finished reading Madeleine L'Engle's A Wrinkle In Time.

I told him I had been absolutely transported by the story and now felt abandoned by it, that it seemed wholly unfair. The feeling I could most closely compare it to was the nauseating stillness left when the engine of a car shuts off, which I’m not certain is entirely relatable.

Because I was a difficult child I’d been ferried often to and from offices of people who claimed some knowledge of how to deal with children like me.

Keep reading

One reason it’s easy to dismiss black women with mental illness like this is that the media rarely, if ever, tells our stories. When the topic of mental illness is brought up in television shows or the media generally, the character with mental illness is almost always young, white, and wealthy. I have yet to see a black woman written into a plot that deals with mental illness. Movies like Silver Linings Playbook, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, made-for-TV movies, and the like portray mental illness as something white people go through, and rarely anyone else.
—  Lakesha Lafayett on the erasure of black women within mental health narratives in her fantastic essay Dark Times Under the Radar: Black Women and Mental Illness over at Adios Barbie, also be sure to check out her brilliant tumblr page intersectionalvoices


Monsters are variously characterized by accident, indetermination, formlessness; by material incompleteness, categorical ambiguity, ontological instability. One may create monsters through hybridization, hypertrophy, or hopotrophy; through lack, excess, or multiplication; through the substitution of elements, the confusion of species, or the conflation of genders and genres.


What do you think of this documentary? Share your thoughts about “American Red and Black: Stories of Afro-Native Identity” by Alicia Woods, 2006 (FULL DOCUMENTARY). This intimate film follows six Afro-Native Americans from around the U.S., as they reflect upon the personal and complex issues of Native and African heritage, ethnic identity, and racism within communities of color.

About @Alicia Woods
Born and raised in Buffalo, NY, Alicia experienced a culturally and ethnically diverse upbringing. A descendant of immigrants from Poland and Germany from her mother and of African American and American Indian heritage from her father, her multicultural experiences fueled her interest in understanding the dynamics of race in America. She studied the history of people of color in colonial America at the University of New Mexico and continued her formal education at the University of Washington where she earned a Master of Communication from the Native Voices film program.

Her award winning thesis film, “American Red and Black: Stories of Afro Native Identity,” investigates mixed heritage issues and has been shown at a variety of film festivals and universities in the US and Canada. Alicia works for the Muckleshoot Tribal College as a writing specialist and instructor. She strives to integrate her passions for art production and empowering educational communities of color. Alicia is also on the board of MAVIN, a nonprofit dedicated to building healthier communities by providing educational resources about mixed heritage experiences.

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Screenings, Awards, and Publications

IMAGeNation 8th annual film and Video Festival,
Awarded “Outstanding Documentary”

Bellevue Community College’s fourth annual American Indian Film Festival, 2006

African American Women in Cinema Film Festival, NYC, 2006

7th Annual CIC American Indian Studies Graduate Student Conference Indiana University, Bloomington

Tulalip Film Festival, 2006

Awarded “Best Original Score”

13th Annual Women of Color Film and Arts Fest at University of California, Santa Cruz

American Indian Film Institute’s 31st Annual American Indian Film Festival, San Francisco

Eastern Cherokee, Southern Iroquois and United Tribes of South Carolina 9th Annual Native American Film Festival

“The First and the Forced” Indigenous and African American Intersections Conference. University of Kansas, Lawrence

Central District Forum for Arts and Ideas American Heritage Series “Bloodtimes: Exploring the Black Native American Connection”

2006 Winnipeg Aboriginal Film and Video Festival

Alicia Woods:

This post is pulled from

monsterinthegirlmask asked:

It's not art related, but I was wondering your opinion of this. I was at a zoo recently and I couldn't help but notice that nearly every non-western animal was "discovered" by a white male explorer. Uhm, so, no one ever saw any of these animals until white people did? Even though in the case of a few of them Chinese people domesticated them? Good thing white people showed up to discover animals so POC could finally be told that zebras and kangaroos are in fact not plants or hallucinations.

First of all, I laughed a bitter laugh at the last line, and second of all, you’ve underestimated my ability to make everything about art history.

