From the English Dept. Handle

English dept. chair came to chat it up with an out going brotha. I once flirted with the idea of teaching a Black Lit course in his dept.

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Domination and the White Gaze

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Black thought and Black Studies ponder the realities of modern colonial aims. In my readings of CLR, Du Bois, Hall, hooks, Collins, and so on — I too am forced to glance and consider my identity and the identities of others. In the end, this is what academics do as we contemplate 21st century realities. Often such are predicated by past actions. My reflection here is nothing new, nor is it revolutionary. But, it is a baseline for conversations. Can Black people be Black in a world seen through the lens of the white gaze? Must Black people code switch to allow white comfort? What about women and their day-to-day reality in this patriarchal world? Women of color face the greatest threat as they are faced with challenging multiple systems. Such systems (the aggressor) aim to frame women — but particularly women of color in a powerless state.

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The notion of domination has been in constant operation and on my mind. That sense of abject reality for me as a Black man who will always be dominated by whiteness. My intersectional privileges allows for some fortitude (I am male), but the other half of me — my Black self — has and will continue to be imprisoned by the power structure of race (I am Black). This white gaze that decides my fate is the constant narrative of a ubiquitous force that pits Black people against Black people. Hence — Black intra-racial alliance is a myth. Black folk suffocate because of fear. Often this is due to domination and insecurity. Black ally ship might not wholly exist. The intra-racial dissonance is drafted by white domination (jobs, promotion, health care, debt, retirement, where you live, wealth, relationships, etc). I have experienced this. Many of us have. You know that feeling when a Black person rips your heart apart due to their complicity with domination. This knot in my stomach reminds me of the need for interracial solidarity and working class unity. But it also serves as a reminder regarding who makes decisions. Who holds power? And often, how the power brokers do not always listen. A have no power. I lack the wealth to take care of my Black parents. They lacked the wealth to take care of me. King faced this. Du Bois faced this: A feeing of years of betrayal by Black complicity and silence.

Bishop Curry

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There are those standing up for their faith — and truth, and not the idolatry of politics as God. Bishop Curry, who stated that “…. We are Christian leaders bearing moral witness to the teachings of our faith in the public square…. As citizens we want our government to reflect our values. As a Bishop I believe we should follow the teachings of Jesus — who taught us to love God and love our neighbor…. The normalization of lying presents a profound moral danger to the fabric of society. We believe authoritarian political leadership is a theological danger that threatens democracy and the common good — and we will resist it.”

In truth, I never heard of him until the royal wedding; however, since I have watched him protest in front of the White House demanding justice and advocating for human rights. I am one who hates complacency. I have committed myself to defending the weak: homelessness, marginalized, etc.

Let us dedicate each and everyday to being better human beings.

Award

I was caught off guard by this award today for my volunteer service work. I am honored by the “office” and my Brooks colleagues for such recognition. Working at a boarding school does not leave much room for this kind of work — especially when you teach on a Saturday. However, we have managed to spend a great deal of time each Sunday cooking and organizing and prepping food at a soup kitchen.

Award

Brooks Students of Color

 

While I am excited about my new job, what Brooks Black Student Union did in wishing me off was just great. Our annual cookout today was emotional. Brooks students of color have been very good to me and to each other, and I have enjoyed them during my 5 year tenure at Brooks. It is important that people of color support each other. Thank you BSU, Alianza Latina, and Shaunielle for a great day.

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Great News

I was excited to learn that our work has done so well.

John and I spent a great deal of time thinking about the historical thinking skills teachers and students will be able to explore in their classes with this work. It does a great job forcing historical content to drive the needed skills. I dedicated it to my parents, brother, and wife — Janette Carson​. I am a lifelong teacher who spends hours thinking about my students and how I can help them. I am not perfect — but man do I try.

Here are some reviews:

“One of the biggest problems teachers will face in teaching the redesigned AP European History course is finding quality resources to reinforce information and to get students to think and make connections. There are numerous examples in this book and I think it will only enhance student learning. Historical thinking skills can be challenging for students and this breaks it down and makes it much simpler for students to understand so that they will be more successful in both the course and on the AP Exam itself.”

Tina Gentry, History Teacher, Spring High School

“Carson and Irish provide an excellent resource in helping students master the historical thinking skills needed to reach their full potential in AP European History. It provides educators with numerous resources to help implement and build these skills with their students.”

Tara Gruber, AP World History, AP European History, Allen High School

“This new workbook doesn’t just explain the required historical thinking skills necessary for success on the AP European History exam. It shows the student and teacher how to apply those skills effectively throughout the four periods of the course curriculum. Using specific examples and clear graphic organizers, the authors have revolutionized the way study skills can be taught, giving the student a clear idea of how to use each skill and how the skills interrelate with and complement one another.”

Pamela Wolfe, History Department Chair, Yeshiva of Greater Washington, Former member of the European History Development Committee

“A workbook, such as this, would prove incredibly invaluable to those AP students looking to demonstrate, refine and improve their expertise. I am confident in saying this workbook will do an exceptional job at addressing the new AP European History curriculum and what it entails.”

Michael J. Poirier, Social Studies Teacher, Nashoba Regional High School

“An invaluable and practical teaching tool that covers all the important Historical Thinking Skills for AP European History. An enormously valuable guide from two highly regarded veteran AP European History teachers.”

Jay Harmon, AP History Teacher, Houston Christian High School

Vincent Harding

 

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There are academics who are social justice folk, and social justice folk who are academics. I am being a bit ambiguous, but Vincent Harding fits this. I noted his passing years ago here, as he continues to move throughout my thoughts. Here is one of my heroes. Yes I desire to be like him in so many ways. It was a pleasure discussing him with my students. As I noted to my students, we remember Harding because he was radical. He was brilliant. His sense of morality was good — and true. He was a great teacher. I have learned so much from this mountain of a person.