Colorism By Another Name is “Shadeism:” A Movie Coming Soon To A Film Festival Near You

Colorism By Another Name is “Shadeism:” A Movie Coming Soon To A Film Festival Near You

Hi Meltingpot Readers, Not a lot of time to write today, but I still wanted to share. Last week I had the opportunity to attend an amazing conference on colorism. It was held at Washington University in St. Louis and featured an amazing gathering of scholars from around the world who all research and/or advocate against colorism. I learned a lot. The last agenda on the conference schedule was the screening of a film by a young Canadian filmmaker named Nayani Thiyagaraja, who produced a documentary about colorism amongst her…

The Afro-Spanish Alliance: What I’m Writing Now

The Afro-Spanish Alliance: What I’m Writing Now

Hi Meltingpot Readers, So, most of you know that I’m knee deep in the research for my new book, Same Family, Different Colors. Currently I am at work on the chapter focusing on Latino families and their issues with colorism, and let me just say I feel like I’ve fallen down a Kinky Gazpacho wormhole like no other. It’s fascinating how far back the Afro-Spanish alliance stretches into the past, here in the United States, in the Caribbean, in Europe and of course, Africa. But despite the long history of…

#WomensLives Being Black in Honduras: One Woman’s Story of Longing and Belonging

#WomensLives Being Black in Honduras: One Woman’s Story of Longing and Belonging

Hi Meltingpot Readers, I am so excited that I am getting the chance to take part in an initiative to highlight the lack of focus on women and women’s issues in the news media and really in society at large. Public Radio International (PRI) has spearheaded this initiative called Across Women’s Lives and has partnered with Blogher to help get the word out. Blogher is how I get involved. My job is simple. I get to highlight all of the amazing journalism PRI and its media partners are creating that…

Hair’s the Thing: Dove’s #LoveYourCurls Campaign

Hair’s the Thing: Dove’s #LoveYourCurls Campaign

Hi Meltingpot readers, Have you seen Dove’s new #LoveYourCurls video? There aren’t any references to Dove products in the video, so it actually feels more like a public service announcement than a commercial. The main message is that little girls with curly hair want straight hair because they believe it’s more beautiful. This of course, we can assume, will be detrimental to their self-esteem and body confidence. The solution, according to the social scientists employed by Dove, is for mothers and relatives and essentially anyone who is exposed to a…

“Black and Blue and Blond:” Meditations on Color and Family

“Black and Blue and Blond:” Meditations on Color and Family

Happy New Year Meltingpot Readers! I hope all of you are looking towards a productive and positive 2015. I am. I know I kind of disappeared for the holidays, but in addition to playing Santa Claus and trying to make the season Merry and Bright, el esposo had surgery and is not allowed to walk without crutches for another four weeks. Hello single motherhood! Still, it was a great holiday filled with love and family. And speaking of family, here’s a really wonderful essay penned by the writer Thomas Chatterton…

If You’re in the Chicago Area…Check Out the Critical Mixed Race Studies Conference

If You’re in the Chicago Area…Check Out the Critical Mixed Race Studies Conference

Hi Meltingpot Readers, If any of you live in or near the Windy City, you might want to check out the Critical Mixed Race Studies Conference happening this weekend, November 13 – 15th at DePaul University in Chicago. Even though it sounds like a completely academic-y thing to do, it’s totally geared towards audiences beyond those who toil in the Ivory Tower. While many of the presenters are indeed university scholars studying the mixed race experience, there are plenty of panels featuring artists, educators, community activists and even parenting experts….

An Adorable Children’s Book That Tackles the Color Complex

An Adorable Children’s Book That Tackles the Color Complex

Hi Meltingpot Readers, I think you all know I’m working on a book about colorism in families and right now I’m in the research phase. That means I’m deep diving into all thing colorism related, specifically how colorism manifests in African-American families (I’ll be moving on to colorism in Latino families next.). So, imagine my great delight in stumbling upon this wonderful children’s book called, Same Difference by Calida Garcia Rawles. The book is about two little brown cousins, one dark and one light, who learn a positive lesson about…

Passing (is) Strange … And Makes for Fascinating Reading

Passing (is) Strange … And Makes for Fascinating Reading

Hello Meltingpot Readers, There’s probably nothing revolutionary or even that revelatory in a new book out on passing called, A Chosen Exile by Stanford professor of American History, Allyson Hobbs, but still, I’m dying to read it. Why, because the very concept of passing, of leaving behind a life and family, shedding one’s cultural history and starting over with a new racial identity is just so fascinating. Really, it seems like the plot of a great mystery series, but in fact, as Hobbs suggests, it was so commonplace that the…