Almost every “discovery” narrative you come across isn’t even internally consistent. I mean, have a gander at what is oft referred to as The Beowulf Manuscript, dating from c. 1075 in England. It also contains a manuscript called “Marvels of the East”, which is about people, landmarks, plants, and animals of the world. It’s also illuminated:

See? People, camels, some other stuff. Here’s a lizard:

Anyhow, what I’m getting at here is that the whole “discovery” narrative is silly, because it hinges on the idea of a totally isolated, racially and culturally
“pure” Europe that supposedly existed in “the past”, as in “before discovery!11!!!”, and that’s just not true.

I know a lot of joke articles make their way around about the laughable inaccuracy of Medieval European illuminations of “Exotic Animals”, but it has more to do with the art style and cultural factors than “ha ha this person never even saw an animal before”.

I mean, here’s a Medieval (c. 1250s) English Illumination of some people riding an elephant:

And here’s a Japanese painting from c. 1550s of some Europeans riding an elephant:

Basically the point I’m making is, 1. the “Discovery” narrative doesn’t work because the people who lived in the same places as these supposedly “exotic” animals obviously already knew what they were, and 2. the “Discovery” narrative doesn’t work because centuries ago, Europeans often knew what those animals were, too.

Thoughts on: Harry’s Twitter

UO: I think he is the one writing these staid, boring tweets, 

Here’s my thought process:

- They are VERY staged - almost as if (and bear with me) Harry is imitating a social media manager imitating Harry.

- I don’t think a social media manager (SMM) hired to look after Harry Styles TM’s account, a multibillion dollar account, would be so new to the game as to be so obvious. Maybe I’m giving them too much credit, but I don’t think I am. 

- The other boys, including Louis, have had an increased presence on twitter lately. Some have theorised that Harry is being punished/restricted, I’m not sure that’s it.  

- There is no way 1DHQ isn’t aware of this fandom’s skepticism towards the boys’ twitter accounts. Especially after that fuck up a few months ago with Niall’s twitter and promo. 

- I believe the increase in the boys’ access to twitter (still with SMM responsible for approval/publishing) is an attempt to counter this skepticism. 

- Harry’s twitter has been publishing regularly, but the language of all tweets tends to be stilted, formal, and repetitive. It has also been regular, but not really responsive. 

- Harry has followed people on his twitter.

My conclusion: 

Harry is the one tweeting. He has access. He prefers to communicate in person, at the concerts, where we hear him speak. If he didn’t use this access, SMM would tweet for him. Harry tweets the bare minimum amount to minimise the need for SMM to step in and tweet for him. Harry is skilled with language (he’s a songwriter, ffs). Harry uses repetitive language in his tweets as either a way of mocking or exposing the ‘fakeness’ of his twitter persona, or to draw attention to the fact that his twitter seems staged. 

This is where I’m at currently, and a lot of this is just connecting disparate ideas, thoughts and observations I’ve been having/making about Harry’s public persona. Will update as things develop. 

Sheilah Dasher, Mixed Afro-Navajo Woman Warrior

Sheilah Naajiibah Dasher is a young woman warrior with strength and fearlessness in her name. She is an experienced conference speaker, workshop facilitator and American Indian advocate. Naajiibah is a Navajo female warrior name, named for her great grandmother a herbalist medicine woman. Dasher wears her Native American Indian heritage proudly. Dasher is of mixed heritage from her Native American Indian mother and Black-American father. She is an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation, but also honors her Zuni and Apache ancestral heritage.

“I was given a warrior name and born into a medicine family but my medicine is not through chants or all night prayers but is through the work I do for my people in my community.” ~Sheilah Dasher

Sheilah Dasher spent her formative years living on the Navajo Reservation in Arizona, immersed in the Diné culture and traditions. Her clans are, Zuni Red Streak Clan, born for the Black People, maternal grandfather the Edge Water clan, paternal grandfather the Black People. (Naaneesht’ezhi tachii’nii, yinshi Naakaii le Zhinii’ dine’e ba’shishchiin, Tabaaha dashicheii aadoo’, Naakaii le Zhinii’ dine’e dashinali’).

Sheilah has participated in a number of national and regional coalitions including the 2010 Answer Coalition (Washington, DC), the 2010 National Indian Education Association, the 2008 San Diego American Indian Youth Health Conference and the 2008 United National Indian Tribal Youth Conference. She has been an activist for Native rights, as well as gender and domestic violence issues. She hopes to obtain her Masters in Social Work to help her communities and Veterans.

