Art and the Arab Awakening

In the days following Mohamed Bouazizi’s self-immolation in the Tunisian town of Sidi Bouzid, burned and battered cars piled up inside state-owned lots throughout the country. Tunisians were expressing their anger and pain by setting fire to cars. This destruction did not last long. The image of ashes and despair soon turned into a positive, rejuvenating project.

Faten Rouissi—a Tunisian artist, activist, and resident of a suburb north of the Tunisian capital of Tunis—took notice of all the burned cars crammed into a vacant lot near her home. Rouissi successfully reached out to artists, performers, students, and youth to help transform the burned cars into “blooming objects in bright colors, adorned with revolutionary graffiti.” Her Street Art in the Neighborhood project established a contemporary public space to promote art as a creative collective.

Facing Stereotypes Through Graffiti

Repost from Teaching Tolerance Classroom Resources: Media Literacy Anti-Bias Domain: Justice Grade Level: Grades 9 to 12 Subject: Reading and Language Arts Overview: This activity deconstructs and assesses how stereotypes affect us unconsciously through the media. Number 44: Summer 2013 In this activity, students assess how stereotypes spread, how we believe some stereotypes unconsciously, and how we can become more aware of the effects of stereotypes on others and ourselves. Because this exercise places students in a vulnerable position, it’s imperative that students trust their peers and feel safe in the classroom. Actions At first, don’t tell students the purpose of the activity. Give students photographs of celebrities and a variety of permanent markers. Tell them to graffiti the photos with stereotypes that could be ascribed to each celebrity. Encourage them to use words and images from their arsenal of slang and symbols. Tell them to be as free with their…

The Black Radical Tradition

Repost from libcom A massive PDF compilation of writings about black radical and revolutionary movements in the US in the 20th century Contents Black Reconstruction – W.E.B. Du Bois What Socialism Means to Us – Hubert Harrison An Appeal to the Conscience of the Black Race to See Itself – Marcus Garvey Program of the African Blood Brotherhood – The African Blood Brotherhood Report on the Negro Question – Claude McKay Application for Membership in the Communist Party – W.E.B. Du Bois The Negro Nation – Harry Haywood An End to the Neglect of the Problems of the Negro Woman! – Claudia Jones The Revolutionary Answer to the Negro Problem in US – C.L.R. James Revolutionary Nationalism and the Afro-American – Harold Cruse Is the Black Bourgeoisie the Leader of the Black Liberation Movement? – Harry Haywood with Gwendolyn Midlo Hall The American Revolution – James Boggs Message to Grassroots…

Lemonade Syllabus

This is a compilation of more than 200 resources that specifically speak to Black women, from classics in fiction to Black feminist theory to inspirational and self-care guides. There are even resources for the young Black girls in our lives. Though the Lemonade Syllabus is robust, it is not exhaustive. It is my hope that this work will introduce you to other offerings from amazing Black women who tell our stories in hopes of setting us free.


By Beverly Hawk | Journal of Opinion After years of colonial trade, international business speaks an African language. You have to polish your African language to get a good job. Africans do not deign to speak English–except for a few anthropologists and linguists who are curious about native customs. The best way to get ahead is to convert to an African religion. It helps your language skills, and the African missionaries stationed here can get you into African schools. The most prestigious schools are African. People prefer them because they are the best; they are the best because people prefer them. These schools get the very best minds from the former colonies and settlements around the world. They say they do not discriminate by race, religion, or national origin. Of course, you must be qualified. A degree from an English-speaking school wont get you a job, so your own institutions…

On Being Bad and the School-to-Prison Pipeline: A Conversation with Author Crystal Laura

By Bill Ayers

Bill Ayers has written several books on education, including Teaching Toward Freedom and A Kind and Just Parent: The Children of Juvenile Court.

In Being Bad: My Baby Brother and the School-to-Prison Pipeline, Crystal Laura’s riveting account of her younger brother’s odyssey through school and detention and prison—a brutal journey that often feels meticulously designed to entangle and ensnare him—she makes an eloquent and urgent argument that schools can only succeed with all our children when they are built on a foundation of “love, justice, and joy,” a pursuit she describes as “dangerous and worthwhile.” Laura’s case for vigorous and vital schools, and against the prison nation, is also a brief for a healthier society.

I asked Crystal Laura about the interaction and meaning of these matters, and the question of what is to be done.

Being Bad stands at the juncture of several critical conversations: school improvement and urban school change, adolescent identity and the plight of Black boys in America, criminal justice, and the immense prison nation that has become a defining characteristic of our national life. What do you hope to contribute to these dynamic dialogues with this book?

The way I see it, many of the most important conversations about these huge, crashing issues are happening in separate learning environments—either among researchers in scholarly spaces or families and communities in activist circles—and the primary barrier between them is language.  We are often talking amongst ourselves and working for justice in silos.

Locked Down, Locked Out: An Interview with Maya Schenwar

By Alice Kim, Editor

“Prison is built on a logic of isolation and disconnection,” Maya Schenwar writes in her new book Locked Down, Locked Out: Why Prison Doesn’t Work and How We Can Do Better. Deftly weaving her own personal experiences with her sister’s incarceration alongside the stories of prisoners who she has been writing to over the last eight years, Schenwar illustrates the devastating effects of prisons on those who are incarcerated, their families, and our communities. With her book, she not only offers a searing analysis of the prison industrial complex but also possibilities for creating alternatives to mass incarceration.

I asked the author about her own transformation as a journalist, activist and sister and what it means to be a prison abolitionist.

In the beginning of your book, you describe how you felt when your sister had been arrested for the seventh time in six years: “Sort of hoping she’ll stay there,” you wrote. You say that you questioned how you could reconcile your staunch opposition to the prison-industrial complex with your desire to see your own sister locked up, a desire that was born out of desperation. Can you talk more about this contradiction and how these tensions manifested in your activist work, your family, and your relationship with your sister?

One of the things I discovered when this all came up with my sister was that there’s a trap set for anyone who has an addiction and doesn’t necessarily want to get better right away.

Science and Social Justice Bibliography

Books Calabrese Barton, Angela. Teaching Science for Social Justice. Teachers College Press, 2003. Dreger, Alice Domurat. Galileo’s Middle Finger: Heretics, Activists, and the Search for Justice in Science. New York: Penguin Press, 2015. Feder, E. K..Making Sense of Intersex: Changing Ethical Perspectives in Biomedicine. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2014. Gutstein, Eric. Rethinking mathematics: Teaching social justice by the numbers. Rethinking Schools, 2005. Jackson P., John and Nadine Weidman. Race, Racism, and Science: Social Impact and Interactions. New Jersey: Rutgers University Press, 2005. Kember, Sarah. iMedia: The Gendering of Objects, Environments and Smart Materials. Palgrave Macmillan UK, 2016. Lee, R..The Exquisite Corpse of Asian America: Biopolitics, Biosociality, and Posthuman Ecologies. New York: NYU Press, 2014. Ley-may Sheffield, Suzzanne. Women, Gender, and Science: Social Impact and Interactions. ABC-CLIO Incorporated, 2004. Trajkovski, Goran. Diversity in Information Technology Education: Issues and Controversies. Information Science Publishing, 2006. Skloot, Rebecca. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.…