Dr. Ishakamusa Barashango - Portraits of an Eternal People
I’m interested in how working to change a narrative from one of trauma and victim hood to one of empowerment and boldness even in the face of stark vulnerability can transform a life positively. I am particularly focused on how speaking the truth of our individual and collective experiences as women of the diaspora can free women to live up to their potential. The African diaspora is comprised of many different women from different countries, cultures and beliefs. Some have come from war ridden countries and have experienced first hand the loss of humanity that brings, some have gone through some abandonment and trauma within families. I am more aware of issues that still plague people like FGM, domestic violence and rape. What happens to those things when they move to a different country? Are they allowed to speak of it or experience difficulties associated with past traumas in an empowering and safe space? I am aware that for a long time the narrative for African women and black women has been we are strong and it is a shameful thing to show that you are human after all. I come from a long line of strong females who you never heard a whimper from, all they showed was boldness and a can do attitude. I celebrate that. However that meant that there is a veil of silence for those women who find themselves unable to show that strength all of the time. Women who are beautiful but flawed. Strong but vulnerable. They suffer in silence. Some of them die in silence. It took a long time to see that it is strength to speak your truth without flinching. It took a long time to admit that I have bones to gather despite looking like I have it all together. I am using this space to explore the often hidden life of an African woman in the diaspora and the disconnect that can take place. I am that woman and you may be that woman. All I know is progress happens when we speak the truth and find solutions for freedom. I am both strong and vulnerable.
What is it to leave a place? What is it to question your own memory of that place? What is it to have this innate connection to a place in which you don’t live at anymore? How can you keep generating a collective and cultural memory which you know you’re very much implicated in and very much spiritually connected to but meanwhile, the connections are very frayed… but meanwhile, they are overwhelmingly strong. The poem for me becomes a way to give contour to all these provisional, competing, difficult, contestatory, generous, poignant, ridiculous notions of home, war, how do you tell a story?
—Myung Mi Kim, in Between the Lines: Asian American Women’s Poetry (2001)
This is my first ever MIA concert. I’m remembering when I first saw her music videos on IMF at 14 yrs of age and was blown away. #comingofage #desi #diaspora #music (at Riviera Theatre)
Went to East is East last night,a Afghani/Indian restaurant. It was in the epicenter of white hipsters. The waitress were all white, the food was bland, and greatly modified to be “healthy” for the “organic” crazed hipsters. The menu had the word exotic all over. I sat on the chair with traditional coverings and pillow. Ones I remember siting at my grandparent’s home. I looked at the ceiling, wood. I forgot how much the fabric would scratch you.
I felt like a child again
I looked at the painting on the wall, and there it was.
a picture of a white women with
a tattooed arm,
and that earthy “spiritual” clothing,
at yellow faceless silhouettes of people playing traditional instruments.
the white gaze.
she had a face. they did not. they were just yellow. the instruments had more details. I wish I could have burnt the place down.
The stage #art was the best part. #miamatangi #music #desi #diaspora (at Riviera Theatre)
Homebound. Had so many good bad sad angry feelings at the MIA show in Uptown. Conclusion: Watching her music on YouTube sans the ignorant American hipster culture at her shows seems more do-able. #desi #diaspora #timetojournal (at CTA - Belmont)
the english word whatever is not a good substitute for bahala na
Did you know green cards are actually green?
The well-worn, multi-folded form that stuck
Through the back of my mother’s wallet
Like a red letter like a brand forever pressed
To her throat pointing like
A here I am here I am neon sign, a giant arrow
Above her head glinting the truth.
Green-eyed, green-papered, monster like money
Under her fingernails and tracking mud into the store.
The lady stares at her accent, looks at her hands,
Glares at her third eye, shining angry red in the middle
Of her forehead before handing over what my
Grandmother paid for.
Her sari doesn’t get under her feet, but it still trips
The clerk up.
Did you know green cards are actually green?
Envious and hopeful and dreaming.
