Capitalism Was a Source of My Childhood Trauma

In many radical Black and Brown spaces on the Internet, I’ve seen many people pose the question “What radicalized you?” And, for some time, I could not bring myself to give anything close to a direct answer. When relating the struggle for African liberation to our personal lives, many of us have our own stories or narratives that push us forward into the realm of consciousness, especially when having to do with both race and class. However, for some of us (like myself), it may have taken a while to understand how the latter is connected to the former.  Growing . . .

Eldridge Cleaver with members of the Black Panther Party

Lessons from Eldridge Cleaver and the Black Panther Party

“Revolutionary or Death” is the 2020 biography written about former Black Panther Party (BPP) Minister of Information Leroy “Eldridge” Cleaver.  The book was written by Justin Clifford.   Eldridge Cleaver without question was an enigmatic figure within the BPP and Clifford attempts to use this biography to show a balanced view of Eldridge Cleaver as insightful and talented while also displaying Cleaver’s brutality and ruthlessness. Most people engaged in studying the history of African liberation movements in general and the BPP in particular already have some understanding of the contradictions within the BPP.  Eldridge personified those contradictions.  On the positive . . .

A group of Black women.

Let Go of the Idea of the ‘Strong Black Woman’

I have seen too many of us who wanted to be a “strong Black woman” so badly that we denied ourselves the pleasure of emotional acknowledgment, refusing to accept we needed help in the name of such “strength.” This fallacy of strength attached to Blackness diminishes our well-being and hurts us more than it empowers us. . . .

Feminism & Women’s Liberation Are Not Imperialist

In modern-day politics, figures such as Meghan Markle, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Michelle Obama, and Kamala Harris are seen as heroes of our times who have overcome the odds in order to make the world a better place for women everywhere. By taking up space in male-dominated settings, they are sending the message that they’re a force to be reckoned with. Powerful. Commanding. In control. However, this doesn’t automatically mean that they’re making progress on behalf of women everywhere. . . .

African women gathered in a front of a banner that says "Women's liberation"

Africana Womanism vs. Black Feminism

Africana Womanism and Black Feminism are two different approaches that attempt to redefine and contextualize the experiences of African/Black women. Though both of these ideologies underscore Black women’s experiences, the principles and methods of these two approaches differ and sometimes conflict. . . .

An African woman resists the police at anti-Museveni protests in Uganda

Extending the Imagination of African Gender Thought

African women combat unique oppression. Cisheteropatriarchy, racial capitalism, colorism, and so forth. However, there are specific historical and cultural realities many African women exist within that are distinct to continental African women. . . .

A flyer on a telephone pole warning folks in Austin, Texas about Brandon Darby, a onetime leftist activist who eventually became an FBI informant.

Why Misogynists Make Great Informants

This piece on gender violence in social justice movements was originally published in make/shift magazine’s Spring/Summer 2010 issue and written by Courtney Desiree Morris. In January 2009, activists in Austin, Texas, learned that one of their own, a white activist named Brandon Darby, had infiltrated groups protesting the Republican National Convention (RNC) as an FBI informant. Darby later admitted to wearing recording devices at planning meetings and during the convention. He testified on behalf of the government in the February 2009 trial of two Texas activists who were arrested at the RNC on charges of making and possessing Molotov cocktails, . . .

Community Control of Police v Defunding Police: Addressing the Patriarchal Roots of Policing

Community Control for who? We still have too many hierarchies and contradictions within the Black community to ensure a subset of people with police power would not replicate the same violent institution power. The problem with policing is not who controls it or who can enforce its protocols. The problem with policing is that policing is inherently violent and always patriarchal. Campaigns like #sayhername (though co-opted/erased/reduced to now include #sayhisname) was a recognition that non-cishet men experience police violence. The violence may not be out in the open or in the streets, recording on a cell phone, or public in . . .