Posts tagged women of color.

I’d go so far as to specify women of color and specifically queer and/or trans women of color… but word on the street is that I’m divisive & reverse racist.

(via nezua)





Can people stop making fun of Girls HBO for being all-white and just state that they’re uncomfortable with a female-dominant show already

Wait what?

Most of the (completely legitimate!, I might add) criticism I’ve heard of Girls being all-white has come from women of color- women of color who want POC to actually be represented AT ALL on this show.

So I’m a little confused.

Do you think that having WOC on the show would take away from the female-dominant nature of the show?

It seems like you’re conflating “white women” with “normal women”. By implying that a female dominant show would no longer be female dominant if it included people of color, you’re saying that your definition of female does not include people of color.

Which is exactly the problem.

uhhh… i know nothing about this show except that only women of color have been making a complaint. but yet again, Black women ain’t women huh? so they are just uncomfortable with the universal stand in for all women, white women, cause they aren’t really women. yea. i see you.

I have a brain teaser for you:


I just found this while looking for something else but it’s still funny.

I am learning how to be mean

because when black girls stand up for ourselves, we’re automatically being mean/aggressive/bullies/bitches. OH WELL. Let me get into that, then, if that’s what it’s called.

I mean, I told a white dude that a black man’s police record isn’t his business and isn’t indication of unethical behavior (nevermind who decided on what those ethics are). And that I gave a really honest try at working with a group of white people whose behavior and political framework is continuously racist, albeit that subtle progressive kind, but at some point working with them was insulting to myself and fruitless. And all of this boils down to me being closed-minded and uppity and angry. White people wouldn’t be expected to organize with someone who kept insulting them personally, but black people are supposed to just suck it up and consider themselves lucky that white people will work with us.

I told another white dude that my caring about him wasn’t going to overpower my caring about black kids, and therefore when something fucked up happened to him I could see both sides. And if I had to pick sides, I totally understood where those black kids were coming from and felt that same resentment toward white outsiders who act scared of them/us. I’m willing to understand the feelings behind an action that I don’t support. So I wouldn’t necessarily punch a gentrifyer in the face—but I might; I’d just make sure to do my research better—but I absolutely would feel that anger. I just do empathy in a way that’s way too complicated.

At work, I’m scary because I care too much about the kids I work with, who are almost all kids of color. Because I can easily build relationships with students that their teachers will never have. Because their students tell me things off the cuff that they’d never tell their teachers, that I’ll bring up on the students’ behalf so they don’t have to deal with any repercussion, and because they know those students have a deeper understanding of how our school and our city and our society work than those teachers will ever have because it didn’t come out of a book and it didn’t come out of living in the suburbs and commuting into the city but avoiding the hood. Because I care about support and empowerment more than discipline.

What’s probably scariest is that I’m always learning. I’m not trying to just let a white organizer tell me how something should be getting done, because I’d rather learn about all our options and create new ones. I’m picking up on patterns around me, so I’m studying statistics. And then I tell my students, Hey let’s start looking at patterns, let’s study some basic statistics together and then get our hands on some school discipline data to work with and some info on Yale’s property in the city. I’m not trying to waste time on busy work when I have deeper shit to do, so I’m learning how to do some little programming to automate things. I’m learning how to do better graphic design work, so when my kids have something to say, we can make zines and posters that will be most effective. I’m learning about different learning strategies, so that when a class isn’t working for a student, we can modify it instead of leaving them behind. I’m learning from my students because I’m willing and eager to admit and work through the barriers between us, mostly class, instead of seeing that as something to find uncomfortable. But all that is scary.

So my shit is a threat. So what? Mean black girls get shit done.


June Jordan, Alice Walker, Lucille Clifton and Audre Lorde sing together at the Phillis Wheatley Poetry Festival in 1979. 

(via dreamhampton1)

another reminder that what’s black is wrong until is white





do black women not get shunned for having them??

but when a white man is a baby daddy, it’s pure comedy gold!


i saw this shit. i’d say i don’t get it, but i do. i really, really do.


