1. naijawomyn:

    email info@theuzo.com for more details.

     
  2. nigerianheir:

    5centsapound:

    Andrew Putter: Native Work (Capetown, South Africa)

    Gallery Statement:

    This new installation comprises 21 black-and-white photographs of contemporary black Capetonians….

    very important

    Absolutely beautiful

    (via naijawomyn)

     
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  6. dynamicafrica:

    Giving thanks to Alek Wek: The importance of a supermodel.

    I never tire of reading Alek Wek interviews. Her presence in the modelling world did wonders for my often down-trodden self-esteem whilst growing up. It still does.

    Wek, often the sole black face amidst a sea of the many white visages I’d see in the pages of the fashion magazines I became obsessed with was always greatly outnumbered. Few other black faces accompanied her on the runway and in print. Similarly, I constantly found myself in social settings comprised of the same demographics.

    Before high school, most of the schools I attended were majority white. At one particular school, I was the only black student in my year for an entire semester, and the only black girl between grades 4 and 8 for that same period of time. You can imagine what this sort of alienation did for myself esteem being in my highly impressionable and formative pre-teen and teenage years. To my non-white friends with flowing hair and skin that was either much paler than mine or at least a ‘nice kind of brown’, I represented all that was undesired in the world of beauty. I was not white, I was not mixed or exotic by any means. I was black, another synonym for plain. My skin? Too dark. My hair? Too stiff when natural. Relaxed? Not even close to what they had. And so the list went on.

    Oddly enough, you’d think I’d be somewhat relieved to see someone like Alek Wek receive the kind of seemingly positive attention she did from the fashion world. Au contraire, mon frere - at least at first. At the time, I couldn’t understand why they’d chosen her. She seemed to represent all the things that seemed wrong with blackness in the eyes of my non-black peers. Her skin? Much too dark. Her hair? Much too stiff (if she weren’t bald). And so the list went on. How, in any way, could I look to this woman as a source of inspiration when nothing about her seemed to comfortably fit the standards of beauty defined, and often confined by, whiteness? After all, these standards plagued not just my personal life, but that of the world I lived in. Why had fashion chosen her, or at least someone that looked the way she did? Was Wek chosen because she represented an anomaly in the world of beauty? Or because despite all the notions of beauty that seemed to stand against her, she defiantly refused to accept them and in doing so, redefined how we see and construct beauty and what we consider beautiful?

    Being of Dinka descent, Wek stood out physically not only from the white models that overpopulated the fashion industry, but also from the small number of black models the West had heralded both before her and during her time. Her looks seemed to make a statement, whether she liked it or not, in a world that, rather oddly, both embraced and rejected her at the same time. Where she was hired by top Haute Couture designers and graced the covers of numerous high fashion magazines, she was often a token in the fashion world and seen as exotic by the very people that claimed to celebrate her beauty.

    In all of this, I found it extremely difficult to interpret, at the time, that Alek Wek’s presence was important primarily because she was there. Not that there hadn’t been black models before her, but her particular beauty had never been celebrated in such a manner before. Whether or not the world approved of her beauty was something that didn’t matter to Alek Wek. She was visible - highly so, and she was not going anywhere. Whether I was aware of it or not, Alek Wek’s visibility was important for the reasons that made me reject not only her but myself during that time. Alek Wek was important because her presence assured people like myself that we deserved all the things we were made to believe we were not worthy of, and needed no one’s permission as proof.

    This recent Guardian interview of Alek Wek highlights so much of why Alek Wek is truly one of the most important women in the world of fashion - ever. Here’s an except that demonstrates why she’s so incredibly important and inspirational.

    Wek was born in South Sudan, arriving in London when she was 14, and was acutely aware of how different she was from the other big models of the day, women such as Kate Moss, Claudia Schiffer and Eva Herzigova; while growing up, she had no knowledge of trailblazers such as Iman and Grace Jones.

    “There was no concept of fashion and catwalk shows where I came from,” Wek says. “There were no magazines. I never saw women in makeup, or with different hairstyles. Absolutely not.” Now, she says, there are so many South Sudanese girls working as models it is not a big deal; in the late 1990s, she was one of very few successful African models. “There were black models, but no one as dark-skinned, and none with Dinka features, that’s for sure.” Even so, she was regularly mistaken for Naomi Campbell, an entirely different-looking model from Streatham with a Jamaican-born mother. She laughs at the ridiculousness: “A black woman is not ‘a type’. I never had any interest in those jobs that asked for only black girls. What the hell is that? Would you be comfortable saying you wanted only white girls, or Latin? Are you kidding me? It’s baffling.”

    At a time when black models were considered commercially more viable if their hair was relaxed, their complexions light, Wek (very dark skin, cropped natural hair) was confident of her value. I have interviewed many models and, without fail, when asked if they always knew they were beautiful, each of them has given me a look of mock horror before going on to list their unsightly features as a child: big feet, too tall, gawky features. But when I ask Wek, she immediately replies, “Oh yes, of course.”

