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The Maya Way: Celebrating the Light Within

April 8, 2014

Maya Way

 

Call for Films

April 7, 2014

IBWFF Call for Films 2014

Call for Films

FREE Submission Application until August 2, 2014

The International Black Women’s Film Festival is looking for narrative features, documentaries, and shorts from any genre (except adult/”porn”, instructional or promotional films).  is prioritizing films completed within the past year, specifically, films completed after July 1, 2013. Films completed after July 1, 2013, have a higher possibility of being selected, though it is not a guarantee for selection.

Download & Share Flyer! (PDF)

Requirements // Lead character prominently features a woman of African descent/African Diaspora in a non-pornographic and/or non-stereotypical role. AND Film may feature the experiences, viewpoints, lifestyles, socio-economic position or stories of Black women, but it is not required for eligibility. OR Film was directed and/or produced by a Black woman/woman of the African diaspora (this includes women of the following groups/cultures: Adivasi, Aboriginal Australians, Dravidian, Pilipino Negrito / Ati, Seminole, Dalit, African Latino, Arawak, Carib, Garifuna, “Black Indian”, Black African groups/tribes, East Timorese, Solomon Islander/indigenous Pacific Islander, African/indigenous Caribbean, African Brazilian, indigenous Fijian, indigenous Maori, multi/bi-racial, et al.).

More About Requirements // Films should be timely, or directly features issues, activities, politics that influence the lives of Black women around the world. Digital shorts, animation and experimental films may present any issue, but filmmakers should be Black women or prominently feature a Black woman character or issue. Formatting // All films (digital, animation, etc.) must be transferred onto a DVD for screenings. The IBWFF no longer accepts VHS or BETA tapes! Online films must be encoded using either Quicktime, MPEG, Flash (*.swf) or Windows Media formats. You are welcome to forward a link to where your film can be viewed online. (Online, digital films must be transferred to DVD, if you’d like it reviewed offline. For theater projection, you must format your film for DVD and theater screen.)

About YouTube, Bebo and other online services // If you’d like your film to be considered as a “premiere,” then it cannot be available online via such services as YouTube, Bebo, Hulu, Brightcove, etc. If you are using one of these services, your film may be considered for IBWFF TV, but not the film festival. Click for More Info…

3 ESSENCE Covers for May 2014

April 7, 2014

Presented in Alphabetical Order:

erykahbadueessence

ledisiessence

solangeessence

Prevention is Power

April 4, 2014

Think Cultural Health

OMHPrevention is Power

April is National Minority Health Month! Each April, OMH raises awareness about health disparities that continue to affect racial and ethnic minorities and the nation as a whole. This year’s theme is “Prevention is Power: Taking Action for Health Equity.” Find out how you can get involved!

 

25 More Empowering Books for Black Girls

March 28, 2014

Ages 2-4

Please, Baby, Please – Spike Lee and Tonya Lewis Lee

Academy-Award nominated filmmaker Spike Lee and his wife, producer Tonya Lewis Lee, preset a behind-the-scenes look at the chills, spills, and unequivocal thrills of bringing up baby!

Girls Hold Up This World – Jada Pinkett Smith

Actress Jada Pinkett Smith–wife of superstar Will Smith–lovingly captures the strength, unity, and beauty that live in girls in this poignant photographic book.

Kindergarten – 2nd Grade
The Magic Poof – Stephen Hodges

Seven year old Ange-Marie has always felt different. Who wouldn’t when your best friend is literally attached to you? The Poof is a great ball of curly hair that sits directly on top of Ange-Marie’s head. His magical and playful nature always seems to produce mischief and adventure. In book one of The Magic Poof series, Ange-Marie must decide what to wear for school picture day. But The Poof also wants to look good for picture day! How does Ange-Marie look her best and keep her enchanted and hairy friend a secret? In the end, both The Poof and Ange-Marie find that compromise is the key in any friendship.

I Like Myself! – Karen Beaumont
High on energy and imagination, this ode to self-esteem encourages kids to appreciate everything about themselves–inside and out. Messy hair? Beaver breath? So what! Here’s a little girl who knows what really matters.
Grace for President – Kelly S. DiPucchio

When Grace’s teacher reveals that the United States has never had a female president, Grace decides to be the first. And she immediately starts off her political career as a candidate the school’s mock election!