Related is how it’s an exciting big deal when white celebrities are pregnant, whether or not they’re married. Black and latina people being pregnant out of wedlock is confirmation of their inability to form a committed family or assimilate, their promiscuity, the threat they pose of being welfare queens or having anchor babies, and all sorts of other behavior that is pathologized. But look at the tabloid covers, all getting excited over white women’s “baby bumps.” It’s celebrated in a way that it never ever is with women of color.

Nia Long was on the cover of Essence recently with her kids, and I haven’t read the story but I guess it’s about her being a single parent. And even though she has access to money and resources to make sure they’re taken care of, and probably like the best babysitters ever, and is committed to being a single mom, it’s still controversial. Because even a rich celebrity dedicated single mother in the age of “baby bump” even being a term let alone a news topic, well if she’s black, it’s still a problem and people are still speculating that she’ll fail and be a burden. (Which black women are never allowed to be.)

(via ethiopienne)

A whopping 73% of scientists and engineers are white.

A 2006 study showed that white men make up 55% of scientists and engineers (the vast majority) and white women 18%. Asians were the only minority group with significant numbers working in STEM, holding 17% of the jobs between both men and women. When it comes to other minority groups, the statistics are striking. Black men and women make up less than 3% of scientists and engineers, Hispanics 4%, and all other groups 3%. Added together, under-represented minorities make up only 10% of all of those working in science and engineering occupations. Even sadder? Only one in 10 STEM professionals is a minority woman. Read More.

Fun fact that people never believe: I’ve got a Bachelors of Science in physics. No one believes that this little punk black girl has a physics degree. But I can only think of 3 other women of color that were in upper-level physics classes with me, and none of them were black and I don’t think latina either. Twice I was the only woman at all in a physics or engineering class. I remember there being two black men in physics at the same time as me. I know one other black woman in a physics program there, and when we first met we had one of those “I thought I was the only one!” conversations off the bat.

So, yeah, we’re pretty scarce. The look on jerky white people’s faces when they find out what I studied. And that they wanna make things out like they’re infinitely smarter than me, and suddenly they have to recognize that this loud-mouthed little black girl in ratty clothes (got a C- in) rocket science.

The real task is making math and science relevant and accessible to young people of color. Which will actually be my job for the summer, since I start doing math tutoring on Monday and need to figure out more ways to make it useful and radical, to make math another tool through which you describe and deal with what’s going on around you and in the world.

(via bad-dominicana)

When the white patriarchy gets ya down, ›

you can cheer up by looking at all the fabulous outfits Zoe Saldaña has rocked at red carpet events.




Since I’ve been talking about Blue Bell do much recently lol.

Feminist blogs posting about products born out of exploitation of females…

please, do find me a food product that is NOT based on exploiting “females”? 

and i’m talking about human beings here

usually women of color

whose labor is exploited in order for you to have your fucking vegetable based diet that you feel so goddamn smug about.

lemme guess tho, you care way more about the rights of cows than you do about the lives of immigrant women

Well, bam! Is it not female exploitation when poor women/women of color are being exploited working in fields? Or are women of color even further from being women than cows are? Cause, that idea that women of color aren’t human enough to be women? We’ve heard that one before. But unlike a cow, we talk back (whether or not you listen).

Even though I was vegan for several years, I have yet to hear or read an argument that while exploitation of animals is unethical, exploitation of farmworkers is acceptable. If anyone has such an argument, I’ll be waiting.

(via secretandroid)

wait hold up


so the Flaming Lips released that video without Erykah Badu’s consent?

and misled her about the nature of the video?

and everyone was ready to jump down HER throat for being naked again (wasn’t even her, was her sister)??


Once again, Black women as props.

She roasts them though in that letter of hers. “By the way you are an ass.” Reading this makes me want to hear waaay more of her perspective on art, like my takeaway message is The Flaming Lips are white dude assholes but pretty irrelevant, but damn Erykah has shit to say about what she’s creating.

@waynecoyne then… perhaps, next time u get an occasion to work with an artist who respects your mind/art, you should send at least a ROUGh version of the video u PLAN to release b4 u manipulate or compromise the artist’s brand by desperately releasing a poor excuse for shock and nudity that sends a convoluted message that passes as art( to some).
Even with Window Seat there was a method and thought process involved. I have not one need for publicity . I just love artistic dialogue . And just because an image is shocking does not make it art.
You obviously have a misconception of who I am artistically. I don’t mind that but…
By the way you are an ass.
Yu did everything wrong from the on set .

