Thursday, January 31, 2013

New blog: Black Stories From Spain

I forgot to write a post about this blog, but better late than never. 

Intro: "In this blog I will be talking about what is like to grow and live in this country as an Afrospanish nowadays. Let me introduce myself. I’m a journalist,  a 24-years-old university student (still) whispering from Spain, where I grew up. I did not come to life here, though, as my mun was in centre Africa in those sunny

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Black Heritage Amsterdam Tours

The Black Heritage Amsterdam Tour informs, inspires and educates, whether you are a descendant of former enslaved, an educator, or a visitor who is interested in learning more about the contributions of the African Diaspora to Dutch society from the 16th century to the present. 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Black Brazilian women protest against racist hair ad

Hair product Cadiveu Brasil launched a controversial campaign were various white people were photographed using huge afro wigs and holding a sign that says “eu preciso de Cadiveu (I need Cadiveu)”. Check the whole story at 

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Hans Massaquoi - Ebony editor who grew up black in Nazi Germany dies

Ebony — Hans Massaquoi, the former managing editor of Ebony magazine who wrote the  distinctive memoir "Destined to Witness: Growing up Black in Nazi Germany", has died. 

Monday, January 21, 2013

Michelle Obama attends abolition of slavery commemoration in Amsterdam?

Amsterdam Mayor Eberhard van der Laan has sent an invitation to the First Lady of the United States to come to Amsterdam and speech during the ceremony of the 150th anniversary of the abolition of slavery, according to Het Parool.   

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Video: "Ebony Towers" - Black academia versus authentic street black in US and UK

Photo: Black American academic Cornel West
"You can can get more love and consideration in black culture by going out of prison and being a recent ex convict than you can by getting a master's degree," says African-American academic Eric Dyson in the BBC documentary "Ebony Towers: The New Black Intelligentsia" by David Olusoga. A documentary which compares the state of black academia in the US and the UK and its relationship with the young urban Hip Hop generation. Update: According to AfricansArise, who uploaded the documentary in 2009, the documentary was actually produced in around 2003-2004, hence the lack of Obama.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Video: UK singer Laura Mvula - "Green Garden"

London singer songwriter Laura Mvula has debuted her new video, "Green Garden". The single is taken from her forthcoming album, "Sing To The Moon".

Friday, January 18, 2013

Video: Documentary "Black Russians - The Red Experience"

Shadow and act profiled the documentary "Black Russians - The Red Experience". A story of the lives and experiences of the black Americans who went to the Soviet Union during the Stalinist era in search of an ideal life. Escaping from racism and the Great Depression, they dove into new lives, having “nothing to lose” and no reason to turn back. Did they find what they were looking for? Their descendants who live in Russia and America today will share a story of their ancestors as well as their own.

The subjects include Wayland Rudd Jr., a Moscow-based singer and the son of an African-American actor who moved to the Soviet Union in the 1930s, and Russian TV personality Yelena Khanga, granddaughter of a Mississippi cotton farmer and a Polish-Jewish American woman who relocated to then Soviet Uzbekistan, the cradle of the country’s cotton industry, around the same time.  See video below.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Video: Protest against removal of Black British heroes from school National Curriculum

Over 40 leading British trade unionists and personalities want the Education Secretary to rethink his proposals to axe Crimean war heroine Mary Seacole and abolitionist Olaudah Equiano as required study in UK schools.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Book: "The Black Russian" - The story of Frederick Bruce Thomas

The Black Russian is the incredible story of black American Frederick Bruce Thomas, born in 1872 to former slaves who became prosperous farmers in Mississippi.  A rich white planter’s attempt to steal their land forced them to flee to Memphis, where Frederick’s father was brutally murdered.

After leaving the South and working as a waiter and valet in Chicago and Brooklyn, Frederick sought greater freedom in London, then crisscrossed Europe, and—in a highly unusual choice for a black American at the time—went to Russia in 1899.  Because he found no color line there, Frederick made Moscow his home. He renamed himself Fyodor Fyodorovich Tomas, married twice, acquired a mistress, and took Russian citizenship.

