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Archive for June, 2008

Yep, we’re gonna kick it old school for this last one… there were way too many to pick from … so this may just roll over into July.

Stevie Wonder – Don’t You Worry ‘Bout a Thing

Marvin Gaye – What’s Going On

Martha Reeves and the Vandellas – Dancing in the Street

Martha and the Vandellas – Jimmie Mack

Al Green – Take Me to the River

Al Green – I’m So Tired of Being Alone

Gladys Knight & The Pips – Midnight Train to Georgia

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Please go over to Womanist Musings to read about the Saartjie Project, a collective of artists and activists using community theater to explore politics around the black female body.

In the 19th century, Saartjie Baartman, a Khosian woman who became known as the “Hottentot Venus” was put on exhibit in Europe as a freak of nature because of her greatly enlarged buttocks (due to a medical condition) and elongated labia, but also as a representative of black women’s supposedly freakish bodies. While alive, profits were made off of her exhibition, although she had to fight to receive a mere portion of the money being made off of her very flesh. Baartman died in 1815, yet her skeleton, brain and genitals remained on display in a Paris museum until 1974. Her remains were finally returned to South Africa in 2002.

Re: above illustration….Several prints dating from the early nineteenth century illustrate the sensation generated by the spectacle of “The Hottentot Venus.” A French print entitled “La Belle Hottentot,” for example, depicts the Khosian woman standing with her buttocks exposed on a box-like pedestal. Several figures bend straining for a better look, while a male figure at the far right of the image even holds his seeing-eye glass up to better behold the woman’s body. The European observers remark on the woman’s body: “Oh! God Damn what roast beef!” and “Ah! how comical is nature.”

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Okay, wow.

Just…wow.

Edited to add: So now there’s this.

Edited again to add CNN’s take (kind of a stupid one, though).

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Happy Pride 2008

To those who participated, those who wanted to but couldn’t, and those who will next time…

Via this dear friend:

Happy Pride Parade 2008

In the name of Peace and Pride
On behalf of The Holy, who is our Divine Beloved
Because WE are Holy
We march today

For those who cannot march
For those who have marched before
For those who have no idea that anyone can march
We march today

For you, if you would like
For ourselves
For the intersection of the sacred and the profane
We march today

To honor the past
To change the future
To live in the present
We march today

Also – check this out.

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Garden blogging….

Gone a couple of days and before we left, the tomato plants were all blossoms:

Get back today to see a couple of these (just a little bigger than a quarter):

We’ll be gone next week, so it looks like neighbors/pet sitters might enjoy the first tomatoes. This guy, however, is getting consumed today:

And yes, you may look all innocent right now, Mr. Squash Blossom…. but we know you and your kind intend to take over the world in several weeks:

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Oooh, a tag.

The guidelines:

List seven songs you are into right now. No matter what the genre, whether they have words, or even if they’re not any good, but they must be songs you’re really enjoying now, shaping your spring summer. Post these instructions in your blog along with your seven songs. Then tag seven other people to see what they’re listening to.

This is corny and obvious, but I love it. When the radio starts playing this one (yeah, I still listen to the radio) summer is here. And remember that Will Smith? With the fade?

Will Smith and DJ Jazzy Jeff – Summertime

Apparently, there’s something about girls and guitars (and fiddles, etc.) that I really like. Checking my itunes revealed I’ve been playing the mess out of these three….

Indigo Girls – Closer to Fine

Tracy Chapman – Baby Can I Hold You

Dixie Chicks – Sin Wagon

And guys with guitars… who sing about cooking rice in the microwave and being long in the tooth…

Travis Tritt

This is just… well…

Me’Shell Ndegeocello – Dreadlocks

Men Without Hats – Safety Dance

Ah, the 80’s. Really, what better motto?

We can dance if we want to… we can leave your friends behind….cuz your friends don’t dance and if they don’t dance then they ain’t no friends of mine.

People, there are jesters and dancing chickens in this video. So awesome….

As the previous will attest, I like dance themed songs/videos. Summer in the city….taking it back real old school — this is one of my FAVORITE scenes in one of my FAVORITE movies. Come on… the twist… the frug… the freaking Watusi!!!! Please, people, control yourselves.

Yep, summer’s really all about dancing, peeps.

Okay, that was fun. Come on, everybody play…. I’m not tagging specifically – anyone who’s game – c’mon.

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From bell hooks, Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom, (NY: Routledge, 1994).

To educate as the practice of freedom is a way of teaching that anyone can learn. That learning process comes easiest to those of us who teach who also believe that there is an aspect of our vocation that is sacred; who believe that our work is not merely to share information but to share in the intellectual and spiritual growth of our students. To teach in a manner that respects and cares for the souls of our students is essential if we are to provide the necessary conditions where learning can most deeply and intimately begin. (13)

When education is the practice of freedom, students are not the only ones who are asked to share, to confess. Engaged pedagogy does not seek simply to empower students. Any classroom that employs a holistic model of learning will also be a place where teachers grow, and are empowered by the process. That empowerment cannot happen if we refuse to be vulnerable while encouraging students to take risks. Professors who expect students to share confessional narratives but who are themselves unwilling to share are exercising power in a manner that could be coercive. ….When professors bring narratives of their experiences into classroom discussions it eliminates the possibility that we can function as all-knowing, silent interrogators. It is often productive if professors take the first risk, liking confessional narratives to academic discussions so as to show how experience can illuminate and enhance our understanding of academic material. But most professors must practice being vulnerable in the classroom, being wholly present in mind, body, and spirit. (21)

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