“The best way to understand New York’s Black upper class is to study its origins,” Dr. R. Chester Redhead told author Lawrence Otis Graham.
There is no way to say for certain if the journalist extraordinaire Simeon Booker and the eminent Justice Ernest Finney Jr. were ever at the same place at the same time, but given their eventful lives, particularly on the civil rights battlefields, they traversed some of the same historic ground.
Depicted on the cover of the April 1923 edition of The Crisis magazine is the art of Laura Wheeler Waring, and this image of a woman playing an ancient harp, entitled “Egypt and Spring,” was just one of several covers she illustrated.
No matter what you call it—a rebuke or a repudiation of President Trump and his former strategist Steve Bannon—folks in Alabama are calling it a victory for Democrat Doug Jones over Republican Roy Moore Tuesday evening in a very important special senate election.
For many years, come rain or shine, Dr. Jack Felder, along with his son, Nova, had a permanent spot on 125th Street in front of Mart 125.
Current news stories surrounding the political turmoil in Zimbabwe and Kenya, the sexual harassment charges against Rep. John Conyers Jr., remembering Rosa Parks’ iconic moment almost 62 years ago to the day and the ongoing recollection of the tragic death of Emmett Till bring to mind memories of Congressman Charles Diggs Jr. (D-Mich.), who had ties with each of these individuals or events.
Whenever the Miracles, Motown’s seminal group, is mentioned, invariably Smokey Robinson is the next word. But by 1975, Robinson was soloing, and it was left for Pete Moore, Ronnie White and Bobby Rogers to maintain things.
There’s a large blowup photo/poster of famed singer Alberta Hunter in the office of the Edwards Sisters’ Realty in Harlem. Hunter’s naked body is partially covered and at the bottom of the photo is her inscription to a Charlie Parker.
I am troubled by the recent allegations of sexual harassment, sexual misconduct and inappropriate behavior levelled against Rep. John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.), but there is no way I can be impartial.
Among the several riveting discoveries disclosed in Tiya Miles’ book “The Dawn of Detroit—A Chronicle of Slavery and Freedom in the City of Straits” (The New Press, 2017) is the extended discussion on Elizabeth Denison Forth.
By now, many of you have seen the documentary “Chasing Trane,” about the acclaimed musician John Coltrane.
Dampening the good news from Abu Dhabi about the recent opening of its new Louvre museum, which has already shown signs of boosting tourism and momentarily subsuming its reputation as a mall heaven, is the terrible news that an earthquake on the border of Iran and Iraq Sunday has left more than 400 fatalities, with more expected.
Among the last emails George Edward Tait sent to his friends and comrades were his “Occult Observations on the Months of January and February.
Whenever a notable person appears in a profile, particularly when that person is a relative or a close associate, I find it difficult to ignore that individual, and that is certainly the case with songstress Dakota Staton.
“She was a sister and daughter,” Merkerson noted, “a gentle spirit who saw the best in everyone.”
In the wake of the terrorist attack and the indictment of his former aides, President Trump conveniently embarked on a tour of Asia.
Because I won’t be around for Fred Staton’s home going services Nov. 2—the tenor saxophonist died Oct. 24 at the Atria Nursing Home & Zicklin Hospice in Riverdale, Bronx at 102—I thought the Classroom would be a perfect venue for a musician whose longevity was only exceeded by his soulful swinging.
After weeks of waiting and wondering how Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation was going, a resounding answer arrived Monday with indictments against Paul Manafort, President Trump’s former campaign manager, and Rick Gates, Manafort’s associate.
Many years ago, while conducting research on the Gullah-Geechee culture in the small islands off the coast of South Carolina, I had plans to extend this pursuit to Georgia, particularly to Sapelo Island.
No discussion of Detroit’s Black history is complete without consideration of the contributions made by Fred Hart Williams.
Ever since his announcement to run for the presidency, we have known of Trump’s distaste for the media, as he underscores it with the charge that we are “the enemy of the people.”
After putting his feud with the NFL and the cultural wars on hold, President Trump has finally devoted attention to the disaster in Puerto Rico in the wake of Hurricane Maria.
Like the hundreds who attended Elombe Brath’s events at the Harriet Tubman School in the past, there was a sizable crowd in the heart of Harlem last Saturday for a street co-naming ceremony in honor of the esteemed “freedom fighter,” as he was repeatedly called.
From the opening organ prelude with Donald Smith at the keyboard and Carol Sudhalter on baritone saxophone in a rendition of “Caravan” to a collective singing of “This Little Light of Mine,” led by Antoinette Montague, who officiated the funeral services, Sarah McLawler Kimes rested in a familiar milieu of music.
