The Emperor Has No Clothes; Or, Why I Ain’t Waiting In No Damn Line

camp1For the first time, I am seeking an optional transfer for my daughter for the 2015-2016 school year. But I am not waiting in no damn line. I will, as the Shelby County Schools optional transfer FAQs dictate, proceed to the Board of Education on Monday morning to retrieve an application with a barcoded ticket that will hold my place in a first-come, first-served line for the particular school and grade I want my daughter to attend. I realize that waiting puts me at a disadvantage. Reports from the camp site–yes, the camp site–indicate that there are already at least 50 people in front of me. Today is Sunday, and people have been set up at the Board of Education since Wednesday. But I am not pressed, because I know the emperor has no clothes. People camping out, though, haven’t gotten the memo–or refuse to read it because of what it says about race, class, and contemporary American education.

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Prince Made Me Start This Blog: Negress Year (Plus Another Year Plus Some Change) In Review


He--Prince--didn't exactly come to me in a cloud of purple divinity and command me to do so, mind you. I had been on Tumblr, largely out of pedagogical dedication, sporadically reblogging things and scrolling and refreshing pages for hours on end, … [Continue reading]

“An Idea of Change”: Marco Pavé and the Politicization of Memphis Hip-Hop

marco for blog post

Art is always already personal and political. Memphis native Marco Pavé’s recently released mixtape, Obscure Reality, and his community work in and beyond his neighborhood, exemplify this dual function of art, as well as the possibilities of art to … [Continue reading]

I Guess I’ll See You Next Lifetime: Geographies of Time Travel in Kiese Laymon’s Long Division

Long Division

24 Feb 2014 “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately…” -Thoreau, 1854 “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.” -Faulkner, 1950 “And I can feel it for sure/I been here before.” -Teena Marie, 1979 “I guess I’ll see you next … [Continue reading]