    (Read more of the original article ‘Alek Wek: ‘You don’t have to go with the Crowd’)

    Connect with Dynamic Africa on:

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    All Africa, All the time.

     
  7. gayscifiguy:

    Afrofuturism appreciation post

    (via afrofuturistaffair)

     
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  9. schomburgcenter:

    Before 5: Marjorie Eliot | Wednesday, April 23, 2014 | 2:00-3:30 PM

    Enjoy an afternoon of jazz with Marjorie Eliot, the woman behind the legendary Harlem parlor concerts. The performance will be followed by a conversation with Eliot and a special guest. 

    To rsvp for this free event, click here

     
  10. iknowwhythesongbirdsings:

    scienceyoucanlove:

    10 Black Scientists You Should Know

    by 

    1. Ernest Everett Just

    In 1916, Ernest Everett Just became the first black man to earn a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in experimental embryology, but perhaps his greatest legacy is the sheer amount of scientific papers he authored during his career.

    Just was born in 1883 and raised in Charleston, S.C., where he knew from an early age he was headed for college. He studied zoology and cell development at Dartmouth College in Hanover, N.H., and worked as a biochemist studying cells at Woods Hole Marine Biological Laboratory in Massachusetts. He became a biology instructor at Howard University before finishing his Ph.D., and would spend 20 summers also working at Woods Hole. From 1920 to 1931 he was awarded a biology fellowship by the National Research Council. Just pioneered research into cell fertilization, division, hydration and the effects of carcinogenic radiation on cells.

    Frustrated that no major American university would hire him because of racism, Just relocated to Europe in 1930. Once there, he wrote the bulk of his 70 professional papers, as well as two books. He died of pancreatic cancer in 1941 [sources: BiographyGeneticsGwinnet County Public Schools].

    2. Patricia Bath

    Patricia Bath improved the vision of generations thanks to her invention for cataract treatment.

    Born in 1942, Bath’s educational achievements began early. She graduated high school in only two years, then earned a bachelor’s degree from Hunter College and a medical degree from Howard University before accepting an ophthalmology fellowship at Columbia University. It was during this fellowship that Bath’s research uncovered some staggering statistics: When compared with her other patients, blacks were eight times more likely to develop glaucoma and twice as likely to go blind from it. She set her sights on developing a process to increase eye care for people unable to pay, now called community ophthalmology, which operates worldwide. Bath became the first African-American to complete a residency in ophthalmology in 1973, and the first woman to join the ophthalmology department at UCLA in 1975.

    By 1981, Bath was hard at work on her most notable invention, a laser probe that precisely treated cataracts with less pain to the patient. Using the laserphaco probe she devised, she was able to restore sight to patients who had been blind for as long as 30 years. In 1988, she became the first black female doctor to receive a patent for a medical purpose. Since her retirement in 1993, Bath continues to advocate for the medically underserved and has focused on the use of technology to offer medical services in remote regions [source: Biography].

    3. Marie Maynard Daly

    Marie Maynard Daly was a pioneer in the study of the effects of cholesterol and sugar on the heart and the first black woman to earn a Ph.D. in chemistry in the United States. She was born in 1921, at a time when minority women often were denied educational and employment opportunities, but she didn’t allow prejudice to stop her pursuit of the sciences. By 1942, she had earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry with honors from Queens College in New York. She went on to complete a master’s degree, also in chemistry, just one year later.

    It was while earning her doctoral degree from Columbia University that Daly’s research really began to gel. She discovered how internally produced compounds help digestion and spent much of her career as a professor researching cell nuclei. Importantly, she discovered the link between high cholesterol and clogged arteries, which helped advance the study of heart disease. She also studied the effects of sugar on arteries, and cigarette smoking on lung tissue. Daly established a scholarship fund for black students at Queens College in 1988. She died in 2003 [sources: African-American Pioneers in ScienceChemical Heritage Foundation].

    4. David Harold Blackwell

    David Harold Blackwell was one of the world’s most notable statisticians, but as a child he didn’t particularly like math. That was until he met the right teacher who opened a numerical world to him.

    Blackwell, born in 1919, grew up in southern Illinois and by 16 was enrolled at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. At 22, he graduated from his home state university with a doctoral degree in mathematics and then studied at Princeton. Although Blackwell aspired to a teaching position, racial bias closed doors; he was denied posts at Princeton and at the University of California at Berkeley. However, he was offered a position at Howard University. (Berkeley later offered Blackwell a teaching job, and he became the university’s first black tenured professor in 1954).

    While at Howard, Blackwell studied game theory and how it applied to decision-making in the government and private sectors during summers at RAND Corp. He became the United States’ leading expert on the subject, authoring a widely respected textbook on game theory, as well as research that resulted in several theorems named for him. One such theory, which explains how to turn rough guesses into on-target estimates, is known as the Rao-Blackwell theorem and remains an integral part of modern economics. In 1965, he became the first African-American to be inducted into the National Academy of Sciences. He died in 2010 [sources: SandersSorkin].

    read more

    Awesome post!!! Pay it forward!!!!

    (via obey-lo)