Within a few days of learning of Bernie Casey’s death, I had read an article about polymaths, those individuals who are proficient in several endeavors.
The topsy-turvy Trump world tumbled even further into chaos and turmoil last week as the president ratcheted up his culture war, asserted once more his support for repealing and replacing Obamacare, sided with a right wing candidate in Alabama and drew a line in the sand when faced off with the NFL.
When Ishmael Reed announced this week that Dr. Ruth Elizabeth Burks had died, he reminded us that she was among the contributors to “Black Hollywood Unchained—Commentary on the State of Black Hollywood,” a collection of essays he edited in response to the film “Django Unchained” and published by Third World Press (2015).
President Trump should swallow some of the words he delivered in his first address to the United Nations General Assembly Tuesday.
It was during a recent speaking engagement in Tulsa on the riot that occurred there in 1921 that I discovered in my research a most interesting man.
“I was lying there, frozen stiff and not moving, when my mother rushed into the room,” Simeon Wright recounted of the morning when his cousin Emmett Till was abducted by two white men.
In preparation for lectures in Tulsa, Okla., I stumbled upon the name of Evelyn La Rue, or LaRue, Pittman, and recalled seeing a photo of her taken by Carl Van Vechten, who documented so many outstanding African-Americans, particularly during the Harlem Renaissance era.
The recent death of Dick Gregory and citations from his book “Nigger” brought to mind the actor James Edwards.
Nearly every African-American community has its “Mother” or “Queen Mother,” who has dedicated her life to preserving both her people’s present welfare and her enduring legacy.
As predicted, President Trump, hours after a rather conciliatory speech at Fort Myer—where it was more about Charlottesville than Afghanistan—was back at his accusatory best, blaming the media for the violence in Virginia last week.
Dick Gregory possessed a comedic gift that when combined with his political insight cut like a laser to the heart of the Black experience in America.
When I arrived at the University of Iowa in 1983, Dr. Darwin Theodore Troy Turner had already reached a commanding plateau of his amazing academic career. At that time, he was the University of Iowa Foundation’s Distinguished Professor of English.
Rather than being upstairs at the Hilton Riverside in New Orleans, where there was a standing room only crowd for the appearance of Omarosa Manigault at the 2017 National Association of Black Journalists conference, a few of us chose to spend the time meeting with the National Writers Union.
The fissure in the nation’s race relations experienced a more tragic chasm in Charlottesville, Va. over the weekend, and it also signaled a further collapse of the Trump administration.
No matter which of the endeavors consumed her at the moment—poet, scholar, educator, musician, activist, literary critic, performer or mother—Sarah Webster Fabio did it with uncommon flair and creativity.
President Trump ratcheted his rhetoric to its most militaristic edge Tuesday, warning North Korea to end its threat against the U.S. or face the “fire and fury and frankly power, the likes of which this world has never seen before.”
There is no need to wait for years to go by to enshrine Dr. S. Allen Counter, who died July 12 at his home in Cambridge, Mass. Dr. Counter was 73 and his daughter, Philippa Counter, said the cause of death was cancer
Anthony Scaramucci, the latest victim in the Trump administration, might be said to have tripped over the same tongue that for 10 days as communications director had given him a national platform.
The storied Harlem Renaissance is replete with authors, but often neglected are the librarians, the bibliophiles who played an important role in keeping the books on the shelves and ensuring a struggling writer’s success.
“Let the sideshow begin,” Blue Magic sang years ago, but they could have been talking about the GOP charade, the upcoming vote-a-rama as they reject amendment after amendment on how to repeal and replace Obamacare.
Despite the overwhelming recognition and attention Detroit is receiving in preparation for the 50th anniversary of the rebellion, there are sure to be many interesting elements that will not be covered.
One would think that with the GOP in command in Congress and with President Trump presiding over the White House that the repeal or the replacement of Obamacare was all but history.
While we welcome the arrival of Black Press Month, we mourn the passing of Martha Rivera Chavis, the wife and first lady of the NNPA, of which her husband, Dr. Benjamin Chavis Jr., is the president and CEO.
Pianist, composer, educator Geri Allen was born in Pontiac, Mich., June 12, 1957; raised in Detroit; was a graduate of Howard University; earned a degree in ethnomusicology at the University of Pittsburgh; played all over the world;
There was, as expected, a flurry of renewed interest in the life and musical legacy of jazz great Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong over the last week or so because his birthday was on or somewhere around the Fourth of July.
After months of threats and speculation, Wednesday afternoon Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) has formally introduced an article of impeachment against President Trump.