SHOTS FIRED!!!!: Beysus vs. Jesus; King Bey vs. Mammy

Because the critique can’t come harder than this, Crunktastic of the Crunk Feminist Collective, giving it their all:

“I am really tired of the American Church conflating its age-old anxieties with the bodies of Black women, anxieties born out of sexist and racist presuppositions, with calls for conservative morality. The African American Church, in particular, has come to think that the respectability politics around proper public moral self-presentation that we created as a strategy for negotiating a violent post-Emancipation world is synonymous with a theology for living. The White Church needs to grapple with its sexualized racism and racialized sexism. Lorde help them.”

In other news, and I posted this on Twitter earlier today, someone please bless me with the name of the scholar who discussed Beyonce’s penis at the Queerness of Hip Hop conference at Harvard earlier this academic year. I need do a praise dance in their name while flipping my Yaki their way because my life will never be the same again. Amen. Amen. Amen.

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There Was This Concert on Sunday…

…in which Bey decided to stomp on All of Her Haters, literally dripping so much black feminist sex on her fans that some folks just couldn’t handle it

…and then a 2 Broke Girls ‘Spectacular’ followed, redeeming wounded white womanhood (or something)…


…but thankfully Kid Fury laid me out with the TRUTH: “Beyonce is the Blueprint.” (H/T @MoyaBailey)

…even if she did get blamed when this happened….

…but it wasn’t her. It was just New Orleans, once again, reminding the entire country that infrastructure is nothing to take for granted.

This Superbowl was as American as it gets, y’all. Take notes.

 

A Quiet Corner….

Sometimes what you need is a quiet corner to sit and think in.

I’m not talking about writing. Writing is a 5K run you do every morning because the afterglow tastes sweet and clean.

We need “more writing, less blogging,” Summer says. I agree. Much more. We need more words and we need more love.

But I’m all out of words and writing and grammar these days. I’m exhausted because I’m still having the same conversations about guns and rape and prison I was having ten years ago. Meanwhile Hadiya Pendleton died. And I didn’t know her and I didn’t know the forty-three other people shot and killed in January (as logged by Red Eye) but I love her with the love an oldest sister holds for her siblings. And Chief Keef was sentenced to sixty days in a youth detention center for holding a gun (at a gun range, in a video interview) and I have no love for him, really I don’t, but he is a child so the love I have for him is the love a future mother has for her sons.

That’s just Chicago. One little city on the coast of one little lake. Then there’s Delhi, Santa Maria, Cairo. I want to re-read Joy James and Arundhati Roy and Alice Walker, put a pillow over my head and sleep the rest of the winter.

Sitting in my room, black girl colored indigo, I imagine how it must feel to feel safe. To see an outrage instead of an everyday. To trust, if blindly, that when you scream someone, any fucking one, will come running.

What a silly, small, meaningless thing. Safety. A simple, impossible desire.

But I want it. I want to walk outside and feel control and be an ecstasy of black heritage. I want it this month. I want it every month. I want to lick and roll the ratchet around in my mouth and lock arms with my own futurity. I want to be assumed to be the one left standing at the end of the war. Instead of the slave following the caravan. Or one of the faceless dead.

I’m so foolish. I thought I was here for writing and done with blogging. What the hell are words for if they can’t do basic shit like heal a wound, stop a bullet, or wipe a tear?

But I’m at a bottleneck. And what else is blogging for?

A Quickie Post-ASA Thought from MZB

Now that the tan is starting to fade, I’m reflecting on my #ASA2012 experience.  There is a longer post in the works, but in the meantime, can we please discuss what makes conferencing so difficult????

Luckily, Moya ZB makes reflecting on this pretty easy:

“There’s so much great content at ASA but with a schedule from 8am to 10pm with no lunch or dinner breaks (with few meal options nearby) it becomes hard to sustain yourself as an attendee. American Studies can learn from its own interdisciplinary sub-fields, namely disability studies, and think about how to promote more wellness while conferencing.”

There it is folks.  Time, money, stress, social anxiety (if you are one of those), politics of academe, and the drama of travel are all there.  Conferencing is HARD.