Princess Cupcake Jones and the Missing Tutu -  Ylleya Fields

Cupcake Jones is a modern day princess, who like many girls, loves her tutu, playing with her toys, and most of all creating a mess! Follow Princess Cupcake Jones in her first book, Princess Cupcake Jones and the Missing Tutu. In this adventure, when her beloved tutu goes missing, Cupcake learns the importance of tidying up and putting things in their proper place.

Nina bonita - Ana Maria Machado

In this wonderful story about diversity, a white rabbit falls in love with a black girl and longs to have beautiful dark skin like hers.

A collection of twenty-five African-American folktales focuses on strong female characters.

Thunder Rose Jerdine Nolen
On a dark night of howling rain and booming thunder, Jackson and Millicent MacGruder welcome a new baby girl into their lives. Imagine their surprise when she sits up, thanks them for bringing her into the world, and informs them that she’s quite partial to the name Rose.
Most Loved in All the World - Tonya Cherie Hegamin

An authentic and powerful account of slavery and how a handmade quilt helps a little girl leave home for freedom.

In this tender, beautiful letter to his daughters, President Barack Obama has written a moving tribute to thirteen groundbreaking Americans and the ideals that have shaped our nation. From the artistry of Georgia O’Keeffe, to the courage of Jackie Robinson, to the patriotism of George Washington, President Obama sees the traits of these heroes within his own children, and within all of America’s children.

Keena Ford is so excited to go on a field trip to the United States Capitol with her second-grade class! At school, she is running for a spot on the student council, and on the field trip she’s going to meet a real live U.S. representative. The only trouble is, mean Tiffany Harris keeps teasing Keena and taking the best place in line. Keena doesn’t mean to get into trouble, but trouble seems to find her anyway!

The Lucky Stone – Lucille Clifton

There is nothing Tee enjoys more than sitting out on the porch with her great-greatmother, listening to the fascinating stories about the lucky stone.

MOTHER AND DAUGHTER, grandmother and granddaughter, aunt and niece, friend and friend. For a hundred years, generations of women from Gee’s Bend have quilted together, sharing stories, trading recipes, singing hymns—all the while stitchin’ and pullin’ thread through cloth. Every day Baby Girl listens, watches, and waits, until she’s called to sit at the quilting frame. Piece by piece, she puzzles her quilt together—telling not just her story, but the story of her family, the story of Gee’s Bend, and the story of her ancestors’ struggle for freedom.

The Girl Who Spun Gold - Virginia Hamilton
“Stirring…with a rhythm just right for reading aloud…a West Indian version of the universal little-man (Rumpelstiltskin) folktale. Quashiba’s mother…boasts that her daughter can spin and weave a whole field of the finest gold thread. Dramatic words and pictures.” – Booklist, starred review. “A charming and visually stunning tale of cunning, greed, and quixotic good fortune.”
Bintou’s Braids – Sylvianne Diouf

Bintou wants braids. Long, pretty braids, woven with gold coins and seashells, just like her older sister and the other women in her family. But she is too young for braids. Instead, all she has are four little tufts of hair; all she ever gets are cornrows. However, when Bintou saves the lives of her two young cousins and is offered a reward of her choosing, Bintou discovers that true beauty comes in many different forms.

Cendrillon : A Caribbean Cinderella – Robert D. San Souci
You may think you already know this story about a beautiful servant girl, a cruel stepmother, a magnificent ball, and a lost slipper. But you’ve never heard it for true.
Now you can hear the tale from someone who was there: a poor washerwoman from the island of Martinique. She has just one thing in the world to love, her goddaughter Cendrillon. When she finds Cendrillon heartsick over a rich man’s son, at first she doesn’t know what to do. But she has sharp wits, a strong will, and the magic wand her mother left her — and soon she has a plan to give her dear Cendrillon the gift of a love that will change her life.
If a bus could talk, it would tell the story of a young African-American girl named Rosa who had to walk miles to her one-room schoolhouse in Alabama while white children rode to their school in a bus. It would tell how the adult Rosa rode to and from work on a segregated city bus and couldn’t sit in the same row as a white person. It would tell of the fateful day when Rosa refused to give up her seat to a white man and how that act of courage inspired others around the world to stand up for freedom.

