The New Dave Chappelle?

Posted Leave a commentPosted in #BlackLivesMatter, Artists, Black Resistance Screening List

Oakland-based Brontez Purnell draws from a mash-up of comedic styles that’s one part In Living Color, two parts Chappelle Show and one part Golden Girls. The result is brilliant satire influence by a distinctly gender fluid, Queer positive and Black perspective. Check out his short film for the Visual AIDS project, The 100 Boyfriends Mixtape (The Demo). 

 

100 Boyfriends Mixtape (The Demo) by Brontez Purnell for Day With(out) Art 2017 from Visual AIDS on Vimeo.

When They Ask To Touch Your Hair, AGAIN

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Activists, Allies, Artists, Authors, Field Notes, Parents, Prisoners, Scholars

Many of us women, people of color, and members of the LGBT+ community dread these first few days of the new year. The prospect of returning to campuses, nonprofits or companies where we are isolated, harassed, and blocked from success can be disheartening. In my own life, discrimination fanned the flames of doubt and shame I internalized through living in a society where I rarely saw anyone who looked like me-or loved like me-enjoy professional success.

If you’re steeling yourself against microaggressions, mansplaining, or other inappropriate discriminatory behavior, remember two things.

1. It’s Not You.

Discrimination is not something you can prevent with professional excellence, code switching expertise, or fitting into racial or gendered norms of behavior. It is driven solely by perpetrators’ allegiance to White supremacist, sexist and/or homophobic beliefs. (Whether that allegiance is subconscious is not your concern). Discrimination is illegal precisely because it has nothing to do with your actions.

2. You Are Not Alone.

Chances are you are not the only person at your campus or organization that desires a more inclusive atmosphere. To the extent that your feedback is solicited or you have decision-making authority about diversity-related programs, suggesting more trainings and cultural events might jumpstart the constructive conversations about equality and inclusion your organization needs.

I am hopeful for progress. The more we speak up, the swifter change will come. Happy New Year.

Yours in Solidarity,

RJH PhD

LGBT Mag Critiques 9 GRAMS Play

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Activists, Allies, Artists, Authors, Parents, Prisoners, Scholars

The pioneering LGBT magazine The Advocate called 9 GRAMS “heartfelt and often humorous” in a glowing review of the play that appears in both its print and online publications. Writer David Artavia explains playwright Maisha Yearwood “has written a brutally honest and poignant one-woman play…putting on full display the ugly truth of what it means to be a targeted Black lesbian American traveling and living abroad.” Peep the full review here.

Go to 9GRAMS.com more information about the next performance of 9 GRAMS.

9 GRAMS at the Inkwell

Steps from the famed Inkwell Beach on Martha’s Vineyard, prize-winning playwright Maisha Yearwood performs a reading of her work 9 GRAMS. Based on a true story, this surprisingly funny play follows Hollywood screenwriter Ayeesha Freeman as she endures solitary confinement in a Turkish prison because of how she looks and who she loves. A Q&A with Maisha will follow the performance. Sponsored by Oak Bluffs Public Library.

9 GRAMS at National Black Theatre Festival

The legendary National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, North Carolina welcomes 9 GRAMS to its Readers Series. Award-Winning playwright Maisha Yearwood will read her work about a Hollywood screenwriter who endures solitary confinement in a Turkish prison after being racially profiled as a drug trafficker. Based on a true story.