Friday, June 26, 2020

She Doesn’t Fit In



By Victoria L. Green

Although she is a black woman, in a room full of other young black women, she feels awkward because she does not feel that she can compare to the other women. She may be the darkest, or the thinnest, or the one with the shortest hair. She feels awkward because she does not know she is beautiful... Because of the young black women she sees in the media, she does not know where she fits in, and therefore she stands to the side...

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Young black women feeling awkward
AALCI 2020

Thursday, June 25, 2020

She was made to feel as if her disposition was excessive

Dawson Johnson

Although she is a Black woman in a room full of other young Black women, she feels awkward because in the past, she was made to feel as if her disposition was excessive. Just when she’d grown legs long enough to explore the whole of her being, her body was cramped into a square chalked right beside the welcome mat. Beside her, standing just as tall (if not taller), sprung a picketed sign that read, BEWARE / Do Not Leave This Space. And though the sign lacked specificity of what, exactly, she should have been wary, she stood dutifully in place, never pushing her foot past any of the square’s edges.

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She feels awkward because she’s wearing a wig



By Zerri Trosper

Although she is a black woman, in a room full of other young black women, she feels awkward because she’s wearing a wig. Earlier, after her stylist finished working her magic, she commented on just how much she loved this syk blue colored wig and all of its curly fullness. In the present, standing in this room with all of these beautiful black women, with their neat braids and finely pressed hair, her hands instinctively reach towards the curls in the sky, feeling like an impostor of beauty, like too much of her expression was being shown. Out of the heavens, another girl with a half shaved head approaches, “I love your hair,” she comments, but doesn’t touch. “Thank you, I love yours too,” she responds, thinking to herself that, yes, indeed, this is my hair. 

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Young black women feeling awkward
AALCI 2020

Feeling an imposter surrounded by faces that look like yours



By Ivana Onubogu 

they were excited to be here, laid out their clothes before the first class—not because it mattered to them but they thought it might matter to someone else. now, in their seat thousands of miles away from anyone else, the familiar warning sweat prickled down their back and in their armpits. they spoke up, equal parts participation and avoidance, refusing to acknowledge their hands shaking on the track pad and their pulse blaring a disjointed rhythm in their neck. as their mouths moved they tracked each face on the screen for any sign those listening noticed that they were different, strange, other. the screen faces revealed nothing but they filled in the blank anyway— low voice, full of themself, closed off, every beat of their heart counted off another impossible claim. finally the next screen face spoke and everything unclenched; they felt like they had run a mile too fast, they felt dizzy. it was intoxicating sometimes to be surrounded by faces that look like yours and feel an imposter anyhow.

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Young black women feeling awkward



We recently discussed an episode of Issa Rae's web series Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl. The episode and series led us to talk about folks who feel out of place even in places with folks like themselves.

The fellows are producing short write-ups about young black women feeling awkward in a room full of other black women, folks seemingly like themselves.


Feeling an imposter surrounded by faces that look like yours by Ivana Onubogu
She feels awkward because she’s wearing a wig by Zerri Trosper
She was made to feel as if her disposition was excessive by Dawson Johnson
She Doesn’t Fit In by Victoria L. Green

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Wednesday, June 24, 2020

My spy character’s mission


Victoria L. Green

My spy character’s mission would be to point out and take down corrupt government officials, as well as to expose the cures and research the government has been harboring about America’s biggest diseases (especially diseases that disproportionately affect minorities) like cancer, HIV/AIDS, and COVID-19. My story will not be a love story about a woman and a man, but rather a love story about a woman and the health and safety of her people.

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The judgements of the audience




By  Ivana Onubogu

The opening scene of American Spy is not only thrilling, but a perfect shot of the tensions of Marie being a government intelligence agent and a Black woman. Given the opportunity to replicate such a scene, I would begin the story with the black female protagonist in a potentially incriminating situation. Effectively, this opening scene should communicate that the protagonist’s trustworthiness is uncertain and that it is the audience that must take up spy work to uncover the protagonist’s motivation. Resting on Marie’s assertion that all spies are ‘liars or snitches,’ I would lean into the possibility of the protagonist being a liar so that when all things come to pass, the judgements of the audience may prove to be them snitching on themselves.

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