Why I Dropped Everything And Started Teaching Kendrick Lamar’s New Album

Brian Mooney

When Kendrick Lamar released his sophomore album, To Pimp A Butterfly (2015), I was in the middle of teaching a unit on Toni Morrison’s novel, The Bluest Eye (1970). My freshmen students were grappling with some big ideas and some really complex language. Framing the unit as an “Anti-Oppression” study, we took special efforts to define and explore the kinds of institutional and internalized racism that manifest in the lives of Morrison’s African-American characters, particularly the 11-year-old Pecola Breedlove and her mother, Pauline. We posed questions about oppression and the media – and after looking at the Dick & Jane primers that serve as precursors to each chapter, considered the influence of a “master narrative” that always privileges whiteness.

Set in the 1940s, the Breedlove family lives in poverty. Their only escape is the silver screen, a place where they idolize the glamorous stars of the film industry. Given the historical context…

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Losing a baby – things I’ve learned about miscarriage

The Happy Baby Project

1. You may not realise anything is wrong. You may not bleed, nor feel cramps. In fact, you may be blissfully unaware that there is a problem at all until a scan, when instead of a kicking happy baby, you see a lifeless thing floating asleep, or you see nothing at all.

2. A scan will forever be a hateful thing – rather than excitement at looking at the screen, you will always wish the screen to be turned away from you, expecting a “sorry, there’s no heartbeat”.

3. And while I’m at it, sonographers have the best poker faces in the world. Fact.

4. After the scan, there is a lot of waiting. Waiting for further scans, waiting for tests. Waiting to miscarry naturally or waiting for pills to make you miscarry. Then there is waiting for appointments, waiting for operations to remove tissue. Finally there is waiting for your period to…

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💚🌺

Im sitting here crying now .
Ill never forget how you made me feel .
Walked away without a tear running down my eye
With endless reasons to cry
You molded my heart into your own creation of something so worthless.
Maybe i shouldve just not cared
But if i did , you wouldnt be here. Maybe you seen how much i loved you and thought you could take advantage.
Im not a toy
But you made me realize that in my life i could find more joy
Happiness & love. .
Its not my fault i dont see you the same
Caring heart, beating fast from the sound if your name.
Feelings i tried so hard to tame
You wanted me to change and now its not the same.
You know my heart , know im a great guy
So i dont know why
You dont believe im hurting …
Trying to wipe the tears from the eyes
..Of you and I
💔🌺

– Nicholas

Dear ALS Ice Bucket Challenge Haters,

itsginamarie

You’re wrong.

My dad died two years ago from complications related to ALS, and I’m here to tell you that the Ice Bucket challenge is not “stupid.” It is not “worthless” or “annoying” or “retarded.” You are just ignorant.

(A reminder that ignorance is not the same as stupidity, and that ignorance can be cured. Here is your cure.)

Many people complain that dumping a bucket of ice over your head won’t solve anything. It’s simply a fad, it’s clogging up news feeds, it’s not doing anything for the actual cause. The term “slacktivism” has been thrown around, implying that these people are akin to those who “Like” causes on Facebook from the comfort of their own home without so much as getting off the couch. I understand the accusation. But ultimately, it is false.

Here’s why.

1. Watching people dump ice over their heads and seeing their resultant expressions…

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