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Apr. 25th, 2010 | 02:33 pm
posted by: petrichor_fizz in ms_anthropology

Hi all - I finally wrote a post on my long-abandoned blog - it's essentially a response to David Wong's 'Monkeysphere' article for Cracked (which is about three years old, but I only just read it), although I go off on a bit of an angry feminist tangent at the end.

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Talking back to the Empire

Aug. 29th, 2007 | 09:23 pm
posted by: shewhohashope in ms_anthropology

From Mogadishu to Rexdale and back again
By K’NAAN


When I was in high school, the cold month of February passed without my taking much notice. The few lovable students who were political and knew the names of their local MPs organized cultural events. Some of the teachers who pretended to seriously mull over the contributions of blacks in the civil rights movement showed grainy videos of Martin Luther King rallies.

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I haven't updated in a while, and looking over the posts to the community, there's a definite bias towards black and or African issues. I'd like to see some variety, so I'll remind you that anyone is free to post at any time anything that they feel is relevant. And it doesn't have to be articles, I'm just being lazy. Eventually I'll write some of my own thoughts down.

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Straightening Our Hair

Aug. 14th, 2007 | 09:40 pm
posted by: shewhohashope in ms_anthropology

bell hooks from Z September 1988

On Saturday mornings we would gather in the kitchen to get our hair fixed, that is straightened. Smells of burning grease and hair, mingled with the scent of our freshly washed bodies, with collard greens cooking on the stove, with fried fish. We did not go to the hairdresser. Mama fixed our hair. Six daughters—there was no way we could have afforded hairdressers. In those days, this process of straightening black women’s hair with a hot comb (invented by Madame C. J. Waler) was not connected in my mind with the effort to look white, to live out standards of beauty set by white supremacy. It was connected solely with rites of initiation into womanhood. To arrive at that point where one’s hair could be straightened was to move from being perceived as child (whose hair could be neatly combed and braided) to being almost a woman. It was this moment of transition my sisters and I longed for.

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Africans to Bono: 'For God's sake please stop!'

Jul. 28th, 2007 | 07:19 pm
posted by: shewhohashope in ms_anthropology

By Jennifer Brea Tuesday, July 3, 2007
It's time to let Africa imagine its own future.


Arusha, Tanzania–Africa is a continent of despair and desperation. Here, eight year-olds toting AK-47s massacre whole villages and eccentric dictators feast on the organs of the opposition, believing it'll boost their mojo. Tsetse flies nibble on the eyelids of starving children who sport distended bellies like it's their birthright, not to mention the fact that by the time you finish reading this article, another six Africans will die from malaria, five from AIDS, and seventeen from poverty and hunger. Also, the wildlife is beautiful and the people like to dance and sing.

That's Africa, and it's in desperate need of our help. Luckily, a few enlightened megastars from America and Europe have come to save it.

Curiously, not all the natives are grateful.

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Jennifer Brea is a Beijing-based freelance writer who blogs at Africabeat. She is currently researching a book on China's involvement in Africa and Africa's impact on China.

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Caught on CCTV: the police sergeant who said Somalian needed 'a good beating'

Jul. 17th, 2007 | 12:18 pm
posted by: shewhohashope in ms_anthropology

· Scotland Yard caught up in new race row
· Community worker derided as 'low life'

Diane Taylor and Hugh Muir
Saturday July 7, 2007
The Guardian


By the time Fahmi Hassan was settled into his police cell, having been accused of assaulting a police officer, the atmosphere was highly charged.

His request for a cigarette was rejected out of hand as was his attempt to plead his case with a senior officer. The exchanges were sharp if predictable.

But this week the case of Fahmi Hassan plunged Scotland Yard into a race row as previously confidential surveillance tapes emerged revealing what officers were saying privately about the Somalian youth worker as he languished in his cell.

On the tape, which the Guardian has seen, one clearly agitated supervisory officer says Mr Hassan has "lots of wants, lots of needs, lots of arrogance; nothing a good beating wouldn't put right. Knows his rights, knows the law."

The 23-year-old British born community worker is derided as an "arrogant shit" and an "obnoxious Somalian".

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Recent Guardian Articles on Race in the UK
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BBC Articles on Transnational Adoption

Jul. 16th, 2007 | 12:39 pm
posted by: shewhohashope in ms_anthropology

Our lone twin from China
By Jane Ashley and Emily Buchanan
BBC Radio 4's China Girl


Soon after bringing this little girl home from a Chinese orphanage, her British parents proudly posted photos of her online - only for it to reveal that she has an identical twin sister, also adopted abroad.

