New History Finally Recognizes Afro-Creole Spiritualists

Posted in Articles, History, Interviews, Louisiana, Media Archive, Religion, United States on 2022-05-13 01:23Z by Steven

New History Finally Recognizes Afro-Creole Spiritualists

Religion Dispatches
2016-09-20

Paul Harvey, Distinguished Professor of History
University of Colorado

“Ladder of Progress,” a drawing added to the archive of the Cercle Harmonique by René Grandjean, the circle’s first archivist.

Emily Clark’s new work, A Luminous Brotherhood, is an extensive study of a subject that has weirdly been neglected in scholarship: the career of the Afro-Creole Spiritualist Cercle Harmonique from 1858 to 1877. Religious studies scholar Clark has thoroughly mined the records of the Cercle, kept at the University of New Orleans, and produced one of the most important recent works I have seen in race and religion in American history.

By focusing on Afro-Creole Spiritualism in New Orleans, we get an extended, as well as intimate, look at how one very particular group, mostly men and free people of color, envisioned their ideal society through the voices of spirit mediums.

In doing so, they drew from French thinkers and historical experiences (including everyone from Rousseau, Robespierre, and Lamennais to the French and Haitian Revolutions), and applied those to the construction of what they referred to as “the Idea”—a republican society that would achieve liberty, equality and fraternity even in an American society burdened by slavery and racism since its birth.

I had a conversation with Clark, reflecting both on the book as well as on broader questions of race, religion and politics…

Read the entire interview here.

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A New Book for Those Who Cling to a “Post-Racial” Christianity

Posted in Articles, Interviews, Media Archive, Religion, United States on 2022-05-12 20:10Z by Steven

A New Book for Those Who Cling to a “Post-Racial” Christianity

Religion Dispatches
2017-02-17

In The Death of Race, Brian Bantum explores the theological underpinnings of cultural understandings of race and gender.

What inspired you to write The Death of Race?

Truthfully, this wasn’t the book I had wanted to write right now. There is a tendency for theologians who write about race to become penned in. My first book, Redeeming Mulatto: A Theology of Race and Christian Hybridity, is certainly a book about race. But even more, it is a Christology. For my second book, I wanted to write something that would be read apart from the primary lens of race. But then Ferguson happened, then Baltimore, and every successive summer seemed to press the reality of race and the church. There are so many good books that have come from folks in or associated with the Black Lives Matter movement that I wasn’t sure what I could add to the conversation.

But as I taught and read and listened, I began to see how various Christian responses to police brutality—and racism and sexism more broadly—were grounded in various theological stories that shaped American Christians and how they saw the world. At the same time, I was thinking about my three sons, who were 17, 15, and 11 when I started writing. We had been talking about everything that was happening in the world, and I wondered how I could help them understand the Christian story in the midst of this. Why was the world like this, and why does Jesus matter?..

Read the entire interview here.

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Robin Thede Teases ‘Epic’ Return of ‘A Black Lady Sketch Show’ on Variety’s ‘Through Our Lens’

Posted in Arts, Interviews, Media Archive, United States, Videos, Women on 2022-04-21 14:23Z by Steven

Robin Thede Teases ‘Epic’ Return of ‘A Black Lady Sketch Show’ on Variety’s ‘Through Our Lens’

Variety
2022-04-02

Robin Thede, writer, comedian and creator of ‘A Black Lady Sketch Show’, joins Variety’s Angelique Jackson on ‘Through Our Lens’ to discuss how her perspective as a Black woman has shaped her comedy career and outlook as a creator and showrunner.

Watch the interview here. Read the article here.

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Episode 205: Understanding our Multiple Identities

Posted in Audio, Identity Development/Psychology, Interviews, Media Archive, United States on 2022-04-15 00:43Z by Steven

Episode 205: Understanding our Multiple Identities

Shifting Our Schools
2022-04-11

Jeff Utecht, Host

Sarah Gaither, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience
Duke University, Durham, North Carolina

Dr. Gaither is a social & developmental psychologist studying social identities. She runs the Duke University Identity and Diversity Lab.

Listen to the episode (00:18:53) here.