She currently resides on Kumeyaay Indian land in San Diego CA. She has been a very active member of her urban Indian community for several years. Dasher serves as the Program Coordinator and Instruction Facilitator for the San Diego American Indian Health Center’s Tribal Personal Responsibility Education Program (Tribal PREP) project designed to reduce the number of teen and unplanned pregnancies among Native youth in San Diego.

Full article at

admiralofthehip replied to your post: “How do paintings of legendary figures from the past in distant lands prove anything about Bohemia’s demographics? That’s like saying Jesus was in Milan in the 15th century (or in any other place anywhere) because everybody was painting pictures of him.”:

Apparently, white people in medieval art is evidence that they were there, but POC in art isn’t good enough?

I’ve often thought about changing the title of this blog to “Let’s pretend you have a point”.

Because it’s never really been about facts, or logic. As much as people have “complimented” (*eyeroll*) this blog on using both those things, the situations I’m addressing via this blog aren’t truly based on either of those things.

The “burden of proof” such as it is, will always remain solely on those who are historically disenfranchised. Notice the lack of calls for “proof” that people in Medieval Europe were all white.

Our vision of the past has been and continues to be written by the present. In the post linked above, I speak about the ubiquitously disappointing limits of our imaginations, which have been truncated by the endless amounts of money and resources thrown at producing the same stories, over and over again.

Those who control our present control our view of the past. I live in a nation where it is perfectly legal to intentionally falsify “The News”, while simultaneously presenting yourself as a reputable arbiter of the truth. If these are our standards for journalism, then even marginally creative endeavors owe absolutely nothing to reality or truth.

It just goes to show that aligning with popular misconceptions and cultural narratives never requires proof. It’s only those who disagree, and those who are harmed by these narratives, who must prove the same thing over and over again, who are perceived as requiring approval, permission, or the showing of deference to the systems that created the misconceptions in the first place.

It’s a glaring and painfully obvious double standard, but hey…let’s pretend they have a point.

It’s still wrong.

anonymous asked:

Id just like to hear someone's response to a notion that kept popping into my head. I've been pretty silent on the NT/OT dynamics in regards to babygate for a reason. It might be an uo opinion but since the beginning Ive felt like babygate was handled by NT. & I think it's been intentionally sloppy, which would make it easier to deny. Babygate developments coincide directly with Jeff's appearances, & the whole thing raised Loui's public persona. I think this is more orchestrated than they let on

Ok so here’s the thing. I have ALWAYS thought (and I’ve said this in several eps of the podcast) that NT was onboard with the beginning of babygate. For a long time I thought it was new team’s idea, even, but recent events have indicated that was definitely not the case. I think babygate was supposed to look very different. I think it was meant to be over after the initial 3 weeks (we KNOW there was denial language issued and held off), or NT had planned to spin it so it would be (Louis holding Tamara’s hand at glasto tells me OT might have always wanted it to be a long term closeting thing), with the benefits going to the boys. And in the US, until GMA, this was the case. He got big name recog spikes, lots of promo for 1D, lots of linking back to Larry, and the holes in the story were left obvious and gaping because NT undermined every attempt to make BG a cohesive story. 

I think they did it a little TOO well, tbh, and OT, who’d always wanted longer, managed to convince the record label execs at Sony that it was worth it to drag it out. That’s when Louis (and Harry, because they’re a team) stopped playing ball. 

Since that point, he has actively worked against the stunt. I don’t think he would be so uninvolved in the stunt if it was NT and if it was part of a bigger plan. I also think the fact that the majority of BG is coming from the UK (Sony/SYCO) rather than the US (Sony/Columbia) is very indicative of which part of 1DHQ it’s coming from. Louis (and Harry) are smart, switched on, and know how to play the game. If this was NT we would see them playing it. They’re not. I think a fuckton of shit is going down behind the scenes right now (you can hear rumblings of it all throughout the fandom), which is the reason we’ve seen Jeff show up every time BG nonsense goes down - if he’s NT, and taking over from modest, he would be the one negotiating on L & H’s behalf every time OT want BG to develop. 

Of course, this is just my own theory based on the information I have right now. As I said before, it’s changed a lot in the last 5 months (like the date of conception, Briana technically should be ready to pop if intitial dates are to be believed, not in Feb). But I’m feeling pretty steady about this one right now. 

