1001streamsofblackness

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The title of this section is stolen from the book “Black Cool. One thousand streams of Blackness” by Rebecca Walker in which a broad variety of black authors interpret the notion of black cool via their own experiences. 1001 streams of … tries to explore both ‘black’ and ‘white’ and brings shades of color to this bi-polar identity through race.

1001 streams of blackness

James Brown & ‘Your bad self’

James Brown advertising mystery of black — found online James Brown advertising mystery of black — found online

1001 streams of blackness

C

Encyclopedia of —isms

Creolization

“Creolization is the process in which Creole cultures emerge in the New World. As a result of colonization there was a mixture between people of indigenous, African, and European descent, which came to be understood as Creolization. Creolization is traditionally used to refer to the Caribbean; although not exclusive to the Caribbean it can be further extended to represent other diasporas. The mixing of people brought a cultural mixing which ultimately led to the formation of new identities. It is important to emphasize that Creolization also is the mixing of the “old” and “traditional,” with the “new” and “modern.” Furthermore, creolization occurs when participants actively select cultural elements that may become part of or inherited culture. Robin Cohen states that Creolization is a condition in which “the formation of new identities and inherited culture evolve to become different from those they possessed in the original cultures,” and then creatively merge these to create new varieties that supersede the prior forms.”

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1001 streams of blackness

B

Encyclopedia of —isms

Black

The capitalized Black vs lowercase white:

“I have chosen to capitalize the word “Black” and lowercase “white” throughout this book. I believe “Black” constitutes a group, an ethnicity equivalent to African-American, Negro, or, in terms of a sense of ethnic cohesion, Irish, Polish, or Chinese. I don’t believe that whiteness merits the same treatment. Most American whites think of themselves as Italian-American or Jewish or otherwise relating to other past connections that Blacks cannot make because of the familial and national disruptions of slavery. So to me, because Black speaks to an unknown familial/national past it deserves capitalization.” (Touré, 2011 p VII)

Touré, Who’s afraid of Post-Blackness, Free Press, 2011

“I write “Black” with a capital B because this term addresses first and foremost political and historical dimensions of the concept of Blackness, and relates only indirectly to skin complexion. The term “white”, in contrast, is not capitalised, since this would obscure the term “Black” as an act of political empowerment and as a socio-political construct.” (Adusei-Poku, 2014, p 7)

Nana Adusei-Poku, A Stake in the Unknown, Hogeschool Rotterdam Uitgeverij, 2014

1001 streams of blackness

Institutional Racism

I Can’t Breathe — LeBron James

LeBron James wears ‘I CAN’T BREATHE’ tees

1001 streams of blackness

B

Encyclopedia of —isms

Black Cool

Cool = control, transcendental balance, moderation in coldness, unruffled, nonchalant, imperturbable, detached, High degree of self-control, aloofness

The concept of cool is a “West African/Afro-American metaphor of moral easthetics accomplishment” (R. Farris Thompson).

Primary methaphoric extension is …”control, having the value of composure in the individual context, social stability in the context of the group. […] Put another way, coolness has to do with transcendental balance.”

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1001 streams of blackness

Black Identity Challenging the “One-Drop” Rule

Brandon Stanford – “African American”

“My consciousness never really allowed me to think of myself as anything else but Black or a person of African descent. Anyone who has had the opportunity to get to know me never questions my race. They never question me being Black. Never. Regardless of my complexion. But for those who don’t necessarily know me, based on my phenotype and their perception, I’ve had some interesting experiences.”

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1001 streams of blackness

Imagined vs Real Michael Jackson

NathanWright-mj2000vsreal Left:  a photo manipulation by Nathan Wright (1983)