I attempted to resolve this respectfully by having conversations with u after the release but that too proved to be a poor excuse for art.
From jump,
You begged me to sit in a tub of that other shit and I said naw. I refused to sit in any liquid that was not water. But Out of RESPECT for you and the artist you ‘appear’ to be, I Didn’t wanna kill your concept , wanted u to at least get it out of your head . After all, u spent your dough on studio , trip to Dallas etc..

Consequently, brother, As a human I am disgusted with your what appears to be desperation and poor execution. And disregard for others . As a director I am unimpressed . As a sociologist I understand your type. As your fellow artist I am uninspired. As a woman I feel violated and underestimated.
Hope it works out for ya ,Wayne.
Really i could give a shit less.
Still love your live show tho.
And , you’re welcomed.
Lesson learned .

O, And on behalf of all the artists u have manipulated or plan to manipulate, find another way .
These things have been said out of necessity.
And if you don’t like it
you can KiSS MY Glittery ASS .

Tell em, gurrrl.


{my letter to the girlsgetbusy zine, sent in the form of a submission. text below}

hi there. i’m writing to you regarding a recent submission to your blog made by gunmolly depicting a female bodied person of color wearing a slut pride t-shirt. i am imploring you to prevent this image from appearing in the next issue of your zine, retract it from your blog, and write a statement explaining why such a submission is grossly inappropriate

as a woman of color who believes wholeheartedly in the struggle for gender egalitarianism, gunmolly’s submission to your zine offended me on multiple levels.

first and foremost, the relationship between female bodied people of color, word reclamation, and the word slut in particular have a very complicated relationship. the history of female bodied people of color is one of hyper-sexualization and slut shaming, its roots grounded in colonial/imperial practices that reach far and wide. the effects of such understandings surrounding female bodied people of color still persist today. fundamentally, we’ve been called sluts and every synonym akin to it long before slutwalk became a global movement. yet the attention paid to such abuses of our personhood have largely gone unnoticed.

while gunmolly’s picture can be seen as an attempt to acknowledge that complication history and relationship, its a miserably shallow one at best. the depiction in gunmolly’s art is an overly romantic representation between the relationship between female bodied people of color and “slut” reclamation. female bodied people of color wearing a t-shirt saying “slut pride” would not have the same consequences as it would for a white person. when white female bodied people reclaim the word slut, its seen as a revolutionary act. yet when female bodied people of color reclaim the word slut, the world often turns to us as we have finally admitted to a long silently understood truth. the transposing of a white female bodied person’s relationship to the word slut onto that of a female bodied person of color is an unrealistic one, and also a silencing one.

which brings me to my second point. female bodied people of color, regardless of their relationship to the global movement for gender egalitarianism, are perfectly capable of articulating their respective relationships to the word slut via any medium they so choose. by upholding gunmolly’s art as a submission, you are effectively silencing the voices of female bodied people of color while saying its acceptable for white female bodied individuals to take the issues pertinent to female bodied people of color and use them for rhetorical fodder in whatever medium they see fit.

With that being said, I ask that you forgo allowing this submission to make the final cut for your zine. I would also advise soliciting issues related to people of color from actual people of color, and not white people who are willing to co-opt and essentially appropriate our struggles for artistic/rhetorical fodder. In the future, I look forward to seeing productions from this group that are truly inclusive to all those engaged in the struggle to gender egalitarianism, and not ones which simply pay lip service to ideals they have no intention of upholding.

In solidarity and accountability

the womanist behind navigatethestream

For anyone who wants lessons on being a bad-ass.

We don't often talk about how black women and girls are criminalized and subjected to the criminal justice system, the prison industrial complex, and the violation of their bodies and personal space. ›



nor is there discussion about how this is a growing happening in other countries like Canada, where I’m at.

The only stats you find are about white girls and white women. Only research you find has very little to do with black women and girls interaction with the criminal justice system, legislation and penalties. The connections and intersections to be made and spoken of are missing like i don’t even know what.

i hope to do more research on this focusing on Black women because we are the top growing group of people being incarcerated at an increasing rate. and as someone who has experienced this shitty system, it is very personal for me.

