It is important to think about the reasons why we do the things we do and the ends to which our actions aim. Especially when our actions have a direct impact on other people. The narratives of the Golden Calf and the construction of the Mishkan offer different ways of approaching the topic of purpose-driven action and highlight the importance of being mindful of why we do certain actions over others.
In Exodus 25:2 we learn that Hashem spoke to Moses and requested donations of materials that would be used to construct the Mishkan. But they weren’t just any donations…
The art of braiding, as engaged with in both theory and practice, ties me to my roots.
As reported by Essence magazine in 2018, “Braids are more than mere aesthetics. They bind us together. They are an integral part of Black culture — past, present and future.”¹ Consequently, the politics, ethics, culture, and aesthetics of Black hair have been examined by artists, theorists, and writers for centuries. From imagery depicting braided hairstyles in ancient African art to oral histories depicting the navigation-based role of patterned plaits in manumission movements, braids’ importance in transnational Black history is not new.
Colloquial phrases fail to capture the magnitude of the loss and the depth of the chasm left in the place of tender, playful love that was — always more warm than chaotic, more soft than burning — left to spend its final moments gasping for air. Especially when it’s too strong to die. Too deeply rooted in the most fertile parts of your soul. Destined or doomed to ebb and flow with the rising seas of Lethe. Anchored to bittersweet memories that take on a life of their own.
On Thursday, December 10, 1942 Anne Frank wrote about the “comical sight” of sausages — that she watched be ground, seasoned, and squeezed into casings by Mr. Van Dann — dangling from the ceiling that made everyone who saw them burst into laughter. She also wrote about the dirty state of their kitchen and how Dussel had an eye infection he was dabbing with a chamomile tea bag. She then went on to describe what it was like to watch Dussel work on his first dental patient’s mouth at his practice. “The whole scene resembled one of those engravings from…
My experiences as a Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellow (MMUF) helped inform my beliefs about academia. Prior to becoming a Fellow, I didn’t even use the word “academia” nor did I have any idea that programs like MMUF existed. When I applied to the fellowship as a “continuing education” student in my mid-twenties I was certain I’d be rejected. Sure, I always loved learning and was a lifelong bibliophile but I wasn’t a great student by any means. Just a curious one. After a five year period of 60 hour work weeks and random internships I returned to college to finish…
There are so many baby products we use that can be repurposed once they are no longer needed for caregiving duties like changing diapers or storing pumped milk. Before you consider repurposing some items, you should always opt to donate the items to a local daycare first or give them to a friend who could use them for their own children. But if donating the items isn’t an option for you, there are countless ways to make use of them to prevent them from ending up in landfills.
In the ongoing, global project of dismantling oppressive and violent structures it is important to make sense of one’s place in the world and within the myriad systems we all must navigate on a daily basis in order to participate in society.
To clarify, by “place” I mean the physical spaces we occupy — like the areas of colonized land on which we live, the geographical regions we call home, the built environments were travel in-between, and the various other places on Earth we can touch whether man-made or part of the natural world. I also mean the conceptual spaces…
My grandmother, Florestine “Flo” Wallace, taught me how to repurpose anything. Even the little things. Those giant Country Crock butter tubs made perfect popcorn bowls. Planters peanut cans became used cooking oil containers and bulk jars that we’d fill, and refill, with treats from the local market. If we knew we couldn’t recycle or repurpose something, we didn’t bring it home. Flo was a conscious spender and consumer who made sure I knew and respected the value of every single thing I came in contact with. …
I’ll keep this short and simple,
there isn’t much to say,
if my image brings you profit
then it’s me who you must pay.
You profit off our bodies
and you use us for the clout,
and if we try to question it
you quickly push us out.
You sit on countless millions
and I know we could be paid
but you’d rather just exploit us
and call it a fair trade.
We don’t need more exposure,
just open up your wallet,
send us money we are owed
and don’t dare try to stall it.
To you we’re just Black…
When it comes to health and wellness, in order to act in the best interest of ourselves, and other members of our communities, we must be made aware of all facts and risks related to things that can harm us by reliable, unbiased experts. This is where the importance of risk communication, or different types of programming and messaging disseminated by experts and professionals that inform people about the risks associated with harmful phenomena, comes in.
Our ability to make informed decisions about our health depends on whether or not we have access to the necessary educational resources to learn…
NYC-based philosophy graduate student whose work covers Genocide Studies, Repro + Enviro Justice, and Critical Race Theory. @moontwerk