Sex Criminals and the Comic Subtleties of Anti-Black Racism

Sometimes it's tucked away, hidden just beneath the tongue, or in the sly twist of the mouth… Anti-blackness is so pervasive that I think media creators aren't even aware of how they present it on a regular basis. That's me giving them the benefit of the doubt, in spite of all the evidence that suggests ... Read More

Black Mandarin: Critical Speculations on Language and Power

A contemplation of the revolutionary potential of teaching black kids Mandarin. Beyond allowing black people to have more mobility within a new power structure, fluency in Mandarin would allow us to spread our own influence. Our revolutionary spirit writ large to resonate with people around the world…

Thomas Jefferson is the Founding Father of White Supremacy

When you hear the name Thomas Jefferson, it is likely followed by "founding father", "hero", "patriot", and other such reverent terms. But he should also be considered one of the Founding Fathers of white supremacy. Nearly every white supremacist idea, claim, or rationale, can be found in Jefferson's Notes on the State of Virginia…

12 Years A Slave: Black Suffering for White Consumption

What does any black person stand to gain from sitting in a dark movie theater—more than likely surrounded by white people—and being psychologically assaulted for two hours? Will we then turn to those white audience members and discuss how horrible it all was, how many tears they shed, and eventually breathe a collective sigh of ... Read More

Flexuality: Elastic Sexual Norms in the Work of Octavia Butler

An examination of how Butler challenges sexual norms, from the incest taboo in the Patternist series, to interspecies sex in the Lilith’s Brood trilogy, to pedophilia and rape in Fledgling, and arguably all three of these in her short story Bloodchild. These stories show us how norms, particularly sexual ones, are flexible between worlds, cultures, ... Read More

Mexican Superman: Forged in the Crucible of White Supremacy

The obvious reason for more diversity and inclusion in comics is to allow marginalized people to better identify with the characters. Superheroes are more interesting for being more human, for having trauma, hardship, and conflict. To the great extent that white folks - particularly cisgendered heterosexual men - have privilege and power, it further insulates ... Read More

The Misrepresentation of the Magical Negro

It is one of the oldest clichés that the “forces of darkness” will set upon that which is good and “light”. In a medium where the heroes are most often white and characters of color – especially black characters – are reduced to plot devices, and in a society where power is designated along lines ... Read More

The Razor’s Edge Between Invisibility and Fetishism

For all “darkness” figures into the thinking of fantasy authors, it is conspicuously absent from the features of the characters. Except the “dark lords” and such, who play off of the fact that darkness equates to evil in the white literary imagination. Tolkien took it a step further, equating not only darkness with evil in ... Read More

Indian Killer and the Skewering of White Liberals

Alexie points a finger at the self-satisfying ramblings of white liberals, who for all they may understand intellectually, lack any real personal understanding of the Indian condition, or of the fact that there may not even be any such monolithic condition…

Beauty and Self-Hatred: A Reading of Sherman Alexie’s Flight

In Flight, Alexie seems to be asking whether or not self-hatred can be neutralized through assimilation – that is, can Zits’s hatred of his own Indian-ness be dissolved into a claiming of his whiteness? Indeed whiteness itself is a product of assimilation, with Irish, Italian, German, and other European ethnicities blending within the “melting pot” ... Read More