4 shades of narratives”: a book by One Direction’s management.

1) Bad narratives (beards, gay rumours ruined a friendship..): for the ones who believe in everything they’re told

2) Gryles and Harry+men narratives: for the ones who can see that someone might be not exactly straight, but choose to not see Harry and Louis’ relationship

3) Blind Gossip and "insiders” narratives about them being not together anymore or not exclusive: for Larry shippers who need non-stop confirmations and can be easily trolled.

4) “Try again”: Larry supporters with real eyes that realize real lies


“Black Indians: An American Story” (as seen on ABC) brings to light a forgotten part of Americans past – the cultural and racial fusion of Native and African Americans. Narrated by James Earl Jones, “Black Indians: An American Story” explores what brought the two groups together, what drove them apart and the challenges they face today.

Distinguished Awards:

  • Award of Distinction, Indian Summer Festival 2005
  • Cine Golden Eagle 2002
  • Crystal Award of Excellence, Communicator Awards 2002
  • Best Documentary, Native American Music Awards 2002
  • Aurora Gold Award 2001

A society that wants to build the future must know its past, its real past, as it was.” But what if that past had been lost, forgotten, hidden, or denied?

“Black Indians: An American Story,” explores the issue of racial identity among Native and African Americans. This in-depth documentary examines the coalescence of these two groups in American history. Discounted, and often ignored by mainstream America, these minority peoples have often shared a common past. However, with their heritage ignored and their contributions denied they are all but invisible at the dawn of the new millennium.

It was a black and white world in the early days of the Republic and little or no thought was given to people of mixed race, especially if they looked “black.” “We were told ‘if you could pass for white, that’s who you’d be; if not, it was usually better to be identified as black than Indian,’” recalls Executive Producer Steven Heape. “It was this kind of thinking that later led to ‘pencil genocide’–changing one’s race on a birth certificate to fit the skin color of the child.”

As seen on ABC

from this site 


For real though, how did more than 850 loops, jumps, and dunks into time travel be printed to celluloid without anyone thinking to have a Person of Color as the central character? What could be so disastrous? What awesome and powerful thing could possibly happen that got filmmakers so shook? What event in human history could a person prevent with time travel that would unravel civilization as we know it MORE than Spock messing with some damn whales? What could have happened from 1492 to 1867 on the Western Hemisphere that would change the landscape and legacy of global interconnectedness and financial interdependence through the process of changing people into property? Oh yeah. Slavery.

I would definitely go back and change that shit! Wouldn’t you?

So wait, everybody gets the green light to merc out Adolf, and no one can even imagine halting the Transatlantic Slave Trade? How does that happen? Who’s running Hollywood anyway?

Read more by @true-villainy   here.

Ok darlings, I just want you to know that it’s ok to be upset and angry and anxious. It’s ok. This fucking sucks. It’s ok to acknowledge that. It’s ok to not be able to put all your faith in the bears and what you know. It’s ok. 

I’m not going to point to the bears because those of us who are trusting the bears are, from what I’ve seen, mostly ok. It’s nice to be able to point to something that’s excessively Larry and say, they told me to stay calm, so I’m ok. It’s ok to be anxious despite that. 

Here’s the thing. We didn’t have the bears (as we know them - back then they were still a fringe thing) when babygate broke, but we could see very quickly that things just didn’t add up. And things still don’t add up. Even without reference to the bears, without reading in to Harry’s tweet, taking things completely on face value, things still don’t add up. I’ve spent the night thinking of the myriad of mental leaps required for this to make sense, and the simple fact is that there are too many. This doesn’t make rational sense. Take Larry out of the equation and it still doesn’t make much sense. 

I get it fam. I get the stress. I wanted to hurl when I saw the tweets, despite my firm belief that it was bullshit. I get the reluctance to put your faith in things like the bears because shit just got hard - it’s way easier to have faith when shit is easy, that’s something that has been acknowledged for Millennia. So if you’re finding it hard to do so, that’s ok. But I encourage you to (try and) do a rational assessment of what we know. And what we know doesn’t add up. 

Look after yourselves darlings, do what you need to to neutralise your anxiety. But this fandom is full of some of the most intelligent, rational and loving people I have ever met in my life, and if you trust nothing else, trust in that