Kobe Bryant and Mythologizing Black Greatness

Kobe Bryant and Mythologizing Black Greatness

I can not remember how old he was turning. But it was summer in NYC, and somehow, in a pre-google, pre-instagram world, I found a graffiti artist to spray paint Kobe Bryant’s image into a shirt. The gift would be a keepsake item for my younger brother who admired Bryant for his work ethic more [...]

The Knock-Off

The Knock-Off

The contemporary climate yields a disturbing trend. The trend that I speak of references non-black people of color as acquiring  accolades and visibility at the expense of their black counterparts. The trend betrays a societal preference for what I call the knock-off. American culture, specifically, the 2019 Grammy Awards and the 2020 Super Bowl, displays [...]

Blue Ivy Ain’t Got the Blues: Debunking the “Sad Black Girl” Narrative

Blue Ivy Ain’t Got the Blues: Debunking the “Sad Black Girl” Narrative

Blue Ivy, the eldest daughter of superstar couple Beyonce and Jay-Z, made headlines this week, not for her eighth birthday, but for her appearance. This, of course, is not the first time that Blue Ivy has made headlines for her looks. Her likeness to father Jay-Z, who’s Afrocentric features remain subject to countless jokes, informs [...]

Lizzo and Absolving the Mammy Image

Lizzo and Absolving the Mammy Image

There is a new controlling image in town. This image strolled alongside the pseudo “change” which employs the subjugated to propagate oppressive ideologies. But rather than call this slavery, the contemporary climate calls this diversity or progress.   This new controlling image combines the traditional mammy and jezebel images and displaces hypersexual behavior, clothing, and [...]

Queen and Slim, A Black Female Perspective

Queen and Slim, A Black Female Perspective

Queen and Slim begins with a dearth blacks in America have become accustomed to—the dearth, or violent obscurity, in representation. British actors as African-Americans proves even more jarring in a film that repeatedly references the characters as “African Americans.” Neither lead fits this description, so the label becomes a mask, a costume that the lead [...]

My Story Without Me: Harriet, A Black Female Perspective

My Story Without Me: Harriet, A Black Female Perspective

I feel inclined to inform anyone who takes the time to read this post the process of its conception. I originally planned to entitle this article “Why I Won’t See the New Harriet Movie," but I feared to execute a superficial discourse on a topic so prevalent to the black collective. Seeing the film actualized [...]

Cyntoia Brown’s Release & Contemplating a “Free” yet Forgetful Culture

Cyntoia Brown’s Release & Contemplating a “Free” yet Forgetful Culture

This week, countless media outlets celebrated what they called Cyntoia Brown’s freedom. The term “free” was probably always privy to a violent banality, but it’s use seems particularly violent with regards to Brown’s case.  Cyntoia Brown was just a teenager when she was sentenced to life in prison. A pigtailed Brown made the news, but [...]

Assaulting the Archive: The Cultural Damage of The Black Biopic and “Historical” Film

Assaulting the Archive: The Cultural Damage of The Black Biopic and “Historical” Film

The eighties were a turbulent period. The crack era personified a violent wrath that intentionally tore apart black families. The multi-talented Jackie Wilson, a trailblazer in black entertainment, lay robbed, abused, and neglected in a nursing home. Tawana Brawley, a fifteen-year-old black teen from Upstate New York, was raped and systemically lynched, and five young [...]