Heard it's Nia Long Appreciation Day. I'm here for it. Here are some of my favorite interviews and appearances from her. Stream a Nia Long film tonight to show how powerful black women are and have always been for the arts and entertainment.
Cicely, Titan of American Literature: 13 Classics She Brought to Life
No other screen persona served the general public more as a constant reminder of the stubborn, healthy and diverse black literary world which defied sentencing to invisibility and dismissal as just a trend. Cicely Tyson achieved this while diversifying in roles by other writers from all backgrounds, regions and genres… Please enjoy and share this catalog of Ms. Tyson’s greatest roles drawn from great, classic American literature I hope you seek out soon.
Now About That Cover…
I thought, by now, these recent cover shots like Lorna Simpson's construction with Rihanna for ESSENCE or Regina King and Viola Davis's old Hollywood glamour shots would just be the norms for black women. VOGUE has reminded me to never get comfortable. Hope, always. But never be surprised...
I’m Only Watching Women Now
I'm blessed to be a woman in these times when so many women before me have resisted to overturn age discrimination and racist beauty standards that left so many of us out of range.
Zora Would Want You To
On days like this, meaning a notable artist like Zora Neale Hurston's birthday, the custom is to suggest enjoying his or her work and to "support" others like them in their names. However, something tells me this is not what Zora would want. I think most writers take their birthdays off for things like cake, people, wine and gluttony over discipline. So today Zora wants us to party in her name. And for you to write your own novel, put elbow grease on your big dream and take her as example somebody somewhere will love your work someday.
“Black Woman Gossip” Update: More Essential Black Women’s Story Collections
"Black Woman Gossip" listed my favorite black women story collections, including Alice's IN LOVE AND TROUBLE: STORIES OF BLACK WOMEN. In particular I noted the transfer of African oral tradition to the printed word, with the necessity to shortcut African-American speech for varieties of oppressive reasons leading to virtues of expression and cadence, and, of course, secrets. Since then, today's publication of Deesha Philyaw's THE SECRET LIVES OF CHURCH LADIES (West Virginia University Press, 2020) pinched me like a church lady would, to tell me it's time for an update.
“I allow myself creative freedom to make whatever kind of art I feel like in the moment…” – Tiffany Gholar
Gholar has a provided missive for a new way to write about the creative life, art-making and (most specifically) Black women navigating those historically troubled waters for all talents.