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November-December 2020

We have done enough

Reflections on creative practice and its role within movements for Black life

Jessica P. Kirk

The energy that fills the room at a book launch surrounded by community is a feeling like no other. Walking into a reconfigured venue with familiar faces, soulful melodies, and warm hugs is one of those experiences I’m grateful to have been a part of before everything changed amid the pandemic. These are the kind […] More »
November-December 2020

What’s in a name?

On names, naming, and name-calling

Minelle Mahtani

“Give your daughters difficult names. Names that command the full use of the tongue. My name makes you want to tell me the truth. My name does not allow me to trust anyone who cannot pronounce it right.”       — Warsan Shire   “Mama, why do you always give out Dada’s name at […] More »
November-December 2020

A Black queer feminist press is born

Introducing Hush Harbour

Christelle Saint-Julien

Alannah Johnson and Whitney French know the world needs more Black literature. That’s why the Toronto-based writers have launched Hush Harbour, a literary press dedicated to imagining Black feminisms and uplifting works of short fiction. “There are so many Black writers and storytellers to uphold and affirm,” says French. “Among the many nuanced stories within […] More »
November-December 2020

Dear celebrities, it’s time to log off

Please stop your performative attempts at activism—this moment isn't about you

Rayne Fisher-Quann

  Dear Celebrities, The time has come for you to stop posting. We’re tired of it. Stop tweeting, stop snapping, stop dialing up your Rolodex of similarly-famed friends to orchestrate twee, black-and-white videos lamenting any of the society’s various ills. It’s time to take a step back, go to therapy, and realize that while there […] More »
September-October 2020

The code to success

Black boys to get involved in STEM

Kevin Philipupillai

Bryan Johnson, CEO and Founder of Black Boys Code · photo by Sean Anthony Photography   As the Black Lives Matter movement spread across different industries this year, 5,874 scientists around the world signed an online pledge in support of #ShutDownSTEM. The one-day strike in June was a call to action against anti-Black racism in […] More »
September-October 2020

Don’t tell me how to age

On aging, beauty, and expectations

Rose Cullis

Picture me sitting on a couch in chartreuse satin pajamas with turquoise embroidery stitched on the seams. The satin feels cool and slippery when I shift to move my computer onto my crossed legs to begin writing. I’ve pinned a big pink button over the place on the body we associate with the heart. The […] More »
September-October 2020

A certain swanness

On Korean adoption and beauty

Jenny Heijun Wills

A quarter million Korean adoptees live (or have lived) around the world. Aren’t our black eyes so cute when they get pushed up by our cheeks as we smile for the photo displayed at the office? Don’t we garner the most likes and applause on those mommy blogs when we’re sent to show-and-tell in a […] More »
September-October 2020

What fashion blogging taught me about being genderqueer

An essay about coming out in front of the camera

Sanchari Sur

I am not sure what compelled me to ask him, and what compelled him to say yes. But there I was, craning my neck like a chicken about to be slaughtered, and smizing my eyes for all they were worth, while he clicked. The photos were for my new fashion blog, my experiment with fashion […] More »
September-October 2020

Cover models

Six Canadian writers tell us about doing makeup looks to match beloved book covers

Various

“Terese has the best #booklooks and what a nice surprise to see this this morning,” tweeted author Casey Plett this spring when Terese Mason Pierre posted her #booklook based on Plett’s Little Fish. Later in the spring, Canthius, a feminist magazine of poetry and prose, tweeted that “the best thing on Twitter right now has […] More »
September-October 2020

Black art matters

Spotlight on Shaya Ishaq

Francesca Ekwuyasi

Shaya Ishaq’s work moves fluidly between mediums—words, ceramics, fibres, jewellery—while maintaining a central locus of honouring Black lineages and sparking light toward liberated Black futures. Tenacious and ever-evolving, Ishaq walked away from journalism school and signed up for a hand-building course at a pottery studio in her hometown of Ottawa. “I really fell in love […] More »
September-October 2020

Why the fight for inclusivity in fashion education is more important than ever

What schools could be doing differently to create more progress

Amanda Scriver

The fashion industry still has a lot of work to do when it comes to inclusivity. Often, when we discuss the lack of diversity—race, gender, body size, or disability—we think that the work of inclusivity has to start on the runways, in the boardrooms, or in editorial spreads. While it’s true that those changes need […] More »