These little resolute papers, easily mistaken
For a future, for food, for lineages and lines
Of descendants stretching out to university,
To law school, to six figure salaries and 401ks,
Spell out in clear letters “permanent resident.”
What that means is “here for always.”
What they mean is “stuck.”
Korean Immigration to Mexico
In 1905, more than 1033 Korean people departed from the port located in Chemulpo (also known as Incheon), South Korea hoping to improve their lives.
More than 300 entries in African Folklore recognize “significant historical and cultural experiences” shared among the wide variety of African cultures, including the diaspora. This encyclopedia offers substantive (averaging about three pages) signed articles, each with references. Sample topics include Dreams, Films on African folklore, Metallurgy and folklore, and articles on oral communication types like jokes, riddles, tongue twisters, call-and-response, songs, theater, and more. There are also brief surveys of African countries. Entries reflect the editors’ broad concept of folklore as artistic communication inclusive of a variety of expressive behaviors and communicating media and of folklore’s existing “primarily to provide group identity and homogeneity.” An extensive index and cross-references are helpful navigation aids in addition to the list of entries that begins the encyclopedia. Appendixes—“African Studies Centers and Libraries in the USA and Africa,” a bibliography of the Field and Broadcast Sound Recording Collections at the Indiana University Archives of Traditional Music, a filmography, and a partial listing of dissertations and theses on African folklore at four U.S. universities—also add value. The list of contributors includes academic or other institutional affiliation for most of the 161 authors, who come from a variety of subject areas and countries.
La Respuesta magazine (larespuestamedia.com) proudly announce our FIRST networking event in New York City, at the iconic Camaradas El Barrio. Featuring eclectic rhythms by DJ Christian Mártir, the event is an opportunity for staff and supporters to directly engage our readers in a festive spirit typical of the Nuyorican experience. We hope to gain feedback on the publication and increase our foothold in “Nueva Yol’s” long-standing Boricua Diaspora community.
The event, titled ¿Qué Pasa, NYC?, is the second “meet & greet” organized by La Respuesta (the first took place in our Chicago base) and will be followed by more “¿Qué Pasa?” events around the country. Limited edition stickers and buttons will be given away; and donations will be solicited to support the grassroots publication.
Who: La Respuesta magazine
What: Public networking event with music, food, dance, drink, and free giveaways
Where: Camaradas El Barrio, 2241 1st Avenue @ 115th Street in New York City
When: Saturday, May 17, 2014 at 4PM - 6PM
How much: $10 suggested donation (or whatever you got. we know la piña está agria!)
You may RSVP on Facebook, here.
By @askewone On view today @knowngallery #ASKEW #DIASPORA #KnownGallery #citrusreport
Los Que Llegaron — Chinos
En los últimos años del siglo XIX y la primera década del XX, 30 mil inmigrantes chinos de la clase trabajadora llegaron a México huyendo de la pobreza y de la inestabilidad política, procedentes del sur de China (Cantón) o de Estados Unidos. En nuestro país los chinos fueron contratados por diversas compañías estadounidenses para la construcción de vías férreas y el trabajo en minería y agricultura. Al concluir estos trabajos los estadounidenses empezaron a rechazarlos, hasta que en 1904 se emitió una ley que prohibía su entrada a aquel país, por lo que huyeron a territorio mexicano, principalmente a Baja California. Se estima que el número de jornaleros chinos que había en el valle fluctuaba entre siete y ocho mil. En esa época era tan grande la presencia e influencia de los chinos que a Mexicali se le llamaba “el pequeño Cantón” y el barrio del antiguo centro comercial de la ciudad aún es conocido como “La chinesca”.
Actualmente, en la capital residen unos 9 mil chinos, y en todo el país suman aproximadamente 14 mil chinos de ultramar y 40 mil mexicanos de origen chino, distribuidos principalmente en las ciudades de México, Tijuana, Mexicali y en el estado de Chiapas.