Sisterhood Agenda features a picture of actress, Viola Davis, in its Black Girls Guide: How to Transition to Naturally Beautiful Hair. Davis relishes the opportunity to portray a character who is “sexy… complicated… mysterious” in Shonda Rhimes’ new hit television show, How to Get Away With Murder. In a recent newspaper article, the New York Times calls Shonda Rhimes “angry” and Viola Davis “less classically beautiful.” Watch how we defy stereotypes and labels:
“It seems that other people, they don’t quite get it, which I find insanely amusing. The New York Times seem shocked, let me say it again, shocked, and called Shonda an angry Black woman and says you are ‘less classically beautiful’ than typical TV stars. Now isn’t beauty subjective?” Whoopi Goldberg, “The View” co-host.
“I think that beauty is subjective. I’ve heard that statement ‘less classically beautiful’ my entire life,” states Viola Davis. “Being a dark-skinned Black woman, you heard it from the womb. And classically not beautiful is a fancy term for saying ugly. And denouncing you. And erasing you. Now…it worked when I was younger. It no longer works for me now… It’s about teaching a culture how to treat you and how to see you… Because at the end of the day, you define you.”
These long-lost series of photographs, unseen for 120 years, is the dramatic centrepiece of an illuminating new exhibition called Black Chronicles II. “The portraits were last shown in the London Illustrated News in 1891,” says Renée Mussai, who has co-curated the show at London’s Rivington Place alongside Mark Sealy MBE, director of Autograph ABP, a foundation that focuses on Black cultural identity often through the use of overlooked archives. “The Hulton Archive, where they came from, did not even know they existed until we uncovered them while excavating their archive as part of our research project.”
“There is a certain melancholy to many of these images, particularly the portraits of children, that speaks of exile and estrangement… The history of colonialism, in all its contradictions, is present in these portraits,” says Mussai.
Drawing on the metaphor of the chronicle the exhibition presents over 200 photographs, the majority of which have never been exhibited or published before. As a curated body of work, these photographs present new knowledge and offer different ways of seeing the Black subject in Victorian Britain, and contribute to an ongoing process of redressing persistent ‘absence’ within the historical record.
Black Chronicles II is a public showcase of Autograph ABP’s commitment to continuous critical enquiry into archive images which have been overlooked, under-researched or simply not recognised as significant previously, but which are highly relevant to black representational politics and cultural history today.
Black Chronicles II is at Rivington Place, London, until 29 November 2014.
Directors Guild of America released a report on the number of non-white and non-male directors hired to direct prime time episodic television, between 2013 and 2014, and across broadcast, basic cable, premium cable, and high budget original content series made specifically for online consumption.
In its report, the DGA says that it looked at more than 220 scripted series, and 3,500 episodes, produced in the 2013-2014 network television season, and the 2013 cable television season. And here’s what they found:
- Caucasian males directed 69% of all episodes;
- Minority males directed 17% of all episodes;
- Caucasian females directed 12% of all episodes; and
Minority females directed 2% of all episodes
“Minority” includes all ethnic minorities, not just those of African descent. This statistic provides perspective when looking at our entertainment industry and wondering where women and girls of African descent fit in. The good news: sisters are taking back their identity and images by writing, directing and starring in their own independent films.
October marks Domestic Violence Awareness Month, an effort to bring more awareness to an issue that will affect an estimated one in four women living in the United States. Alarmingly, domestic violence — defined as “the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault, and/or other abusive behavior perpetrated by an intimate partner against another” — has a profoundly negative impact on women’s long-term health.
A recent study by the Verizon Foundation and More Magazine shows that domestic violence is closely linked to chronic health problems. Over 80 percent of female victims of domestic violence also struggle from chronic health diseases, such as “asthma, diabetes, [and] digestive disease.”
However, what is often missing from the broader discussion is the fact that a residual effect of domestic violence disproportionately impacts the long-term health of women of color.
Four Girls in Birmingham Alabama 51 years , 250 girls in Nigeria four months ago. Are these two things linked? Absolutely. We are the solution to the issue. Come let us stand for dignity, safety and vision FOR OUR DAUGHTERS.
Saturday September 20, 4pm New Winston Museum 713 Marshall St. Winston- Salem, NC
Join us in a community discussion led by Oyesina Ogunmola as we discuss the problems surrounding the continual misuse of women for the entertainment and comfort of men. This worldwide phenomena create a hostile environment for women and girls to grow and flourish. Let us discuss our responsibilities to address this troubling issue.
This event is free and is a part of I am Worthy’s FOR OUR Daughters Community Campaign. For more information or questions you can visit http://www.iamworthyenterprises.com/ . You may also send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In June, after The Huffington Post ran an investigative report on a woman allegedly murdered by her boyfriend, we received an outpouring of responses from domestic violence survivors who wanted to explain why they had stayed with their abusers. We spent the next three months interviewing these women. While they offered hundreds of reasons, ranging from the logistical to the deeply personal, some common themes emerged: Fear. Love. Family. Money. Shame. Isolation.
In this series, you will hear from six survivors of domestic violence about why they didn’t leave sooner. The stories — told in their own words — are as distinct as they are similar. One woman suffered a brutal week of abuse before fleeing. Others stayed for decades trying to make things work. Two women were shot, the bullets narrowly missing their hearts. Another endured years of incessant stalking.
Need help? In the U.S., call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) for the National Domestic Violence Hotline.