Resistance Behind Bars by Victoria Law is on my summer reading list, and I’m reading Assata currently.

Dark skin is beautiful.







*All skin colors are beautiful


A Black woman made that post empowering herself and other Black people who are deemed inferior by Euro-centric beauty ideals. Correcting her post is derailing and inappropriate.

lol, I don’t understand these ppl sometimes.

#cant have anything

OP CORRECT. All skin colors ARE beautiful, but pale skin wasn’t, for five seconds, the topic of conversation. IT’S PRETTY OKAY TO MAKE DARK SKIN THE TOPIC OF POSITIVE CONVERSATION FOR FIVE FUCKING SECONDS WITHOUT BEING TOLD TO ADD WHITE PEOPLE (or any non-white light skin tone, for that matter).

Uggggh light-skinned WOC, why must we do this! I’ll say it again—just like sometimes things aren’t all about white people (srsly, it happens), sometimes conversations about people of color are not about the lighter-skinned folks among us.

If we wanna talk about empowerment & liberation—that shit isn’t gonna get too far in a bubble. How are you gonna get there if you’re ditching your folks? How are we gonna do POC liberation but expect that light folks get to still be at the forefront? Or take offense if we aren’t mentioned for a minute?

When I go HAM for black women, I know it’s largely because I can. Because I am lighter I might get taken more seriously when I speak up. I have an academic background that means I can make my arguments as strong as they need to be and back them up. Same for the amount of cultural capital I’ve got that I can bring into what I do.

Do we really think that if we split ourselves apart from dark skinned POC enough, that we’ll become honorarily white? Hell no. So cut that shit and stick together and let’s do liberation all together.

(via bluestalking-fox)

Young men of color who make me not totally hate everyone and young women of color who will be RUNNIN SHIT some day soon so watch out

What I love about working with teenagers is being able to see them grow over time, or even just over the course of a conversation. My kids’ willingness to just blurt things out means I’m hearing their thoughts—and sometimes I really don’t need to (“Miss Camille, I gotta go take a huge doo-doo”, Great, thanks for sharing), but often that means I’m getting insight on how they’re figuring things out.

So my zine class this session is mostly this crew of younger girls of color who are some of the most bad-ass women I have met in my life under any circumstances, like they know I am their biggest cheerleader and intentionally get them riled up about sexism and racism so we can yell and call people on their bullshit and hopefully make something creative out of our yelling. Then there’s two boys who I’ve worked with really closely since last year who have a tendency to yell about everything whether or not they really have a sense of what they’re talking about.

I showed them the video Walking Home about street harassment, because most of the girls are writing about judgment of teenage girls, body image, weight, sexual harassment, etc. They all started arguing, first along the lines of “Guys always do blah blah blah,” “Girls always do blah blah blah” that was too general to be productive and was just getting everyone mad at each other. So I made a rule that we had to talk from experience (their teachers stress being able to use text evidence in essays and responses, so that was how I framed it but where their lives were the text) and we started getting more productive.

The girls all started sharing stories about street harassment, but the boys stayed defensive so I asked them to talk about why the conversation bothered them. At first they were saying they didn’t want to talk about sexual harassment, but then it turned out that they really didn’t want to be associated with dudes who harass women and that they were responding to being lumped in with sleazy dudes. So I asked them what they do to not be jerks like that, and they were really adamant about thinking it’s fucked up how a lot of guys treat girls.

THIS IS THE SUPER RAD PART: One of them shared a story about one of those exercises where everyone steps forward if some question is true (like an ice-breaker exercise), that he remembered from several years ago, where every single girl stepped forward for a question about having been harassed by strangers in public, and he told us all how much that stuck with him and made him realize how seriously all the women around him have to deal with harassment. He then announced, “One of the things that I hate the most is domestic violence,” and started talking about his community intervening in a domestic violence situation. So I brought the conversation back to make sure everyone caught that connection, one that many adults fail to make, that street harassment and domestic violence are related and that there is a whole spectrum of ways women, and especially women of color, have to fight for ownership of their own bodies. I asked them about what they can do as dudes to support the girls and women around them, and they talked about calling out other guys for harassing girls and being willing to fight (physically and non-physically) if need be to get guys to cut out sexist behavior. Those boys might now be teaming up to make a comic about that realization of how the girls around them are treated by men.

