It’s a new month and the HOT TOPICS are here!! As always a few goodies for you to put on your calendar, add to your grocery list, cue up in your AirPods, dig into and find some more info about, or to make your coffee table stand out!! Check out this week’s hot topics below:
Leave me a voicemail… New Exhibition to honor Black and Brown lives that were taken at the hands of police brutality. Created by Iranian-American artist, filmmaker and Even/Odd founder, Mohammad Gorjestani, in collaboration with curator Klaudia Ofwona Draber and art director Neil Hamamoto, “1-800 Happy Birthday” sets out “to transcend the subject matter to new channels both physical and digital and have it live in aesthetic and community in places born from the culture it represents”. Originally as an online voicemail project, callers could leave a message for people who were unjustly killed by law enforcement on their birthdays. Wow!! The power of a message. The exhibition will be on view at WORTHLESSSTUDIOS (7 Knickerbocker Ave. Brooklyn, NY 11237) till January 16th, 2023.
Need a morning pick me up or something for your late night study grind?? Well hip-hop artist and entrepreneur Jadakiss is teaming up with his father and son to bring you the Black-owned coffee brand, Kiss Café . Described as “created with honesty and accessibility” Kiss Café seeks to highlight a legacy of three generations that bring you premium coffee. Now this is right up my alley!! Cannot wait to make my purchase!!
A.S. degree program in Cannabis Studies….Soon students at Olive Harvey College (a predominately Black community college) will be able to get an Associate Degree in “Applied Cannabis Studies a first of its kind in the state of Illinois. The degree was designed for students to gain an advantage in the cannabis industry and offer pathways to acquire the proper licensing. As noted by the president of Olive-Harvey College, Dr. Kimberly Hollingsworth, “Olive-Harvey College has always been a leader in the study of cannabis agriculture and operations because of the exponential job growth in the industry and due to its numerous upward mobility opportunities in the mainstream economy.” For more information about the program, see here.
For all my Theater folks…Check out the 20th-anniversay of Suzan-Lori Parks Broadway revival of Topdog/Underdog starring Corey Hawkins and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II. Directed by Kenny Leon, Topdog/Underdog is a “play that chronicles the adult lives of two African-American brothers as they cope with poverty, racism, work, women, and their troubled upbringings. Lincoln lives with Booth, his younger brother, after being thrown out by his wife.”
As noted by Parks about the play, “I think the meaning of the play isn’t just confined to a man’s experience… I think it’s about what it means to be family and, in the biggest sense, the family of man, what it means to be connected with somebody else.”
You can see Topdog/Underdog at the John Golden Theatre (252 W 45th St. New York, NY 10036) till January 15th, 2023. Purchase tickets here.
As we prepare for the much anticipated sequel Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, writer Ta-Nehisi Coates is giving fans a little taste of the comic book mythos. Set to debut on November 3rd, the “Wakanda Forever: The Official Black Panther Podcast,” hosted by Coates, will bring fans into the making of the larger-than-life sequel.
The podcast will be a 6-episode series that features interviews with director Ryan Coogler, producer Kevin Feige, cast member Angela Bassett, and much more. The first three episodes will premiere on November 3rd (in advance of the film) with the remaining episodes dropping weekly in January 2023 connecting to the 5-year anniversary of the first film, Black Panther.
“Wakanda Forever: The Official Black Panther Podcast,” is a production of Proximity Media in partnership with Marvel Studios, Marvel Entertainment, and The Walt Disney Studios. The series is produced by Paola Mardo. Executive Producers are Ryan Coogler, Zinzi Coogler, Sev Ohanian, and Paola Mardo.
Fall is here!! Another one of my favorite times of the year!! Nothing like the crisp breeze blowing, the crunchy leaves, the sweaters and knee-high boots, and the early nights! And as always why not have a good book to curl up and read. Well I got you covered!! Check out this month’s book recommendations below:
find her. keep her ~Renaada Williams
Bittering the Wound ~Jacqui Germain
Black Women Will Save the World: An Anthem ~April Ryan
Love in the Age of Dragons ~Fatima R. Henson
Running to Fall ~Kalisha Buckhanon
Mr. Loverman ~Bernardine Evaristo
And remember you can always go back and check out the previous month’s list and past recommendations in the “Resource” section of the website!!
“I really don’t think life is about the I-could-have-beens. Life is only about the I-tried-to-do. I don’t mind the failure, but I can’t imagine that I’d forgive myself if I didn’t try.” ~Nikki Giovanni
Happy Monday!! Boy do I have some goodies to share with you all this week!! So let’s dive right on in:
For all my ATL folks…The High Museum of Art is hosting the first museum survey dedicated to photographer Deana Lawson. From this global lens “working primarily in photography, Lawson investigates and challenges conventional representations of Black identities and bodies.” The Deanna Lawson exhibition opens on Oct. 7, for more details go to HighMuseum.org .