Nikki and Deja – Karen English

Meet Nikki and Deja, who live next door to each other and are best friends. They do everything together—watch Saturday morning cartoons, play jacks, jump double Dutch at recess, and help each other with their homework for Mrs. Shelby’s third-grade class. But when an arrogant new girl arrives and Nikki and Deja form a club that would exclude her, the results are not what they expect. This warm, easy-to-read chapter book from an award-winning author captures all the joys and complexities of elementary school life—particularly friendships and cliques—with finesse and humor.

4th-6th Grade
On March 2, 1955, an impassioned teenager, fed up with the daily injustices of Jim Crow segregation, refused to give her seat to a white woman on a segregated bus in Montgomery, Alabama. Instead of being celebrated as Rosa Parks would be just nine months later, fifteen-year-old Claudette Colvin found herself shunned by her classmates and dismissed by community leaders. Undaunted, a year later she dared to challenge segregation again as a key plaintiff in Browder v. Gayle, the landmark case that struck down the segregation laws of Montgomery and swept away the legal underpinnings of the Jim Crow South.

One Crazy Summer – Rita Williams-Garcia
Set during one of the most tumultuous years in recent American history, One Crazy Summer is the heartbreaking, funny tale of three girls who travel to Oakland, California, in 1968 in search of the mother who abandoned them.

6th-8th grade
Ninth Ward – Jewell Parker Rhodes

Twelve-year-old Lanesha lives in a tight-knit community in New Orleans’ Ninth Ward. She doesn’t have a fancy house like her uptown family or lots of friends like the other kids on her street. But what she does have is Mama Ya-Ya, her fiercely loving caretaker, wise in the ways of the world and able to predict the future.

Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry – Mildred D. Taylor

The story of one African American family fighting to stay together and strong in the face of brutal racist attacks, illness, poverty, and betrayal in the Deep South of the 1930s.

Aya – Marguerite Abuet
Ivory Coast, 1978. Family and friends gather at Aya’s house every evening to watch the country’s first television ad campaign promoting the fortifying effects of Solibra, “the strong man’s beer.” It’s a golden time, and the nation, too–an oasis of affluence and stability in West Africa–seems fueled by something wondrous.
Zora and Me – Victoria Bond

Racial duplicity threatens an idyllic African American community in the turn-of-the-century South in a dazzling debut inspired by the early life of Zora Neale Hurston.

Hush – Jacqueline Woodson

Evie Thomas is not who she used to be. Once she had a best friend, a happy home and a loving grandmother living nearby. Once her name was Toswiah.
Now, everything is different. Her family has been forced to move to a new place and change their identities. But that’s not all that has changed. Her once lively father has become depressed and quiet. Her mother leaves teaching behind and clings to a new-found religion. Her only sister is making secret plans to leave.
And Evie, struggling to find her way in a new city where kids aren’t friendly and the terrain is as unfamiliar as her name, wonders who she is.

Zahrah the Windseeker - Nnedi Okorafor-Mbachu

In the Ooni Kingdom, children born dada—with vines growing in their hair—are rumored to have special powers. Zahrah Tsami doesn’t know anything about that. She feels normal. Others think she’s different—they fear her. Only Dari, her best friend, isn’t afraid of her. But then something begins to happen—something that definitely marks Zahrah as different—and the only person she can tell is Dari. He pushes her to investigate, edging them both closer and closer to danger. Until Dari’s life is on the line. Only Zahrah can save him, but to do so she’ll have to face her worst fears alone, including the very thing that makes her different.

Reblogged from For Harriet

25 Empowering Books for Little Black Girls

March 27, 2014

black-girl-reading

Reblogged from For Harriet:

From the moment they come into the world, little Black girls works just a little bit harder than their peers to construct a healthy sense of self in a society that prizes values and attributes that don’t mirror those they possess. We as their caregivers must help them find the way by offering them as many affirming messages as possible. We can do this with our words and by our example; however, books can also prove to be important points of contact into the souls and spirits of Black girls. Here, we’ve compiled a list of books to promote a positive self-image in younger, Black girls.

