The news this week was very 2017, but the internet seemed almost dreamy. Highlights: Rihanna is changing the beauty industry, Google Maps is kinda scary, Vice has a sexual harassment issue (as do most places, probably), we are starting to love Tonya Harding again (?!), we have failed Puerto Rico, Black intelligencia is going crazy, and Donald Trump is still an asshole.
1. BuzzFeed: Why Rihanna’s Red Lipstick Line Is So Groundbreaking
In September Rihanna released her makeup line Fenty Beauty. Unlike other makeup lines, Fenty Beauty focuses on darker skin tones that are typically underrepresented, if at all, in other makeup lines. Rihanna’s inclusive approach to her makeup line has turned the beauty industry on its head and redefining contemporary beauty standards. Rihanna has always been ahead of her time and way too good for us.
2. Hyperallergic: The Quintessential Millennial Romance Album
This album is so dreamy. I have cannot stop listening to it. 19 year-old singer Khalid’s debut album, American Teen, really is millennial romance album, faded and dusted in millennial pink. Like the ironic color, that is essentially a non-color, American Teen is comfortable being what it is: an uncategorizable entity navigating, chilling in, and reflecting upon the world that created it.
3. Village Voice: More Evidence That Fela Kuti Was a F–king Genius
It is true! Nigerian singer Fela is the subject of Erykah Badu’s new Fela: Vinyl Box Set 4. Badu’s project couldn’t be more timely in our political climate. Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka described the impact of Fela’s work as “both salvation from and an echo of [Nigerians] anguish, frustrations, and suppressed aggression. The Black race was the beginning and end of knowledge and wisdom, [Fela] life mission to effect a mental and physical liberation of the race.”
4. Justin Obeirne: Google Maps’s Moat
I love Google and the internet but it is also super creepy. Over the past few years, Google has used satellite images to create buildings and structures on google maps with extreme accuracy. The creation of these structures is outpacing the Google street view car. Soon, Google will have all of our information, if it does not already, and will be the best architecture firm in the world. Sorry, Frank Gehry.
5. The New York Times: At Vice, Cutting-Edge Media and Allegations of Old-School Sexual Harassment
The New York Times is all about taking on sexual harassment this year. Their recent focus: Vice Media, a brash news company that largely targets millennials. Unlike most allegations to come out post-Weinstein, many of the men accused of sexual harassment at Vice are in their 20s, 30s, and 40s. Rape culture is real. We can’t expect it to die off with a generation.
6. Dazed: I, Tonya and the crucifixion of female public figures
Is Tonya Harding’s biopic, I, Tonya, a game changer? Women are attacked for their image more than men, and can’t get away with as much bullshit. We need to hold men accountable for their actions, but that does not mean that we cannot callout women who do bad things as well. Currently, this is happening most frequently with white women who do racist things, and do not understand their privilege. I’m fine with that.
7. New York Magazine: Maria’s Bodies
The real death toll from hurricane Maria (not the Trumpian one) is reaching ever closer to that of hurricane Katrina. Many in Puerto Rico are still without power, yet that is not part of our standard news cycle, and most in the continental US seem to have forgotten about it. Hurrican Maria was a natural disastur, but its enduring effect is due to our lack of support for Puerto Rico.
8. Boston Review: Coates and West in Jackson
Last Week The Guardian published a piece by Cornel West calling Ta-Nehasi Coates “the neoliberal face of the black freedom struggle.” Black intelligencia is going crazy right now. It is an interesting critique on how West views that Coates supports a capitalist, imperialist agenda vis a vis the Obamas, but does seem to gloss over the main points of Coates’ work. Many are reacting in defensive of their favorite black public intellectual, but others are taking time to reflect on the nuanced arguments of two titans of our time.
9. Chicago Tribune: What happens next with the Republican tax plan, month by month
Donald Trump had his first legislative victory and signined the GOP tax bill, which was was voted, with late night additions and handwritten notes, into law. Here is what you need to know about how it might affect you in the coming months.
10. The Independent: J20 protest trial latest: Anti-Trump activists found not guilty and avoid lengthy prison sentences
On Donald Trump’s inauguration day, January 20, 2017, nearly 200 protesters were arrested and many were charged with trying to incite a riot, amongst other things. Other protesters were not arrested on inauguration day, but were later charged with political conspiracy charges. The first round of J20 protesters were found not guilty on all charges. Let’s hope it goes this well for the rest of the protestors!
*All images taken from reference articles*
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