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For Colin Kaepernick, Writing Is Another Form of Activism

Posted in Articles, Autobiography, Interviews, Media Archive, Social Justice, United States on 2022-04-05 02:56Z by Steven

For Colin Kaepernick, Writing Is Another Form of Activism

Publishers Weekly
2022-03-29

Nathalie op de Beeck, Associate Professor of English
Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, Washington

Colin Kaepernick, at 34, presides over a multimedia platform for Black and brown people’s empowerment. In 2016, inspired by civil rights heroes, the then-San Francisco 49ers quarterback rocked the NFL by taking a knee during the national anthem to protest police brutality, sparking protests and backlash. That fall, he and his partner Nessa (known by her first name only) established Know Your Rights Camp, a youth-focused organization with principles that echo the Black Panthers’ Ten-Point Program for communities, along with a downloadable set of educational resources, Colin in Black & White: The Kaepernick Curriculum. He went on to found Kaepernick Publishing, for which he edited a collection of essays by social justice leaders, Abolition for the People: The Movement for a Future Without Policing or Prisons.

Kaepernick Publishing and Scholastic have teamed up to publish Kaepernick’s debut picture book (as part of a multibook deal), the autobiographical I Color Myself Different, with illustrations by Eric Wilkerson, an artist known for his high-energy fantasy illustrations. Wilkerson’s paintings grace the covers of Nic Stone’s Shuri books and Kwame Mbalia’s Tristan Strong series, and Kaepernick was familiar with his work; the author and illustrator spoke back and forth to fine-tune the images of a young Colin in I Color Myself Different. Kaepernick corresponded with PW about writing as a form of activism, recognizing the many elements that make up our identities, and finding strength in the history of social justice movements…

Read the entire interview here.

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Trailblazer with Amandla Stenberg

Posted in Articles, Arts, Interviews, Media Archive, Social Justice on 2022-04-05 01:27Z by Steven

Trailblazer with Amandla Stenberg

Net-a-Porter
2021-02-08

Micha Frazer-Carroll

Photography: Miranda Barnes / Styling: Karla Welch

Ever since her breakout role in The Hunger Games, Amandla Stenberg’s career has gone from strength to strength. Here, the actor talks to Micha Frazer-Carroll about her involvement in the Black Lives Matter movement, how the pandemic has made her re-evaluate her life and why she’s keenly exploring other creative avenues

Speaking to Amandla Stenberg feels strikingly like hanging out with a close friend, as well as interviewing a compelling voice from Hollywood’s twentysomething cohort. As we connect over Zoom, the conversational ground quickly spans from grumbling about media depictions of Gen Z to lamenting the elitist hierarchies that have emerged at queer Zoom parties. She also laughs a lot.

The laughter subsides and Stenberg reflects on the turbulent times that 2020 brought. She’s been Airbnb-ing and short-term renting for two years now – between New York, LA, Paris and Copenhagen – and has felt constantly unsettled since the pandemic hit. “I think sometimes I forget the lens through which I’m looking at things,” she says. “I can kind of get stressed out, wondering why I have so much anxiety, or why I’m in a constant state of paranoia and fear – and then I remember the circumstances.”

There are things to be grateful for, too, of course – she stresses that she doesn’t want to sound all “the pandemmy’s been so hard”, particularly since the actor, whose father is Danish, spent three months of the past year in the rolling hills of rural Denmark. “The thing I’m grateful for is definitely the opportunity to move more slowly – like actually thinking about my habits, the way I move through each day and what my priorities are.”…

Read the entire article here.

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Gregory Howard Williams

Posted in Audio, Autobiography, Interviews, Media Archive, Passing, United States, Virginia on 2022-04-05 00:50Z by Steven

Writer Gregory Howard Williams’ “Life on the Color Line”

Fresh Air with Terry Gross
WHYY FM, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
1995-02-21

Terry Gross, Host

Williams spent the first ten years of his life believing he was white in segregated Virginia, and that his dark-skinned father was Italian. When his parents’ marriage ended, his father took him and his brother to Muncie, Indiana, where the boys learned that they were half black. Williams’ new memoir “Life on the Color Line” is about the struggle and repression he faced growing up between the races. Publisher’s Weekly calls it “(an) affecting and absorbing story.”

Listen to the interview (00:23:10) here. Download the interview here.