The Dutch Government has created a fund to apologize for their historic role in slavery. From 1596 to 1829, the Dutch took part in transporting nearly a half a million Africans across the Atlantic Ocean. The fund is set to be announced after the nation officially apologizes for its role by the end of this year or the beginning of 2023. It is said that the fund may be as large as 200 million euros. Additionally, European Central Bank Governing Council member Klaas Knot, who is also president of the bank, addressed his apology to the descendants of enslaved people and set up a fund to finance projects worth 5 million euros over the next 10 years in the Netherlands, Suriname and the Caribbean.
Ben & Jerry is rebranding their “Change is Brewing” flavor as a way to help protect voting rights and encourage young Black voter turnout ahead of the Nov. 8 midterm elections. The rebranded ice cream is being distributed at historically Black colleges and universities and in large cities and rural communities across Southern states as part of the Black Voters Matter Fund’s “We Won’t Black Down” tour, which kicked off Sept. 14.
Michelle Obama Portraitist Amy Sherald is set unveil her first European show!! Sherald’s collection of paintings titled, The World We Make is set to be housed at Hauser & Wirth London from October 12 to December 23. Through her paintings, Sherald sees them as “a place to reflect. I want it to be as open, expansive and universal in a sense. I want my work to be a gift to Black people.”
Meet Princess Isis Lang, the creator of the “Cardinal Divas” at the University of Southern California. Lang, is currently a musical theater major at the University of Southern California (USC), and the creator of the school’s first-ever majorette team. The Cardinal Divas made their formal debut at the USC vs. Fresno State football game on September 17th. As noted by Lang, “you can look forward to seeing us at these home games on the big screen, showing young Black girls that they can do anything that they think to do.”
And lastly, just as the football season gets to rolling, we get some major news about Super Bowl LVII...Rihanna, with style and grace, has officially confirmed that she will be performing at Super Bowl LVII!! The 57th Super Bowl will take place on February 12, 2023, at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.
Family and Friends….I got some exciting news for you!! I have a chapter featured in the latest collectionTeaching with Comics: Empirical, Analytical and Professional Experiences (2022) (Palgrave Macmillan) !!
Here is a brief description of the book:
This edited collection analyses the use of comics in primary and secondary education. The editors and contributors draw together global research to examine how comics can be used for critical inquiry within schools, and how they can be used within specific disciplines. As comics are beginning to be recognised more widely as an important resource for teaching, with a huge breadth of topics and styles, this interdisciplinary book unites a variety of research to analyse how learning is ‘done’ with and through comics. The book will be of interest to educational practitioners and school teachers, as well as students and scholars of comic studies, education and social sciences more broadly.
Extra! Extra! Read all about it!! Got a new addition to the site for you all!! Everyday I find myself learning the latest trends in fashion, getting the latest news in media, uncovering the next great memoir, new restaurant openings, and where I should be traveling to next. It’s also necessary that I share this news as I am a huge proponent of showcasing the joys and achievements of what is happening in the world especially as it pertains to Black and Brown folks!! So I figured, why not share these with you and share in the wealth…I’m calling it Dr. G’s Weekly Hot Topics!!
Each week, much like the trailer alerts, I will share some of the top news stories with you! Without further ado, let’s see what is on the docket this week!
Black Brewers are changing the Washington, DC landscape of craft beer!! To date DC has three Black-owned breweries, making up 20% of the city’s total of 15 (Sankofa Beer Company , Soul Mega , and Urban Garden Brewing ). Along with these breweries making their mark, DC Black beer fans can also bridge the brewery gap and build community through the Black Brew Movement. Our nation’s capital is shaping up to be another prime location for Black owned breweries. DC is truly taking a leading role with other Black-owned breweries in such places as Chicago, Los Angeles, Atlanta, and neighboring state Maryland. Who says representation does not matter in the beer game?!
For all my travelers near and far, there is a new Black-owned travel bottle company, “Ries Beauty“!! Looking for a refillable, TSA-friendly bottle that will not leak all over suitcase, ruining your good clothes…Ries Beauty is the product for you!! Founded by a Black-woman Megan Graham, who was once the beauty market director at Vogue, Graham has created the first reusable travel bottle and has partnered with Sephora to launch the product. As told to WWD by Graham, “Ries is built for women and people in the way that we truly travel. Historically the bottles in the beauty industry have been build on single-use, cheap, inexpensive virgin plastics—they’re not built for the functionality that Ries provides.” Ries is available now on Ries-Ries.com and Sephora.com
Now these are some things we ought to be talking about and sharing with the masses!! And make sure you stay tuned next week for more Hot Topics!!