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Child and prejudice
By Richard Allen Greene
BBC News



Emily Buchanan found herself without a ready reply on one of her first trips to a local playground with her newly-adopted daughter, Jade.

"Is her father Chinese?" another mother asked as she pushed her own toddler on a swing alongside Buchanan and Jade.

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Way of the Ninjabi!

Jul. 7th, 2007 | 10:30 pm
posted by: shewhohashope in ms_anthropology

More and more Muslim women are taking up martial arts. Is it because they are under increased attack? Sara Wajid attends a Ninjabi class to find out.

Friday June 15, 2007
The Guardian

In a grim part of east London a powerful Somalian teen is giving me a beating while a friend eggs her on - they are both clearly enjoying themselves. As the blows rain down, I curse myself for responding to the advert for this unusual self-defence class at a Newham sports centre. "From the mean streets of London," it had read, "where Islamophobic attacks from chavs, hoodies and pervy so-called Muslim men have become increasingly common ... it's time our sisters stood up and defended their honour! Enter the Ninjabi."

Ninjabi is a play on the word hijabis - women who wear hijab. This six-week self-defence course for Muslim women was set up by a community group, Islamic Circles, in response to a growing demand for women-only classes and has attracted attention throughout the Muslim world. There are plans for follow-up courses, most titled in homage to Bruce Lee: Return of the Ninjabi, Way of the Ninjabi and (more Newham than Hong Kong) Ninjabi vs Minicabi.

Attending the class on a drizzly Saturday afternoon I find 30 young women jumping around energetically - the jilbab-wearers floating like black butterflies as they spar and dodge. The women are a mixture of young, British Asian mothers in M&S tracksuits and students in hijab'n'hoodie combos. One strikingly cool young woman could be the poster girl: her large, kohl-rimmed eyes are accentuated by the jet-black headscarf she's wearing, and the elaborate symbol emblazoned on the back of her matching hoodie is in Arabic script. "May Allah protect me from Satan," it reads.

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· For more information go to ninjabi.net

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Black Mental Health, UK

Jul. 6th, 2007 | 03:03 pm
posted by: shewhohashope in ms_anthropology

BMH: Faith and human rights groups pin hopes on House of Lords debate to tackle racist Mental Health Bill

The troubled 2006 Mental Health Bill will be debated in the House of Lords this afternoon with the major concerns of race equality and faith groups still unresolved.


A last minute meeting with Health minister, Lord Hunt, church leaders and campaigns groups Black Mental Health UK, late last week, over plans to allow forced treatment within the community have still not been addressed.

Department of Health officials confirmed that the criteria for getting on or off a CTO (community treatment order) would be similar to begin sectioned and forecasted that three thousand people would be likely to end up on them in the first five years.

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Wanted: A human rights lawyer to challenge the ‘racist’ Mental Health Bill

Peers lacked vital information needed to make an informed decision

The debate in the House of Lords earlier this week on the highly contested Mental Hill Bill lacked vital information from the CRE, but ended with a call for a legal challenge to be mounted, on account of the Bill’s failure to meet the legal requirements of Race Relations laws.


A controversial aspect of the Bill is the proposed introduction of Community Treatment Orders (CTOs) which would allow forced treatment within the community. Department of Health officials confirmed that the criteria for getting on or off a CTO would be similar to being sectioned and forecasted that three thousand people could end up on CTOs within the first five years.

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What We Call Peace is Little Better Than Capitulation To a Corporate Coup

Jul. 3rd, 2007 | 09:12 pm
posted by: shewhohashope in ms_anthropology

Article by Arundhati Roy


This is an edited extract from the 2004 Sydney Peace Prize lecture delivered by Arundhati Roy at the Seymour Center.

Sometimes there's truth in old cliches. There can be no real peace without justice. And without resistance there will be no justice. Today, it is not merely justice itself, but the idea of justice that is under attack.

The assault on vulnerable, fragile sections of society is so complete, so cruel and so clever that its sheer audacity has eroded our definition of justice. It has forced us to lower our sights, and curtail our expectations. Even among the well-intentioned, the magnificent concept of justice is gradually being substituted with the reduced, far more fragile discourse of "human rights".

Almost unconsciously, we begin to think of justice for the rich and human rights for the poor. Justice for the corporate world, human rights for its victims. Justice for Americans, human rights for Afghans and Iraqis. Justice for the Indian upper castes, human rights for Dalits and Adivasis (if that.) Justice for white Australians, human rights for Aborigines and immigrants (most times, not even that.)Collapse )

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