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Little Known Black History Fact: Elizabeth Suggs, Early 20th Century Author with Brittle Bones Disorder - Ramp Your Voice!
For Black History Month 2016, I will be featuring disabled Black authors who have written trailblazing and powerful pieces of literature about their plights that resonates with those of us who understand their stories and experiences. An author that came on my radar last month was Elizabeth “Eliza” Gertrude Suggs; Eliza’s life fascinated me on …

@rampyourvoice is doing a great series on disabled Black history this month, introducing us to the stories of remarkable people who should be more well-known.

Repost: @ovarian_psycos #fbf June of 2014! Seems like a lifetime away. #Repost @andixoch: Psyco X vida ! “THRILLED to announce the WORLD PREMIERE of @ovarian_psycos_documentary at SXSW!! This film is a true labor of love, directed and produced by Joanna Raines Sokolowski and Kate Trumbull-LaValle, shot by Michael Raines, edited by Victoria Chalk, with original music by Jimmy LaValle, and featuring the Ovarian Psycos - Documentary, @x_iled, @andixoch , & @boyleheights_native ”

#ovarianpsycos #ovarianpsycosdocumentary #ovariessobigwedontneednofuckingballs #losangeles #woc #poc #bike

Asians in academia Part II

I have also noticed that white academics will readily call into questions the validity of research performed in Asia. Many professors will caution students to be wary of papers published in China for dishonest reporting and data fabrication. Ethics is a global issue and white/non-Asian folk have had their fair share of issues, but people seem disproportionately skeptical of findings published in well established, peer-reviewed international journals when the authors of the article all have visibly Asian names.

There is an extensive process involved in publishing work in respectable journals. While it’s true that occasionally a fraudulent study will pass the numerous filters, it’s very infrequent. I support caution when reading scientific articles because biases exist and it’s important to critically examine methods and sources of error, but this caution should be equally applied to papers by white authors.

#THE CHUNNI PROJECT

Tumblr: @frootiqueen

I’m a Telugu girl who grew up in the white suburbs of the Southwestern U.S. I grew up as the only Telugu girl I knew and was the only Indian girl in my graduating class in high school. I grew up immersed alternatively in Bollywood and Tollywood. But for years, I’ve wondered why Telugu people and our culture have been relegated behind the more prevalent cultures stemming from Delhi and the surrounding areas. Why do I have to feel embarrassed when I don’t understand the aunties who randomly come up to me at temple and start speaking in rapid fire Hindi? Why is it that I can come across like 200 Bollywood fan blogs on tumblr but can’t find more than 6 South Indian (forget the specificity of Tollywood) movie industry fan blogs? Why should I have to learn to speak Hindi when I apparently can’t expect other Indians to learn Telugu, which is ALSO an official language of India? I’m going to teach you some Telugu words now. I eat vankaya koora, not baigan bartha. I call it the cheera, not the sari. I call it the bottu, not a bindi or tikka. We don’t call it the chunni, we call it the voni. My dream is that my people get a little more representation in mainstream Indian culture and aren’t just the butt of jokes and ridicule. #TheVoniProject

María Teresa Vera

Guitarist, singer and composer María Teresa Vera was born in Guanajay, Cuba on February 6, 1895. She made her career performing trova, a type of rural folk music, and secured a place for herself as not only one of Cuba’s most talented female singers, but as one of the best trova singers in general. Her songs “Veinte años” was especially popular and was performed by several other Cuban musicians.

María Teresa Vera died in 1965 at the age of 70.

#THE CHUNNI PROJECT

Tumblr: @masakalii

Being born and raised in the US to immigrant parents has always made me question my identity. In America, I am known as an Indian girl, but when I go to India, I am known as the American girl. So what am I?

When I think back to my childhood, I never noticed these differences. Fortunately, I grew up in a very diverse area so I never got the feeling of being treated differently by other people. I was just a normal kid, but one thing made me question this. It was my name, Manika. At school, no one could pronounce it. They would ask me “Oh, Can I call you Man?” or “Manny?”. I kept saying no, and told them to call them by my actual name, but no one bothered to even try. I kept questioning it, why no one could pronounce my name, everyone at my house could. I slowly became more and more frustrated, till I realized that it would be best to change the pronunciation of my name to fit in with society, “Monica”. This didn’t upset me, I know that I was still Manika no matter how people pronounced my name. Though the pronunciation change made me seem more American, I know that I was never perceived as fully American. Till this day, whenever a professor calls my name I always prepare myself to correct him/her. “Maneka?” “It is Monica!”.  Or when someone asks me my name “Oh it is Monica, M - A -N - I - K - A”. Who knows how many times I have said these words. 

Monica is now a part of me, I am not complete without. I used Monica for my advantage and it made me more confident. After years of using Monica, it is what I have become. I am the same person Manika or “Monica”. 

Now in India, I am only known as Manika. Though I am Indian, I don’t ever feel like I am fully Indian. I act differently, I have an accent while speaking Hindi etc. I am just different, and a lot of people try to make that a point. They will speak mostly English with me, even though I can perfectly understand Hindi. Some people have also tried to embarrass me by making speaking in Hindi in front of a lot people. Like I know I have a huge accent, doesn’t mean it is your source of entertainment. There was also a time at a party, where they were playing music, and little old shy me didn’t want to dance and this girl comes up to me “Oh, do you not understand the music??”. I just found it so odd, like what do you mean I don’t know this music? I don’t live under a rock. I think the perception Indian’s have on foreign Indian’s need to change. It sucks to feel like an outsider in your own homeland, either it be USA or India.

With the recent rise of brown girl movements like this one, and Reclaim the Bindi as well as many others, I have found a new confidence for myself. I am proud of being a brown girl. I am proud of my culture. I will go out in a kurti, and have people stare at me and all I can think is “Good, because I know I look fabulous”. I would have never felt this before and I am really appreciative of all these brown people coming together and showing the world. I know I am not fully American or Indian, but that is what makes me unique. I am my own breed, as long as I self identify with myself I don’t need labels. 

Thank you for this project!

Anyway! This took me like an hour to write and there will probably me tons of mistakes in it (oops). But yea! This picture is of me at the Golden Temple last year in January….

Lots of brown girl love from your local punjabi kuddi~ 

–Manika