Age 2-4
Girl of Mine - Jabari Asim

This companion book to Boy of Mine shows a dazzling little girl enjoying playtime in the moon’s soft glow. As daddy cradles his baby girl, she is suddenly whisked away on a fantastical adventure, swinging above lush floral gardens under the golden moonlight. The sweet text, inspired by “Rock-A-Bye Baby,” will whisk little ones off to peaceful slumber.

Lola at the Library - Anna Mcquinn

On Tuesdays, spunky Lola and her mommy go to the library. Come with Lola on her favorite weekly trip in this celebration of books and the people who love them.

I Can Do It Too! - Karen Baicker

This heartwarming story reminds us how satisfying it is to grow up surrounded by love. I Can Do It Too! affirms a little girl’s growing independence as she, too, can begin to do all the things she sees her parents, relatives and neighbors do: pouring juice at breakfast, strumming a guitar, and even riding a bike! The simple cadence of text and direct-to-the-heart art result in a book as warm and generous as its message, providing reading pleasure for toddlers, older siblings, and the grown-ups who love them.

Preschool

Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters: An African Tale – John Steptoe

This is the tale of Mufaro’s two daughters, two beautiful girls who react in different ways to the king’s search for a wife – one is aggressive and selfish, the other kind and dignified. The king takes on disguises to learn the true nature of both girls and of course chooses Nyasha, the kind and generous daughter, to be his queen.

Something Beautiful – Sharon Dennis Wyeth

A little girl longs to see beyond the scary sights on the sidewalk and the angry scribbling in the halls of her building. When her teacher writes the word beautifulon the blackboard, the girl decides to look for something beautiful in her neighborhood. Her neighbors tell her about their own beautiful things.

The Colors of Us – Karen Katz

Seven-year-old Lena is going to paint a picture of herself. She wants to use brown paint for her skin. But when she and her mother take a walk through the neighborhood, Lena learns that brown comes in many different shades.

Nappy Hair  - Carolivia Herron

A lively, empowering story about Brenda’s knotted-up, twisted, nappy hair and how it got to be that way! Told in the African-American “call and response” tradition, this story leaps off the page

I Love My Hair! -  Natasha Anastasia Tarpley

This whimsical, evocative story about a girl named Keyana encourages African-American children to feel good about their special hair and be proud of their heritage

Cassie, who flew above New York in Tar Beach, soars into the sky once more. This time, she and her brother Be Be meet a train full of people, and Be Be joins them. But the train departs before Cassie can climb aboard. With Harriet Tubman as her guide, Cassie retraces the steps escaping slaves took on the real Underground Railroad and is finally reunited with her brother at the story’s end.

Kindergarten to Second Grade
Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt – Deborah Hopkinson
As a seamstress in the Big House, Clara dreams of a reunion with her Momma, who lives on another plantation–and even of running away to freedom. Then she overhears two slaves talking about the Underground Railroad. In a flash of inspiration, Clara sees how she can use the cloth in her scrap bag to make a map of the land–a freedom quilt–that no master will ever suspect.
Come On, Rain – Karen Hesse

Newbery Medalist Karen Hesse recreates the body and soul-renewing experience of a summer downpour after a sweltering city heat wave.


Amazing Grace – Mary Hoffman

Grace loves stories, whether they’re from books, movies, or the kind her grandmother tells. So when she gets a chance to play a part in Peter Pan, she knows exactly who she wants to be. Remarkable watercolor illustrations give full expression to Grace’s high-flying imagination.

Jamaica’s Find  - Juanita Havill
Jamaica finds a stuffed dog at the playground and after taking him home without trying to find the owner discovers her conscience as well. Jamaica’s honest and appealing character inspired five more books, each about a childhood ethical dilemma.
Princess Truly and The Hungry Bunny Problem - Kelly Greenawalt

Princess Truly and The Hungry Bunny Problem is a picture book for children, especially girls, ages 4-8. It’s an enchanting tale about a clever, problem-solving princess with magical curly hair featuring the delightful illustrations of Amariah Rauscher.

Dancing in the Wings – Debbie Allen

Sassy is a long-legged girl who always has something to say. She wants to be a ballerina more than anything, but she worries that her too-large feet, too-long legs, and even her big mouth will keep her from her dream. When a famous director comes to visit her class, Sassy does her best to get his attention with her high jumps and bright leotard. Her first attempts are definitely not appreciated, but with Sassy’s persistence, she just might be able to win him over.

