Joy of Resistance airs on the 1st & 3rd Wednesday of the month at 9-10 PM (EST) at WBAI, 99.5 FM (Tri-Sate area, East Coast, USA); streams at stream.wbai.org. Follow us on twitter at @joyofresistance. Archived for 90 days at archive.wbai.org To pledge support for WBAI, (212) 209-2950 or give2wbai.org
Beyonce has written about striving for gender equality (The Shriver Report) and said that she identifies as a feminist. The song “Flawless” from her latest album also includes a recording of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie‘s TED talk, We Should All Be Feminists . However, in another song on the same album, Beyonce’s husband Jay-Z seems to mock domestic violence by repeating: “Eat the Cake, Anna Mae”–referring to a scene from Tina Turner’s autobiographical film What’s Love Got to do with It? , where Ike Turner forces Tina to eat cake, in a show of male dominance.
On Wednesday, June 18th, 9-10 PM, Joy of Resistance will explore the following questions: What are the images of African American women portrayed by the music industry–and does Beyonce conform to or break that mold? What constitutes being a feminist and does this description fit Beyonce?
The show will also tackle recent highly debated critiques of the singer, made by reknowned feminist scholar-activist bell hooks, as part of a forum on May 6 at The New School which included hooks calling Beyoncé a “terrorist” (in the context of how the media terrorizes women into conformity).
Guests will be: Christa Bell, a member of the Real Colored Girls blog, who co-authored “The Problem with Beyhive Bottom Bitch Feminism,” (a critique of Beyonce’s media role); and Nikeeta Slade, a women’s and queer rights activist, grad student in Pan-African Studies and an editor of Red Wedge Magazine who has written on Black women and intersectionality .
The segment will be co-hosted by Amanda Alcantara* and Lorena Ambrosio**, Joy of Resistance members who are making their debut producing a featured segment for this show. Fran Luck is the Executive Producer of Joy of Resistance.
The program will also contain our worldwide feminist news roundup, clips of the May 6 forum Are You Still a Slave: Liberating the Black Body and Beyoncé’s music.
On May 6, “Ain’t I a Woman?” author Gloria Jean Watkins, who goes by pen name ‘bell hooks’, was at a New School Forum discussing the subject: ‘liberating the black female body’. There she tackled the subject of the famous singer and her effect on young girls. “Would we be at all interested in Beyonce if she wasn’t so rich? Because I don’t think you can separate her class, power, and the wealth from people’s fascination with her, that here is a young black woman who is so incredibly wealthy,” she said.
Then she added “wealthy is what so many young people fantasize, dream about, sexualize, eroticize, and one could argue that even more than her body, it’s what that body stands for…The body of desire fulfilled, that is, wealth, fame, celebrity, all the things that so many people in our culture are lusting for.”
Joy of Resistance: Multicultural Feminist Radio @ WBAI airs on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month at 9-10 PM. We cover the ongoing worldwide struggle of women for full equality and human rights. You can follow us on twitter at twitter.com/joyofresistance or @joyofresistance. You can follow or read out blog at joyofresistance.wordpress.com.
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Footnotes: bios of guests and producers
*Amanda Alcantara is a writer, a journalist, and a community organizer. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Journalism & Media Studies and Political Science from Rutgers University where she helped relaunch the Latin American Womyn’s Organization. She writes at her personal blog RadicalLatina.com. Amanda grew up in the Dominican Republic and currently lives in Brooklyn, NY.
**Lorena Ambrosio is a former activist with Occupy Wall Street and was one of the organizers of its Feminist General Assemblies; she is a member of the radical singing/spoken word group Mahina Movement and has worked with National Women’s Liberation. She is an activist on Peruvian issues and lives in New Jersey.
***Fran Luck is Executive Producer of the Joy of Resistance radio show. She founded The Street Harassment Project in 2000 and the Joy of Resistance in 2002. She has worked with National Women’s Liberation and Redstockings Allies and Veterans. She is a lifelong feminist and a former housing activist on the Lower East Side of Manhattan.
***Christa Bell is an award-winning spoken word poet, performance artist and feminist culture creator from Seattle,Washington. She is an MA candidate in Cultural Studies with a designation in Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies at the University of Washington Bothell, a member of the Women Who Rock and Fembot collectives and a founding member of Real Colored Girls. She is a National Poetry Slam Champion and her work includes the one-woman show CoochieMagik: A Spoken Word Musical Comedy, commissioned by the National Performance Network, 1001 Holy Names for Coochie, a 24-hour endurance mantra and performance art installation, which premiered at the Seattle Art Museum as part of the opening events for Elles: Women Artists From The Centre Pompidou; and SHEism: The Woman Worship Workshop, a performance- lecture and workshop that explores the spiritual politics of female bodies. Her work has been featured on National Public Radio, as a TEDx Talk, and on afterellen.com and she has performed, by invitation, at over 100 universities, colleges, festivals and performance venues internationally. Her performance work is primarily concerned with feminist imaginings of the divine as well as how women’s spiritual self-esteem impacts their participation in the political processes that govern their lives. Her research interests include black feminist theory and genealogies, feminist cultural production, performance studies and cultural intersections of race, gender, culture and theology. Her current performance work is scheduled to be included in the Whitney Museum of American Art: 2014 Biennial as part of HOWDOYOUSAYYAMINAFRICAN, a global collective. Her essay “Shall We Begin, Then?” a meditation on future/present ancestral bodies, will be featured in the 2014 Biennial catalogue.
*****Nikeeta Slade attended the University of North Texas where she majored in Anthropology and minored in African-American Studies. She is a currently a graduate student in the Pan-African Studies Master’s program at Syracuse University where her research interests include neoliberalism, specifically de-industrialization’s impact on black queer communities in Syracuse. As an undergraduate student, Nikeeta was actively involved in environmental activism with Rising Tide against fracking in North Texas. As a graduate student she is involved in an array of struggles in the Syracuse area but her main areas are women’s rights and queer rights. Nikeeta is also an editor for Red Wedge Magazine.