16th-Century painting hints at ties between Blacks and Jews

Blacks and Jews: Jewish police officers haul away a black man in this anonymous depiction of a Lisbon street scene
According to the Jewish Daily Forward,  both groups lived near gritty Portugal port in 16th Century. In the painting "Netherlandish" Blacks and Jews are depicted in a 16th century urban scene. 

Video: Esperanza Spalding - I know You know (Live) - Nobel concert

It was great that Esperanza Spalding did a benefit concert for Free the Slaves last year.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

MY 2012: Black children inspired by brothers and sisters in Renaissance Europe

It's my picture of 2012, the drawing "Renaissance City" by Harlem Part Elementary/Middle School Students in US.  They made the drawing after a visit from a museum educator, who introduced them to work of the exhibition Revealing the African Presence in Renaissance Europe of the Walter Art Museum. Students were asked to bring the portraits to life and give them a voice.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Video: Afro Diasporic French Identities

Via Mahogany
The documentary "Afro Diasporic French Identities" of Afro French writer and professor Nathalie Etoke is the result of a research project she began in 2010 in which she studied the relationship between race and citizenship in the specifically French sociopolitical context. She interviewed writers, artists, professors and community organisers who investigate the issue of race and identity in France.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

DEBATE: "I AM BLACK" - Dutch artists on criticising art from an Afro-European perspective

After the debate 'Am I Black Enough for You?' Dutch artists will explore a new theme in the debate ‘Am I Black'. Main theme: Is there space in the Netherlands and on the European continent in general, to make local ethnic issues part of the local art discourse on the basis of issues coming from the Black community? And, in this way establish an Afro-European thinking about art that could be part of the general art policies.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Exhibition: Design in Africa - At the museum Dapper in Paris

Design in Africa reveals a world primarily concerned with objects that are used as supports for the human body. Their conception bears witness to creativity getting to grips with the attitudes, movements and forms of decoration. A dialogue between form and function results in objects that may be either comfortable or prestigious.

Beyond boundaries of time and geography, objects undergo transformations: stools or headrests that can take several days of labour to produce, because of the different stages involved in carving the wood and inscribing decorative patterns, are now often replaced by contemporary furniture.

Museum Dapper is an artistic and cultural place for Africa, the Caribbean and their diaspora. Date 10 October 2012 - 14 July 2013 at the Museum Dapper in Paris France. Website:

Monday, January 7, 2013

Video: Tutu’s Children - A new generation of African leaders in Al Jazeera series

The four special documentaries will follow the exploits of participants in the leadership programme Desmond Tutu leads, which attempts to build a new network of African leaders who are together committed to tackling their countries' most stubborn problems.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

REVIEW: The Black Count: a real-life action hero in France

By Anouska Kock

Who doesn’t know Alexandre Dumas? Yes, I’m talking about the French guy who wrote such famous novels as ‘The Count of Monte Cristo’ and ‘The Three Musketeers’. You may also know that Dumas is of African descent.  Well, get this: Alexandre apparently based his stories on the life of his father: Thomas-Alexandre Dumas. Yep, that’s right. The real Count of Monte Cristo is a black fellow (or partly black fellow, to be precise – Alexandre’s old man was a mulatto).

It just so happens, that Thomas-Alexandre Dumas was a swashbuckling general during the French revolution. He rose to great fame, but then experienced a political downfall which eventually caused him to spend years in a dungeon and die in obscurity.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Images of Blacks in the Middle Ages in The Netherlands

Via Black Germans
In 'Things Aren’t Simple: the Black King in Manuscripts', Dutch Art Historian and curator Ester Schreuders writes about the first black figures in the art of the Low Countries, or Netherlands, figures which are especially found in miniatures, illuminations and illustrations from the late Middle Ages – the Gothic period – and the early Renaissance.  Check out her blog at

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!

Happy new year, bonne année, ein glückliches neues jahr, feliz año nuevo, feliz ano novo, felice anno nuovo, gott nytt år, godt nytår, godt nyttår, С Новым Годом, szczęśliwego nowego roku, sťastný nový rok en gelukkig nieuwjaar!
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