make it or break it
Mad love for Huffington Posts Arts this morning! Happy Black History Month.
I was leaving the South
to fling myself into the unknown …
I was taking a part of the South
to transplant in alien soil,
to see if it could grow differently,
if it could drink of new and cool rains,
bend in strange winds,
respond to the warmth of other suns
and, perhaps, to bloom
This past weekend, I had the pleasure of hearing Isabel Wilkerson speak. A Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, Wilkerson’s The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration was the topic of the engaging lecture. The title of her book was derived from this quote by Richard Wright. It was so fittingly appropriate as Wright had been born in Mississippi and moved to Chicago as a young adult.
I was extremely motivated by her public speaking skills but her main thesis really got me to thinking about my own writing and bringing it all together. A majority (if not all) of the founding members, teachers, and artists of the SSCAC were born in Chicago to parents who had relocated from the South recently or had traveled with their families to the city at a young age. Wilkerson said many of them were forced to leave, others left for better opportunities for themselves and their children. For that reason alone, the SSCAC will always remain relevant to the black community. Art in schools continues to be stifled by budget cuts and mainstream galleries and museums have yet to fully embrace the black artist. The SSCAC continues to be a formidable and welcoming option for the black artist seeking validation.
A 1953 JET magazine cover has been circulating on Facebook. One of the headlines read “Why Lesbians Marry.” The seemingly ahead-of-its-time article, however, still reinforced a lot of stereotypes and used defamatory language. What do you make of the piece? Does JET deserve some credit for taking a stab at the topic in the 1950s? (via JET Magazine 1953 Lesbian Cover Resurfaces)