But an amazing time was had by all!!  If you haven’t yet, check out the Alter Egos Media Tumblr.  Browse the posts to explore the life of an #AntiJemima.  I’m long post-conference and I’m still adding to it so expect new things to chew on in the many moons to come.

I wonder what Alter Egos III will look like?

Preparing…

Looking for the author of this image..

I’m compiling material for a panel at the American Studies Association conference, happening in Puerto Rico next week.  The title?

On Alter Egos and Infinite Literacies, Part 2 (An #AntiJemimas Imperative)

Read Part I here.

I’m presenting with Fleshy Prof but I’ll basically be playing myself (yeah, wrap your minds around that).  And the entire family is invited:  Zora Walker, the Sable Fan Gyrl, the WOC Survival Kit–even Pretty Magnolia’s fine ass.

This little intellectual endeavor comes at a difficult time.  Personally and professionally, I am heavy, struggling to find my voice and stake my claim.  Balancing, consolidating, and exposing the alters will be like walking into a cold classroom filled with hostile, condescending adults and stripping down to a bright red thong.  It will be sexy, nerve-wracking, and vaguely reminiscent of slavery.

While pulling the material for the presentation together, I’m realizing  I’m more of a practitioner than I ever thought.  The #AntiJemimas are more than a project.  They are a lifestyle (note the new blog title) and a survival imperative.  So what does presentating a practice look like…in practice?  How does it roll into the audience?  Does it wave goodbye when attendees come and go?  Does it LOL?  Does it (O_o)?

There is touching to be done in Puerto Rico.  Touching and laughing and mindstroking and healing are waiting for me.  And I can’t wait.

But damn.  I’m not really that much of a voyeur to be so exposed.

 

This Erotic Life

“As a Black lesbian feminist, I have a particular feeling, knowledge, and understanding for those sisters with whom I have danced hard, played, or even fought. This deep participation has often been the forerunner for joint concerted actions not possible before.”

Another historic eve.  Another election.

Go out, go vote.  I am.

But I’m also sitting in the lab, folded around my work, reminding myself and reminded that community is created through love making on the daily.

 

 

[Full Text: Audre Lorde, “Uses of the Erotic: The Erotic as Power” in Sister Outsider: Essays & Speeches By Audre Lorde (1984; repr., Berkley, CA: Crossing Press, 2007), 53-59.]

 

The Universe is Speaking

The universe has been throwing a lot at me the last few weeks.  Personal, professional, economic–you name it.  My stamina is running low.  My batteries have no time to recharge.  I’ve had moments that made me question my worth as a scholar, global citizen, net-izen, and friend.  At this point, all I can do is show up–and only because I hear someone’s voice telling me I’d damn well better.

Days like today, I wonder if the #gawds are even listening.

Lo and behold, the universe is speaking.

Happy Birthday Alice Walker!

Kima posting homage on Twitter reminded me that I was about to miss the birthday of the visionary whose words head this blog, who is the namesake of one half of my politico alter-ego, and who has helped me through more hard times than I can count.

Just seeing her presence everywhere reminded me I am more than I am.  I’ve been inspired, calmed, and pummeled by Alice Walker’s words, and by the example she sets as a writer, pacifist, and social justice conjurer.  Gawd bless her.  A world with Alice Walker in it can never be damned.  It’s just a world waiting to be saved.

Speaking of saving, today the always loving Alexis Pauline Gumbs reminded me that I also need to be saving myself.  Introducing Brilliance Remastered:

Calling all community accountable scholars and visionary under-represented grad students!

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Winter Has Come #CapricornSeason

Norma Wood. 17mm, f16, 20 ", ISO 200 Image Credit: Akos Kiss

To some, December means the end of the year, the end of the warmth and the return of caramel macchiato and pumpkin spice latte addictions.

For me, December means the end of stress, other people’s labor and the beginning of beautiful snowy landscapes, family gatherings and time I can call my own.  I have time to dive into ideas I dreamed up during the summer months and tackle fall’s loose ends.  I’ve always done my best writing and thinking over winter breaks.  Something about the cool air just clears my brain of all the clutter.

Winter is here.  Capricorn season is upon us.

And so is 2012.  Sooooooo much happened….

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