Sunday, May 25, 2008

A Good, Ole Fashioned Cuss Out (and one caveat)

Hillary, Hillary, Hillary... With your most recent gaff, you have successfully obliterated any prospect for a graceful exit. Your parting gift? A good ole fashioned cuss out, courtesy of Keith Olbermann.

Yes, the dramatic turns from camera to camera give me entirely too much. But, let's be clear -- this is public theatre. And theatre not to be missed.

My only qualm is this: "this nation's deepest shame, its most enduring horror, its morst terrifying legacy is political assassination".

Really, Keith? REALLY? The thousands upon thousands of enslaved Africans that lost their lives to slavery and the Middle Passage take second place to the 14 or so men that you name in your rant? Really?

Call it niggling, but methinks one really should take greater care when dolling out superlatives for the nation's "deepest shame," 'cause it strikes me that the idiom of "enduring horror" and "terrifying legacy" invokes for many Americans a system much more sinister than political assassination.

Monday, May 19, 2008

What Hope Can Do

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

facebook fun.

How do time-strapped academics have fun?
They perform self-parodic close readings, that's how.

My latest foray into the growing genre of jestful metacriticism comes by way of the facebook page of my beloved colleague and love slave Lyra Plumer. You see, Lyra posted a picture of her adorable guinea pigs to her page. It was too adorable to allow it to pass without comment, but being immersed in dissertation madness, the only language I could muster up was the heavy-handedly theoretical and jargon-laden idiom that I love so well. See for yourself and join in the jest!

" The boundless cuteness of this duo is undoubtedly owed to the image's underlying narrative of racial harmony. Though the "rare comraderie" of beings of different hues is evident throughout 20th century visual culture (see Coolidge's anthropomorphized Dogs Playing Poker series, 1903), this image is unique in that its igloo transports the subjects outside of the contiguous United States (and therefore well beyond the self-indulgent gaze of American art history) and into the otherworldly domain of Canada's Central Arctic and Greenlands Thule areas, where most igloos were erected.

In selecting an emphatically plastic replica of indigenous workmanship as the domestic retreat for this unlikely pair, this image fuzes Jameson's and Baudrillard's notion of the simulacrum. The igloo is rendered both ahistorical AND hyperreal by its capacity to serve as a site where the ever-elusive goal of racial harmony might be actualized. "


More fun after I finish grading papers and final exams, I promise. Until then, will you meet me for dinner next Thursday?

Friday, May 09, 2008

Brighter Days 4: The Awards Banquet and Afterparty

Dear friends,

It's hard to believe that we've been fighting for justice in the case of Rashawn Brazell for three years now. But the facts cannot lie: It's been three full years since 19 year-old Rashawn's dismembered body parts were found strewn though Brooklyn's subways. And three years later, the murder that America's Most Wanted has called one of the most gruesome in New York's history remains unsolved.

Luckily, there's good news. Since the inception of the Rashawn Brazell Memorial Scholarship in 2005, we've been blessed to have people like you in our corner pledging time, resources, sympathy and support for our ongoing fight against racism, homophobia and hate violence. This year, we are elated to have the opportunity to thank each of your for the myriad ways in which you've made it possible to offer a sustainable tribute to Rashawn's memory. To this end, we hope that you'll join us at our awards dinner on May 22nd. Because the evening's purpose is to show our gratitude for the unwavering support of community members like you, it simply wouldn't be complete without... you!

Hosted at the LGBT Center in Manhattan, this year’s Brighter Days celebration will honor New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, Council Member Letitia James and the Audre Lorde Project's SOS Collective for their respective efforts to end violence against LGBT people of color in our community. Additionally, we'll be recognizing the network of bloggers, activists, artists and scholars who have made invaluable contributions to our work throughout the years.

So, click here to RSVP today and let us show you our appreciation!

Will I have the pleasure of seeing you there?