Rosa – Nikki Giovanni
Fifty years after her refusal to give up her seat on a Montgomery, Alabama, city bus, Mrs. Rosa Parks is still one of the most important figures in the American civil rights movement. This tribute to Mrs. Parks is a celebration of her courageous action and the events that followed.


Ruby Bridges Goes to School: My True Story – Ruby Bridges

The extraordinary true story of Ruby Bridges, the first African-American child to integrate a New Orleans school–now with simple text for young readers!


White Socks Only – Evelyn Coleman

In the segregated south, a young girl thinks that she can drink from a fountain marked “Whites Only” because she is wearing her white socks.

Moses: When Harriet Tubman Led Her People to Freedom -  Carole Boston Weatherford

This poetic book is a resounding tribute to Tubman’s strength, humility, and devotion. With proper reverence, Weatherford and Nelson do justice to the woman who, long ago, earned over and over the name Moses.

The Other Side – Jacqueline Woodson

Clover’s mom says it isn’t safe to cross the fence that segregates their African-American side of town from the white side where Anna lives. But the two girls strike up a friendship, and get around the grown-ups’ rules by sitting on top of the fence together.


A Sweet Smell of Roses -  Angela Johnson

There’s a sweet, sweet smell in the air as two young girls sneak out of their house, down the street, and across town to where men and women are gathered, ready to march for freedom and justice. Inspired by countless children and young adults who took a stand, two Coretta Scott King honorees offer a heart-lifting glimpse of children’s roles in the civil rights movement.

Ruth and the Green Book - Calvin Alexander Ramsey

Ruth was so excited to take a trip in her family’s new car! In the early 1950s, few African Americans could afford to buy cars, so this would be an adventure. But she soon found out that black travelers weren’t treated very well in some towns. Many hotels and gas stations refused service to black people. Daddy was upset about something called Jim Crow laws…

The Patchwork Path: A Quilt Map to Freedom - Bettye Stroud

Now that Hannah’s papa has decided to make the run for freedom, her patchwork quilt is not just a precious memento of Mama — it’s a series of hidden clues that will guide them along the Underground Railroad to Canada. A fictionalized account of a fascinating oral history, THE PATCHWORK PATH tells the story of a two of the thousands who escaped a life of slavery and made the dangerous journey to freedom — a story of courage, determination, and hope.

Tar Beach – Faith Ringgold
“Ringgold recounts the dream adventure of eight-year-old Cassie Louise Lightfoot, who flies above her apartment-building rooftop, the ‘tar beach’ of the title, looking down on 1939 Harlem. Part autobiographical, part fictional, this allegorical tale sparkles with symbolic and historical references central to African-American culture.
Second Grade to Fourth Grade

Alexandrea Petrakova Johnson does not want to be a beautiful ballerina, and she does not want to leave her friends in Apple Creek.  Unfortunately, that doesn’t stop her ballet-crazy mother from moving them to Harlem, or from enrolling Al at the Nutcracker School of Ballet.

Eight-year-old Ruby Booker is the baby sis of Marcellus (11), Roosevelt (10), and Tyner (9), the most popular boys on Chill Brook Ave. When Ruby isn’t hanging with her friend, Theresa Petticoat, she’s finding out what kind of mischief her brothers are getting into. She’s sweet and sassy and every bit as tough as her older siblings.

Reblogged from For Harriet

Black Women in Europe Meetups

March 25, 2014

Black Women in EuropeCity organizers welcomed. Plans are underway for an exclusive Black Women in Europe meet up in Vienna. Following successful meet ups in previous years in Amsterdam and London, members have called for more social networking in 2014. All details about the meet ups will be shared exclusively in our private Facebook group for women living in Europe. Be sure you are a member and join today:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/blackwomenineurope/

If you live outside of Europe join our regional group for women on both sides of the Atlantic:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/218040101623830/

(1) If anyone is interested in meeting up in either Reading or Oxford, England email:  contact@blackwomenineurope.com.

(2) If you are interested in planning a Black Women in Europe meet up in your city email:  contact@blackwomenineurope.com.

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