This past week, like most people in this country, I found myself revisiting the works of Aretha Franklin. The undisputed Queen of Soul passed after a lengthy illness of pancreatic cancer just this Thursday before last. I was at work when the news alert came across my phone. When I left my office, I got […]Read more "Aretha Franklin, the Hammond B3 and Me"
Two things happened this morning. Facebook reminded me that 12 years ago I joined. It was only three days after my arrival at Fisk University following my displacement because of floodwaters in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina’s landfall. It was a big deal back then to be on Facebook. At the time, it was only […]Read more "Atlanta, 2006"
Earlier this week, HBO issued a press release that show runners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss of “Game of Thrones” were leading the charge for a show entitled “Confederate.” The press release states that it will posit what would have happened post-Battle of Antietam in 1862 where a lost field order fell into the hands […]Read more "Black Fears and White Tears, HBO’s “Confederate”"
We forget that it was Oprah Winfrey who handed black pop culture’s one-dimensional image of black men. It was 2004 and social media as we know it didn’t exist. The black blogosphere was still in its gestational phases, and online dating for black folks was relegated to hook ups on Black Planet websites and […]Read more "On Black Masculinities, Oprah Winfrey, Tyler Perry, “Queen Sugar” and “4:44”"
“My concern is the arrival of new ground that replaces…specific places as primary signifiers of identity.” –Willie Jennings from The Christian Imagination: Theology and the Origins of Race I’m not even sure if the phrase “the black blogosphere” is appropriate anymore to denote that which is the conglomerate of black social media commentary, Black Twitter, news […]Read more "Beyonce, Kendrick and Me"
Dear Yusaf, I don’t know you. We’ve never met. I’m not sure just how much we have in common. The only thing I biographically know about you is that you’re from Philadelphia, you’re 35 with ten kids, and you did a porn movie with other men. And from one black man to another, I just […]Read more "An Open Letter to Yusaf Mack"
This has been an interesting moment in time for blackness. The imperfect harmony of the nightmare that police brutality against black bodies along with the exoneration of whiteness and the beauty of black pride and some semblance of existential unity hearkening to years past. Two hallmarks of this time period have been both Kendrick Lamar […]Read more "If Ta-Nehesi Coates and Kendrick Lamar Had a Conversation…"
“A coupla years ago, my homeboy was beat by police. I wanted to go down with him and protest with him. Honestly, my mom wasn’t on my mind…the police were just on my mind.” Those are words that 16-year-old Michael Singleton offered to WMAR the ABC affiliate of Baltimore in the days following what amounted […]Read more "Who Speaks for Michael Singleton?"
The burden of carrying about blackness in this country is one that seems to compound exponentially as times goes on if you let it. The state of being “in a rage all the time” as James Baldwin said is something that comes with a tax; there is a price to pay. Relationships suffer, isolation sets in. […]Read more "Rekia Boyd and the Myth of Modern-Day Black Male Exceptionalism"
Below is an excerpt from the essay Michael Eric Dyson that was recently published entitled “The Ghost of Cornel West” in the magazine The New Republic: This is no biased preference for the written word over the spoken; I am far from a champion of a Eurocentric paradigm of literacy. This is about scholar versus […]Read more "If You’re Reading This It’s Not Too Late to Start Writing: Black Public Intellectuals in a Ghost West Era"