In 2013, CaShawn Thompson took to twitter and started promoting the idea of the resilience of Black girls being akin to “magic” via the now popularized hashtag #BlackGirlsAreMagic. In the face of constant and extreme social and institutional adversity, this social media movement has helped highlight moments where their existence has been resistance. Here’s to more of that, always.
To keep it real: “self-care” on this campus is an overused buzzword constantly conflated with the phrase “work hard, play hard.” For example, after a brutal finals week, maybe you decide to do something grandiose, such as study abroad somewhere. This is a commonly “accepted” notion of self-care that will not face scrutiny from others. You adhered to the standards of toxic workaholic syndrome, drunk on self-sacrifice, in pursuit of the highest GPA, the most competitive internship and baddest-ass resume. You are “deserving” of your extravagant engagement with “self-care” because you indentured yourself into the normalization of suffering that validates that you are not a waste of space on campus. While this may work for some students, I am convinced that this binary is not for everyone, and especially not for structurally marginalized students (such as myself).
— Brittney Enin,
UC Berkeley extroverted, #BlackWomxnMagical, fifth-year student majoring in public health with an emphasis on structural equity and racial justice. Contact her on twitter @NerdQween
I grew up poor.
Mind the language: poor. This term is different from phrases such as “low-income,” “under-resourced” and even “underprivileged” (in socioeconomic terms). Other terms were created for various reasons, some to translate an experience to the more elite and uninformed, some to linguistically remedy social ills forced upon people against their will by society. In my case, this word and what it connotes — little to no money, inability to become socially mobile on one’s own, broke — most accurately describes my upbringing. Most of my life experiences which have usually only dreamed of in the minds of the more well-off were real to me. Thus, I respectively identify as a ‘poor student’ and often find myself, so to speak, torn between two worlds in such an elite institution as UC Berkeley.
— E’Niyah Wilson,
UC Berkeley third year student studying healing narratives for people of color, sociology and African American studies
I am afraid of the direction we are heading in when it comes to people of color being represented on TV.
There’s a clear difference between having characters of color and investing in characters of color. To invest in people of color is to dedicate oneself to depicting our individual narratives — creating narratives that make us three-dimensional as opposed to the white noise we’ve been marginalized to for so long. Recently, there has been a massive increase in shows that actually invest in POC characters.
— Symone Campbell,
UC Berkeley rising junior and intended English major