“Black women’s literature has filled in the crudely drawn lines of the dominant culture, correcting narratives that have defamed us, breathing depth and complexity into stilted stereotypes, creating space for us to see ourselves, to stand up, to expand.”
My friend Lauren sent me this lovely story over the weekend, about a pianist struggling to hold onto his music in the face of a degenerative disease, and a fellow musician who helped bring his songs to life again:
The music was still in Steve Goodwin. It was hidden in rooms with doors about to be locked.
The task would be unlike anything she’d ever attempted. Steve would have to play what he could remember. She’d fill in the blanks, interviewing him, playing for him, trying to understand the music he heard but could no longer bring to life.
In many ways, she decided, the project was a spiritual calling. She believes every human has the ability to create and bring beauty into the world. Within each of us is something worth preserving . . .
“In many ways, Jess’s fate was never up to her parents, and that’s what a film like Bend It Like Beckham declares. Our autonomy is important for our own stories, and sometimes you just need to see someone who looks like you, and thinks like you, to win.”
Mr. Obama wants to talk with the young people onstage at the elite school about civic engagement, community organizing and the importance of not withdrawing from the challenges facing society. But the young people will be free to ask whatever they want, and they might choose to press the former president on topics like immigration, climate change or racial justice — all areas where anything Mr. Obama says is likely to be interpreted as a critique of Mr. Trump.
[IMPORTANT CAT CONTENT] Learn something new every day.
(Got a link I should share in one of these things? Let me know.)
Finally, are you aware that we send out a biweekly Saturday newsletter, The Slingshot, written by my colleague Mensah Demary? It’s the perfect way to make sure you don’t miss out on any of the wonderful work we publish. I think you’ll dig it if you sign up.