It was awesome to see them move from defensiveness to anger to creativity over the course of about 10 minutes. We all got heated, like kids were shouting at each other and getting mad at me too. And I loved it. Cause it isn’t often that class is a space you can bring in your own life as your text, or feel compelled to start yelling about the subject, or can express that much emotion, so I felt like maybe I’m starting to do this all right. Mostly I was excited to see how much they were willing to share with each other, both their experiences and their emotion and energy and ideas. Instead of being competitive with what they’re working on, we’re making plans to collaborate or let their zines converse with one another. They’re making plans already to distribute their zines around the school, or make posters to put up, and most of them haven’t even written much yet. They were already going, “We need a campaign against sexism!”, “Let’s protest harassment!” so we’re going to start with what they’re writing and finding ways to spread those ideas they’re heated about around the school.

So I don’t even have words for how cool they all are. Like, nothing I could say is gonna cut it.

After school I worked with some freshmen to start putting on paper the things they don’t like about the school, like structural things that the administration and teachers could change. Things like certain actions of teachers that make students feel disrespected and untrusted. They yelled and I took notes, and we told the principal that we will be handing her a manifesto sometime soon (can I coin the word “FRESHMANIFESTO”?), and they even threatened a flash mob in her office. Among many brilliant things they brought up, I had never before thought about the relationship between body image of girls of color and school dress codes. Like I’d had conversations with girls of color before where they’ve said that girls who are more curvy (and almost always black and/or latina) are more likely to get in trouble for dress code violations or perceived violations. But today they pointed out how sometimes wearing something like leggings is a celebration of finally feeling okay with your body and your black-girl-curvy-fullness, and it feels fucked up to then get disciplined for breaking the dress code but seeing skinny flat white girls not getting in trouble for wearing the same thing.

In conclusion, they are the shit. And this is me saying that after two 10-hour days in a row.

"Walking Home", short video by Nuala Cabral from Media That Matters festival.

I’m going to show this to my zine class next week. I have this crew of tough girls of color in the class, and they’re all outspoken about ways that men and boys treat them, and sexist messages in the media. They already held down an argument with two boys in the class about how girls of color are shown in the media and how much more complicated they are. (One of the boys was defensive because he really wants to not be a jerk to girls, because he is a sweetheart.)

Today we went over the topics they’re each writing about and got started asking why each of those topics are important to them and in society, and most of those girls are writing about some aspect of dealing with sexism as a young woman of color. I suggested that they all stay in conversation with each other to see what they’re each writing and how their experiences relate and differ.

So that is what I’m working on for the next couple of weeks. They’re going to make such amazing zines, they’re already putting amazingness on paper and getting each other riled up and supporting each other. I talked with one of them about how important it is for women of color to get reminders that we’re not wastes of space, to combat all the negative messaging we normally get. She and another girl are reading copies of a zine I gave them called Fat Is Beautiful and doing similar projects to support girls being okay with their body shapes and sizes. Another girl is writing about teenagers understanding their sexuality and orientation, and making a supportive environment.

I think with this round of the class I need to make sure we have time to distribute their zines around school or make posters from their zines to put up, because they’re all doing really important work to assert themselves and support each other and I’m already so proud of them omg!! These girls are gonna be running shit.




Can people stop making fun of Girls HBO for being all-white and just state that they’re uncomfortable with a female-dominant show already

Wait what?

Most of the (completely legitimate!, I might add) criticism I’ve heard of Girls being all-white has come from women of color- women of color who want POC to actually be represented AT ALL on this show.

So I’m a little confused.

Do you think that having WOC on the show would take away from the female-dominant nature of the show?

It seems like you’re conflating “white women” with “normal women”. By implying that a female dominant show would no longer be female dominant if it included people of color, you’re saying that your definition of female does not include people of color.

Which is exactly the problem.

uhhh… i know nothing about this show except that only women of color have been making a complaint. but yet again, Black women ain’t women huh? so they are just uncomfortable with the universal stand in for all women, white women, cause they aren’t really women. yea. i see you.

I have a brain teaser for you: