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Posts tagged "women"


In the U.S., Avon ladies helped pioneer the door-to-door sales business model while peddling makeup and perfumes. Today, one at a time, women are fanning out to reach some of the world’s most remote markets with desperately needed goods and services. How a traveling salesforce of women could bridge Africa’s “last mile.”

I’m still trying to process this…

Finally, fedoras for a good cause! Check it out:

Women wear many hats - as community leaders, mothers, workers, volunteers, and much more.  To celebrate this, the We Belong Together campaign is using the fedora as a metaphor for the many hats that women wear to create a brighter future for all.  It is also a symbol of the need for immigration reform that treats women fairly, and a declaration that though women wear many hats, on this issue we speak with one voice.

There are 11 million people living in the United States without legal status and more than half of these immigrants are women. Current immigration laws discriminate against women who want to work in this country; separate parents, children and partners; prevent families from reunifying as a result of endless family visa backlogs; and jeopardize women’s autonomy and safety. We now have the historic opportunity to transform conditions for immigrant women, LGBT families, and their loved ones.

Congress is poised to vote on immigration reform legislation this year. The Senate will debate and vote first, in the weeks following Memorial Day. Our goal is to pressure Congress to support a bill that fixes our immigration system and provides a pathway to citizenship for all 11 million undocumented immigrants, while also treating women and LGBT families fairly.

We are more likely to achieve this goal if women, the LGBT community, and allies make our voices heard. The Fedoras for Fairness campaign (#Fairdora) is an effort to demonstrate our support while calling on others to join us.

We Belong Together is led by the National Domestic Workers Alliance and the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum,  and driven by the participation of women’s organizations, immigrant rights groups, children, and families across the country.


I am honored to host World Hip Hop Women: From the Sound Up presented by @nomadicwax @WorldHipHopMkt & @DJLajedi

A lot of my sisters on this compilation, and it definitely disproves the misinformed theory that there are only a few to none dope female emcees rippin it… 

Listen & Judge for Yourself :-) 

Track Listing: 

1. Eternia + MoSS – “The BBQ Remix (ft. Tiye Phoenix & Jean Grae)” (Canada/USA/prod: MoSS)

2. M.C. Melodee – “Cha Cha Cha 2011” (Netherlands/prod: Cookin Soul)

3. Masia One – “Warriors Tongue” (Canada/Singapore/prod: Che Vicious & Travis Von Cartier)

4. Mad Muasel – “Soloyo” (Spain/prod: JML)

5. Ana Tijoux + Invincible – “Sube” (Chile/USA/prod: Hordatoj & Ana Tijoux)

6. Raw-G AKA Gina Madrid – “Conexiones Subterraneas (ft. Aima the Dreamer) (Mexico/USA/prod: Cubo)

7. Shadia Mansour – “Al Kufeyyeh 3Arabeyyeh” (UK/Palestine/prod: Sandhill & Johnny Juice)

8. Soultana – “Sawt Nssa (Women’s Voice)” (Morocco/prod: Itoube Music)

9. Sa-Roc – “Fine Line” (USA/prod: Sol Messiah)

10. Bella Shanti – “Saint or Sinner” (New Zealand/prod: Soul Chef)

11. El Gambina – “Sunny Days” (Korea/USA/prod: Jony Fraze)

12. Mana, Mia Lone, Triple Threat & Opal Rose – “Young Girl” (Iran/USA/prod: Blackheart)

13. The Foundation Of 5E: Taneesha, Insite The Riot, Jade, Nik Nak, Mahogany Jonz, DJ LaJedi - “The Foundation” (USA/prod: AEetech)

14. Black Bird – “H-Town Hustler” (Zimbabwe/S. Africa/Zambia/prod: Jusa Dementor)

15. Peridot (formerly Queen Herawin of The Juggaknots) – “So” (USA/prod: SINQUE)

16. Invincible + Waajeed – “Emergence” (USA/prod: Waajeed)

17. Las Krudas Cubensi – “No Me Dejaron” (Cuba/prod: Odaymara Cuesta, Olivia Prendes & DJ Mike)

18. Lithal Li – “Eye The Con” (South Africa/prod: Yves Adler)

19. Black Athena, Versy, Burni (Jitzvinger, Caco) – “Disputing Claims” (South Africa/prod: Shaheen Arifdien)

20. EmpresS*1(الامبراطورة الاولي) – “Rap Renaissance/Bent Belady” (Egypt/UK/prod: Silent Sym/Asteeka)

21. DJ Naida – “Done” (Zimbabwe/prod: Xndr)

For interviews, media inquiries, or for more information please contact DJ LaJedi at unlimitzzzzz@gmail.com and Greg Schick at greg@worldhiphopmarket.com

(via guerrillamamamedicine)

This is how you weeeeerrrrrrk!

(via newmodelminority)

To show me what rural poverty looks like in Hidalgo County, Planned Parenthood promotora (outreach worker) Dora Alicia Proa takes me to a colonia nearly 15 miles away from McAllen, in San Carlos. Colonias are unincorporated subdivisions founded in the 1950s by predatory developers who sold lots of barren and flood-prone land to poor Latin American migrant workers without installing basic infrastructure. They are synonymous with poverty. Literally. The Texas Secretary of State defines these communities as “residential areas along the Texas-Mexico border that may lack some of the most basic living necessities, such as potable water and sewer systems, electricity, paved roads, and safe and sanitary housing.”

Last year, Hidalgo County’s Planned Parenthood offered free birth control, STI testing, Well Woman exams and men’s health screenings at the San Carlos Community Resource Center. Now, to get the same services, patients have to drive up to 20 miles to the Edinburg clinic, where a physical, HIV test and Pap smear costs at least $60 and a monthly supply of birth control pills costs $20 at minimum.

The Hidalgo County Health and Human Services Department runs eight clinics where people of all ages can get a range of services, from tuberculosis treatment to newborn screenings. However, wait times are reportedly brutal, and the health department’s STI testing site is located in McAllen. Ostensibly to fill the void created by Planned Parenthood closures, the University of Texas Medical Branch opened a maternal health clinic in Hidalgo. But that site is also in McAllen; it specializes in pregnancy and prenatal care, and it doesn’t have weekend hours.

In one San Carlos household Proa and I visit—a cramped trailer on concrete blocks where the kitchen sink collides with bunk beds—Proa informs two young women that the Edinburg clinic is running a special on annual exams. They shake their heads at the mention of cash, then tsk tsk at six young boys and girls who are smiling shyly, pointing and calling me chocolate.

Next, Proa introduces me to a young woman standing in front of a three-room track house with dirt floors, a chunk of the roof missing and the toilet located in a crumbling shed next door. My Spanish is pitiful and neither Proa nor the homeowner speaks much English. But I can see that four small children and two adults share this space.

Within this context, it’s unclear how defunding conveniently located sources of free birth control, STI testing, Pap smears, clinical breast exams and other women’s health care is a pro-life activity. But this is what counts as logic in today’s abortion wars.

Akiba Solomon, “Collateral Damage In The War On Women,” Colorlines 10/11/12

Many women I spoke with who actually use the word “yoni” (often interchangeably with other terms) proudly identify with the idea of their vaginas and wombs as creative and powerful sacred spaces. It’s not self-hate or faux spirituality to them: they see the vagina as more than a body part. They see it as a source of power. It’s a reminder that at one time it was worshipped, not politicized, regulated, and disrespected. What’s wrong with women feeling more empowered and less shameful of their yonis, vaginas, pussies, cunts—whatever they want to call it ? The words we use about ourselves are powerful. And most women who use words like “goddess” and “yoni” are not fans of rape apology as Wolf is.

Ancient Eastern spiritual practices are often appropriated by Westerners who are in search of “answers” or a new experience. That’s what we do in the West, we appropriate! However, many people, including myself, have learned to treat these and other traditions with respect, humility and awareness of context. Therefore, I won’t dismiss people’s safe sexual expression or the way people choose to identify themselves and their body parts, even in the context of this ridiculous book.

If a bunch of women want to get together in a Manhattan hotel and willingly get their needs taken care of in a safe space by clothed men who have been “trained” to honor and worship the vag, then I support it. If women who have sexual trauma, or feel sexually blocked and frustrated, actually experience life-changing sexual and creative re-awakenings via a “somatic therapist” who does tantric massage at his house then I will cheer! Can we stop shaming people for their sexual choices? This could be considered a form of sex work and it is also what some would consider an expression of sacred sexuality.

I’ve been in these “alternative” spaces and know people who actively participate; this is no joke to them. Mainstream feminism’s tendencies towards the judgmental too often negates the legitimate experiences of many. I bet many of those people who believe in sacred sexuality would identify as feminists and/or believe in equality between the sexes; they might even use the word “yoni.”

Between the reviews and the book itself, I feel reminded as to why me and many other women are less inclined to identify with “feminism” these days—trapped in the middle of arguments that leave no room for our spiritual lives. Lately mainstream online feminist discourse has become defined by a specific set of beliefs that make someone a “real” or “good” feminist. How are we making those distinctions? These ideals generally ostracize people with lesser representation like women of color, LGBTQ women, disabled people, and even us kumbaya spiritual folks. It’s becoming more of a dogma than movement. That’s how we lose people. When we discredit different spiritual beliefs, particularly the Divine Feminine, or divergent experiences of feminism even though we all believe in equality, then patriarchy wins. This goddess isn’t having it.

Racialicious Crush Of The Week: Pam Grier

I knew Pam Grier was ridiculously amazing because of her legendary roles in Blaxploitation films. But when I saw her cast as the Dust Witch, described as “the most beautiful woman in the world” in Something Wicked This Way Comes, I knew back then in my teens that Hollywood would never, ever cast a Black woman in a role that would even have such a description. In that theater, I witnessed a bit of a revolution that escaped Hollywood’s beauty echo chamber. And I stayed in massive crushitude with Grier ever since

The clip above is a second reason why I <3 her, and this excerpted interview is a third:

O: When you were making Coffy and Foxy Brown, did you have any conception that you were creating a powerful new female archetype, this sort of iconic, larger-than-life figure?

PG: No, not at all. You never know how people are going to respond. I just wanted to try to do interesting work. I was surprised and humbled by the legacy of it.

O: You were the first woman to play that type of character.

PG: Yeah, well. I saw it in my real life, I saw it in the police force in Denver, and I saw it in the military. I saw women share the platform with men in my personal world, and Hollywood just hadn’t wakened to it yet. Bette Davis and Katharine Hepburn changed the way they saw women during the 1940s, but I saw it daily in the women’s movement that was emerging, because I was a child of the women’s movement. Everything I had learned was from my mother and my grandmother, who both had a very pioneering spirit. They had to, because they had to change flat tires and paint the house–because, you know, the men didn’t come home from the war or whatever else, so women had to do these things. So, out of economic necessity and the freedoms won, by the ’50s and ’60s, there was suddenly this opportunity and this invitation that was like, “Come out here with these men. Get out here. Show us what you got.” And they had to, out of pure necessity. Out of necessity comes genius. Not to say that I was a genius, but I did the things I had to do.

O: Did you get a lot of feedback at the time about your film work?

PG: The masses enjoyed it. They enjoyed seeing a female hero. And then some of the more conservative people said, “Couldn’t you have done something else? Couldn’t you have played a nun? Couldn’t you play Mother Mary, or something more conservative?” And I said, “You guys are so fragmented that nobody’s going to come. Nobody’s going to see those movies.” The way things are right now, they want to see action, they want to see heroes and heroines. And if you’re not that, you’re an art film, and if you were black, then you weren’t going to be in that art film. If you were black, you may not get to do theater. So you’re marginalizing yourself even further, and you’re not going to get the experience or break down stereotypes. Although at the beginning, my ambition was never to break down doors. It was just to earn tuition for myself and work in an industry where women hadn’t been allowed or invited. That’s all I wanted to do, not thinking that I would make waves, change minds, excite people, incite people, turn people on, repulse people. We’ve got $20 million actresses today who are nude in Vanilla Sky, nude in Swordfish. So what did I do different? I got paid less, but that’s it. And if you see it as an art form, what’s the problem? You know what it’s rated, and you know what you’re going to see, because the critics tell you. If it offends you, don’t go.

O: Do you consider yourself a feminist?

PG: I consider myself conscious of how we’re treated, and sometimes I can be a feminist. Sometimes I’m a little Republican, sometimes I’m a little Democrat. Sometimes I’m angry, sometimes I’m not angry. I’m not a total feminist, but I believe in rights for females. I believe that if we have to pay 100 percent for our college tuition, and then we get into the workplace and we’re only given 70 percent of our counterparts’ salaries, then we shouldn’t have to pay but 70 percent of our college tuition. Maybe that’ll stop the bullshit. Now, come on. I ask you, how would you like your mom, your wife, your daughter to spend $100,000 to go to Harvard or some state school, and go out into the workplace, and you know she’s great, and men are getting paid $200 per week more than her? Would that piss you off? What if you lost your job and you stay home crippled while she goes out, and she thinks she’s going to get a good job, but someone male with the same level of experience and the same level of education gets paid more than her? You’re going to get pissed. Until you walk a mile in someone else’s shoes, I don’t want to hear it. See, that’s the disparity that we have. That’s what makes people say, “Why should I work so hard? I’m not going to get paid.” When we have that so prevalent in the black community, that’s what saddens me, because that’s when we know we can’t get films made that uplift. We have to have films about action and violence and special effects. That’s the sad part, but you know what? It’s not me doing it.

I’mma need some of my brothers to stop thinking that when women can claim a space to affirm the pleasure of their sexuality (and sex) that it is not frivolous exercise; it is, in fact, “political” in a society that cares very little about the sexual lives of women (especially Black) and what my brilliant sisters Joan Morgan & Treva B Lindsey call the “Pleasure Principle.”
Mark Anthony Neal, from his Facebook page, because some dude derided Heidi Lewis’s post on Lil Wayne, Black masculinity, and cunnilingus as “not political.” 
Celebrities, especially female celebrities, struggle to be seen as full human beings. So it’s laudable that interviewer Starlee Kine made sure to touch on Longoria’s new projects (For Greater Glory with Andy Garcia is a standout), her production credits (she’s got a dating show in the works and is the executive producer of that Devious Maids show), her start in political activism, why she’s reading 50 Shades of Grey, and her sense of style. Now if only we could get a little more rigor in questions about her projects…
Hee! Latoya Peterson gives some ups to Eve Longoria’s interview about her activism on the R today.