The Hate We Live: Angie Thomas’ Ode to Black Girl Rage

[By: Ebony Perro] Angie Thomas’ novel turned screenplay, The Hate U Give (THUG), is a tragically mimetic story that highlights a Black girl’s coming of age while navigating trauma-induced anger and growing up in two disparate communities. As a New York Times Best Seller, National Book Award Long List winner, and with a current box office total of over 18 million dollars, the novel’s success […]

Viewing Cane River

[By: Jerry W. Ward, Jr.] Monday, October 22, 2018, was a special day in the year-long celebration of three hundred years of history in New Orleans, because we had the privilege of seeing a remarkable instance of black film in the history of cinema in the United States of America. We saw Horace Jenkins’s Cane River (1982), a major feature of the 29th New Orleans […]

BlacKkKlansman: Talking Black, Paying Forward

[By: Danyelle M. Greene] In mid-August, BlacKkKlansman was released in theaters. Its subject is the “crazy, outrageous, incredible, true story” of Ron Stallworth’s undercover work as the first Black member of the Ku Klux Klan. The film linked racist imagery in early American films to a detective case from the 1970’s and news coverage of racial violence today. The work that this film does in […]

“You Need to Live More”: the Power of Performance in Morgan Parker’s and Tommy Pico’s Poetry

[By: Morgan McComb] Black Poetry Day is held every year on October 17th, the birthday of Jupiter Hammon, the first published Black poet. Hammon, who was first published when he was 49, is considered the beginning of an incomparable legacy of Black poets including Phyllis Wheatley, Paul Laurence Dunbar, Langston Hughes, Claude McKay, Gwendolyn Brooks, Sterling A. Brown, Lucille Clifton, Maya Angelou, Amiri Baraka, Rita […]

25 Toni Morrison Quotes That Left Me Shook

Sunday marked the twenty-fifth anniversary of the awarding of the Nobel Prize for Literature to Toni Morrison, the first black woman to receive the prestigious award. Although the honor wasn’t necessary to validate the importance of Morrison’s thought-provoking vision and moving stories that have altered the way we traditionally understand what fiction does,  her acceptance speech  gives just a 30-minute glimpse into the depths of […]

A Review and Reading Companion to Noname’s Room 25

[By: Anthony Boynton] Noname’s sophomore album Room 25 is hypnotic and alluring. Indeed a coming of age story, this self-released project is a meditation of what the Los Angeles-based Chicago rapper calls her “darkest secrets”, and you should hear her out, like the track “Ace” (feat. Smino and Saba) says. Brilliantly mixing rap, jazz, and neo-soul, Noname crafts a solid album that is not only […]

The Joy of Refusing

[By: Jerry W. Ward Jr.] From a pre-future vantage, one can discover the joy of refusing. Refusing or resisting is neither an innate virtue nor a vice, despite the fact that one must ultimately account for the moral properties of one’s actions . Refusing is an opportunity to live with the alternatives that might better identify one’s historicity. Consider the outcomes of refusing to read […]