Homecast is a podcast series recorded in quarantine in which creatives from around the world share their lived experiences of these unique circumstances. Creator Giacomo De Poli tells us why this collective diary was needed now more than ever.
Activist Beyoncé brings race issues to the fore in the US
Beyoncé’s latest video, Formation, and her show at the Super Bowl evoke the Black Panthers and have fuelled arguments about racism in the United States.
The video is set in Louisiana – the place where once African slaves were deported – where the hurricane Katrina has had dramatic consequences. The clip celebrates the role black women played in social justice movements like Black Lives Matter and recalls the increasingly frequent killings of black citizens. In the final scene, Beyoncé symbolically sinks a police car.
The video message echoed during the halftime show of the Super Bowl final, when Beyoncé sang Formation in front of 70,000 spectators. She performed with dancers in an X formation (an apparent tribute to Malcom X) who evoked the Black Panthers, a political (occasionally armed) movement of black people who fought against the government for self-defense in the ‘60s, and held a sign demanding “Justice for Mario Woods”, a coloured man who was killed last year.
The performance stirred immediate controversy in the media and among right-wingers. Some Fox reporters accused the pop icon of racism and hate speech against the police, comparing her performance to the KKK. Former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani said that “it was really outrageous that she used the platform to attack police officers, the people who protect her and protect us to keep us alive”. An anti-Beyoncé protest rally has also been planned outside the NFL headquarters.
According to the most critical Liberals, Queen Bey’s performance at the 2014 VMAs (the same year as she appeared on the cover of the Time as one of world’s top 100 most influential people) shouldn’t be considered a masterpiece of feminism. Her recent activist turn through the song Formation is interpreted as a consumerist strategy inspired in the race issue rather than a real action to raise people’s awareness.
Basically, besides celebrating negritude, Formation was specifically written to make profit (the demand for the tickets of her new tour has increased sharply), and it is addressed to that share of audience inclined to invest its money and political thoughts in a celebrity. Ironically, these are the same accuses against capitalism that the Black Panthers Party fought against. According to them, capitalism, indeed, perpetuated a system that oppressed and used the black culture.
Whether the artist’s moves are really good or not, celebrities such as Beyoncé and others, the CNN says, do well to show that fame can and should be used to push for social justice.
Time magazine’s 100 Women of the Year project sheds light on influential women’s stories, from Amelia Earhart to Greta Thunberg. A selection of some of the greats for International Women’s Day.
Leaving cliches behind, beauty and sexuality in old age are widely unexplored topics. Photographer Arianne Clément tells why she chose to shed light on this universe.
Un violador en tu camino – the rapist is you – is an anthem protesting the impunity of gender-based violence. It began in Chile and has become a global flash mob, bringing people to the streets and resonating all over the world.
The Oxford English Dictionary has chosen “climate emergency” as 2019’s Word of the Year because of its effectiveness in communicating a sense of urgency in the fight against global warming.
Filmmaker Dhondup Wangchen was imprisoned by the Chinese government for his documentary condemning the Tibetan condition. He tells us how he continues to fight for his people even after the traumas faced.
To mark the release of Anthropocene: The Human Epoch, we interviewed photographer and co-director Edward Burtynsky, who told us the story behind the documentary.
Snowflakes can be deceiving. Banksy transformed them from a marker of winter festivities into a symbol of the plague of air pollution in his mural Season’s greetings in Port Talbot, Wales.
Artist Jeff Hong imagined how Disney fairy tales’ characters would live in the real world: the result – or better the ending – is everything but happy.