Category Archives: Uncategorized

Mine the Tension Series: Reading Lucille Clifton in a Time of Trouble

This week, I read it Lucille Clifton’s The Book of Light. Toward the end of the collection, Clifton has several poems that explore the nuance of a single voice across several pages. I confess that as a reader and writer … Continue reading

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Mine The Tension Series: Turning Back to Poetry

I remember when I first started writing poetry. I might have been eight or so and struggling with rhyme and the ins and outs of violets. I do recall thinking that poetry had to have capital letters down the left … Continue reading

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Response from MAAH

Hi everyone! Thanks for signal boosting this particular issue. I did get a response from Diana Parcon at the Museum of African American History. Our exchange is below. Access is for everyone! *** Dear Dr. Pickens, On behalf of the … Continue reading

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Open Letter to Museum of African American History (Boston) & National Parks Service

To Whom It May Concern: I write to inform you of an unfortunate series of incidents at the Museum of African American History and the African Meeting House in Boston, Massachusetts on September 16, 2017. My colleagues and I brought … Continue reading

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Scholar Fierce: Access at Black Portraitures

Most conferences are not accessible for people with disabilities to present or attend. Access, for me, is about space for physically disabled people, mental space for folks who think differently, intellectual space to consider disability, and temporal space for folks … Continue reading

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Scholar Fierce: That Time When MLK Was on Vacation & Other Gasp-worthy Moments

I appreciate a failure to be respectable. Want to know why? Because. In a panel entitled “Activating Histories: Visualizing and Restaging the Archive,” I prepared to have a sobering experience about what it means to read an archive and what … Continue reading

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Scholar Fierce: You Will Not Out Do Black People, Florence/Firenze Edition

My main point in going to Florence was to attend the Black Portraitures conference, curated by colleagues at NYU Tisch School of the Arts. My excitement was two-fold. First, this had the serious, serious line-up of Black Studies scholars. In … Continue reading

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Sabbatical Notes: Figuring Out ‘Taking [My] Time’

When I was just finishing as a grad student, I had a conversation with a trusted colleague & friend. He had a note for me. Specifically, he thought that I was moving too fast. (I had finished the dissertation in … Continue reading

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Reflections on Cognitive Impairment, Marriage, & Children

A friend asked a question on FB about whether cognitively impaired people should be allowed to marry and have children. I wanted to answer this question privately for a wide variety of reasons. My response is long and certainly mitigated … Continue reading

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Sabbatical Notes: What Are You Going to Do?

If there is one question that strikes a bit of fear into many about sabbatical it is, “What are you going to do?” This question engenders anxiety for several reasons. First, sometimes I just don’t want to tell people. Second, … Continue reading

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