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Nitasha Tamar Sharma: Hawai’i Is My Haven: Race and Indigeneity in the Black Pacific

Posted in Anthropology, Articles, Audio, Book/Video Reviews, History, Interviews, Media Archive, Oceania, Social Science, United States on 2022-04-01 16:51Z by Steven

Nitasha Tamar Sharma: Hawai’i Is My Haven: Race and Indigeneity in the Black Pacific

New Books Network
2022-03-30

Hawai’i Is My Haven: Race and Indigeneity in the Black Pacific (Duke UP, 2021) maps the context and contours of Black life in the Hawaiian Islands. This ethnography emerges from a decade of fieldwork with both Hawaiʻi-raised Black locals and Black transplants who moved to the Islands from North America, Africa, and the Caribbean. Nitasha Tamar Sharma highlights the paradox of Hawaiʻi as a multiracial paradise and site of unacknowledged anti-Black racism. While Black culture is ubiquitous here, African-descended people seem invisible. In this formerly sovereign nation structured neither by the US Black/White binary nor the one-drop rule, non-White multiracials, including Black Hawaiians and Black Koreans, illustrate the coarticulation and limits of race and the native/settler divide. Despite erasure and racism, nonmilitary Black residents consider Hawaiʻi their haven, describing it as a place to “breathe” that offers the possibility of becoming local. Sharma’s analysis of race, indigeneity, and Asian settler colonialism shifts North American debates in Black and Native studies to the Black Pacific. Hawaiʻi Is My Haven illustrates what the Pacific offers members of the African diaspora and how they in turn illuminate race and racism in “paradise.”

Listen to the interview (01:48:48) here.

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Aline Motta and the personal diving into collective memory

Posted in Articles, Arts, Brazil, Caribbean/Latin America, History, Interviews, Media Archive on 2022-03-29 20:28Z by Steven

Aline Motta and the personal diving into collective memory

ARTE!Brasileiros
2020-03-18

Marcos Grinspum Ferraz

“Pontes sobre Abismos #17”, Aline Motta, Foto: Cortesia da artista

The multimedia artist, one of the winners of the 7th Marcantonio Vilaça Award, departs from a thorough research on his family history to address major topics such as slavery, African heritage and a patriarchal structure that remains in Brazil today

The journey of artist Aline Motta looking for her roots and the vestiges of her ancestors is undoubtedly a personal endeavour. The result, however, concerns the collective memory of thousands of Brazilian families built (or destroyed) in the violent process of the country’s formation, based on slavery and patriarchal structure.

“It took a while for me to acquire some maturity and psychic centering to deal with issues so deep and difficult that concern my own history and family,” she says in an interview with ARTE!Brasileiros. This maturation time included not only some early artwork that dealt with other topics, carried out especially from the beginning of this decade, but also a vast trajectory as a continuist in movies, which commenced in 2001.

It was from 2016, when she had the project Pontes sobre Abismos (Bridges over Abysses) selected by Itaú Cultural’s Rumos program, that Motta, now 45, began to devote herself full-time to authorial work, with a multimedia production that did not leave aside cinema, but also unfolded in installations, photographs, texts, publications and performances…

Read the entire interview here.

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A brush with… Ellen Gallagher

Posted in Articles, Arts, Audio, Biography, History, Interviews, Media Archive, Slavery, United States on 2022-03-29 20:00Z by Steven

A brush with… Ellen Gallagher

The Week in Art
2021-06-30

Ellen Gallagher in her Rotterdam studio Photo: Philippe Vogelenzang Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth

An in-depth conversation on the artist’s big influences, from Keith Haring to Moby Dick

In this episode of A brush with…, Ben Luke talks to the American artist Ellen Gallagher about her life and work by exploring her greatest cultural influences. Born in Providence, Rhode Island in 1965, Gallagher studied at Oberlin College in Ohio, the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine. She now lives in Rotterdam in the Netherlands. Much of Gallagher’s parents’ ancestry—in particular her Black father who is from the Cape Verde archipelago off the west coast of Africa—defines the territory of her practice, which relates to the culture and language of the Black diaspora.

Though primarily working in painting and drawing, Gallagher has also worked in sculpture, film and animation. Her early style appears Minimalist and spare from a distance but, up close, one observes intricate drawings of eyes, lips and wigs, which Gallagher has described as “the disembodied ephemera of minstrelsy”—the racist blackface entertainment common in the US from the C19th onwards. In the early 2000s, she used cut-out advertisements from Black culture magazines and transformed them with plasticine, making sculptural reliefs that were often imprinted with witty or incisive symbols and imagery. Many of her paintings refer to the sea and allude to the Afrofuturist myth of Drexciya: a Black Atlantis at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean, supposedly populated with the children of the mothers of enslaved African women who were thrown—or threw themselves—overboard during their forced journey across the Middle Passage

Read and/or listen to the interview here.

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