BOOK: Cooper on Slavery and Resistance in Montreal

Discovered this today. Just waiting for the right time to dive in. Wow.


Afua Cooper. The Hanging of Angelique: The Untold Story of Canadian Slavery and the Burning of Old Montreal. Athens: University of Georgia Press, 2007.

via UGA Press:

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African American Studies Program founder, Professor Adelaide Cromwell dies at 99 | African American Studies

Source: African American Studies Program founder, Professor Adelaide Cromwell dies at 99 | African American Studies

Camille Billops, Maker of Unflinching Documentary Films, Is Dead at 85 -ARTnews

Source: Camille Billops, Maker of Unflinching Documentary Films, Is Dead at 85 -ARTnews


From “Winnie” by Gwendolyn Brooks as we begin April is #PoetryMonth

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. Gone to join the ancestors. Grateful for her life and her spirit.

Kinna Reads

April is (US) National Poetry Month.  It’s been a while since I celebrated the month here at Kinna Reads and frankly, I miss it.  There is no theme to this year’s celebration. I might, uncharacteristically,  share more “upbeat” poems since the first three months of 2018 have been quite unsettling, to put it mildly.  Illness and a stream of bad news have me feeling vulnerable and unmoored. As I typed that sentence, I reminded myself that sad poetry can be  sweet and haunting. I’m just going to have fun this month. I’ll be reading at least one poem a day and will post poetry here throughout April. Old favourites and new discoveries.

The above is the first paragraph of a post I scheduled to go live today. I was going to kickoff #PoetryMonth with “May this be a House of Joy” by Lucille Clifton.  But yesterday, April 2nd, brought news…

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Madam Walker’s 1917 Convention: Entrepreneurship & Protest Politics

On the 100th Anniversary of the NAACP’s Silent Protest March against racial injustice in New York City, I want to share the words of Madam C.J. Walker, who, although more well known for her business acumen, was a staunch, outspoken advocate for civil rights: “This is the greatest country under the sun, but we must not let our love of country, our patriotic loyalty cause us to abate one whit in our protest against wrong and injustice. We should protest, until the American sense of justice is so aroused that such affairs as the East St. Louis race riot be forever impossible.” Madame C.J. Walker, exhorting her agents to support the Silent Protest Parade, July 28th, 1917.  Walker served on the NAACP organizing committee for the march.


Madam Walker/A'Lelia Walker Family Archives

On August 31, 1917, Madam C. J. Walker hosted the first national convention of her Walker “beauty culturists” at Philadelphia’s Union Baptist Church. More than 200 women from all over the United States gathered to learn about sales, marketing and management at what was one of the earliest professonal gatherings of American women entrepreneurs.

Walker–who founded her Madam C. J. Walker Manufacturing Company during the spring of 1906 in Denver after marrying her third husband, Charles Joseph “C.J.” Walker, earlier that year–had first begun selling hair care products in St.

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A Prayer To Deliver Us From Mediocre White Men

Can I get an AMEN?!


Dear Mother Father Everything God,

Please Deliver us from mediocre white men.

Normally, I would believe that to be a powerful enough prayer but Uncle was a real down home praying Pastor and he taught us to be very specific in our prayer. He spoke about the time he prayed for you to keep death in front of him and next thing he knew people all around him were dying left and right. It is with that in mind that I come to you with this very specific prayer. A petition so powerful that it would shake the foundation our lives and world.

Lawd, this trifling, scallywag of a man Bill O’Reilly had the nerve to come for our church auntie Maxine Waters. Lawd, he had the nerve to try and ruin her good name and credit by disrespecting her crown in glory. Now we know fatha that Bill O’Reilly…

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This newly discovered photo of Harriet Tubman Gives me LIFE.


OMG. This is everything. Harriet Tubman as a young woman. Looking like a boss. No. Correction: She WAS THE ORIGINAL BOSS. Look at her. Looking beautiful and strong and sporting something sexy. I LOVE THIS SO MUCH!!!!!



“Space:Queens” – Damali “The Glitter Priestess” Abrams — Aker: Futuristically Ancient

Hello! Welcome back to my Astro-Caribbean series with a double dose of Space:Queens for you! Last week, I had artist Shervone Neckles and now I present to you Damali Abrams! Damali is a talented visual artist, writer and herbalist, who is using her talents to help to heal the world. Enjoy my interview with […]

via “Space:Queens” – Damali “The Glitter Priestess” Abrams — Aker: Futuristically Ancient

African Culture in Toni Morrison’s Song of Solomon

Toni Morrison, griot extraordinaire. Wonderful essay by Ben Wilkerson about how she honors our cultural connections in her writing.

Essays of a Young Philologist

African-American literature is a very young subset of literature, considering that Western literature has been around at least since the days of Beowulf in the early Middle Ages. Even though it is quite young, African American literature has many complexities due to its relation to race issues, poverty, and its connection with Africa. As its name designates, there is a certain aura of “African-ness” to this type of literature. Toni Morrison published Song of Solomon in 1977 during a time when race issues were still heightened throughout the United States. It would appear that as Morrison wrote this work, she considered a potent question: “Have I made a whole world and led you through it toward a new comprehension of our life and time, maybe all human history?” (Price x). While it is certainly true that this novel describes a torn and strife filled life of African Americans, there is…

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