Archive for February, 2010

Invitation: East Bay Book Discussion Group

Posted in Events, Transnat'l Feminism/Solidarity, Uncategorized on February 23, 2010 by skyeviewtraveler

Spring 2010

Are you ready to get a jump start on your spring/summer reading? Are you interested in cultivating a transnational feminist perspective while exploring issues pertaining to imperialism, racial/gender oppression, and the economic violence of capitalist globalization?  Would you like to do so in the company of women, in a relaxed, non-competitive, non-academic and welcoming environment?   Are you from the old school of feminist consciousness-raising–kitchen table stylee? Do you simply miss the camaraderie and fun of exchanging ideas with women readers and critical thinkers from diverse backgrounds?

If yes, then you are in luck!  Skyeview blogger Skye Ward is seeking participants for a book discussion group for one title only: Activist Scholarship: Antiracism, Feminism, and Social Change, edited by: Julia Sudbury and Margo-Okazawa-Rey. This is an IMPORTANT book for activists, critical thinkers, conjure and warrior women.

The proposed timing is a 3-hour discussion session for each chapter, from mid-March through April, tentatively Sundays 2-5pm in Oakland.  The actual dates and time will be determined by the group.

If interested please send an email to


Brief Description

This book explores what happens when scholars create active engagements between the academy and communities of resistance. In so doing, it suggests a new direction for antiracist and feminist scholarship, rejecting models of academic radicalism that remain unaccountable to grassroots social movements and exploring the community and the academy as interlinked sites of struggle.

[Paradigm Press]

Full Description

Come Make We Talk, Come Make We Analyze

Posted in Events, Resources, Transnat'l Feminism/Solidarity on February 17, 2010 by skyeviewtraveler


Activist Scholarship Book Launch (2/18)

Decolonizing the University (2/26-27)

Difficult Dialogues II: Call For Proposals (3/1)

Lesbians in the 70’s : Call For Proposals (3/15)


Barbara Smith wrote:

“I believe that another serious roadblock to activism is the ideological content of much current theory, especially in the academy.  Black lesbians who have been in school recently have often been exposed to the airless, inaccessible abstractions that dominate literary studies, women’s studies, and queer studies.  The varieties of academic theory that are most popular have little to say about the inhuman material conditions that motivate people to want to make change…Very little is said about why and under what conditions people begin to move, about how successful movements happen.  One criterion I often rely upon for assessing the revolutionary content of ideas and actions is to ask the question originally posed by the visionary poet and activist Sonia Sanchez, which is, “But how do it free us?” Sanchez is asking about collective strategies, not individualized solutions.  When most popular theoretical models are interrogated in this way, they do not have much to offer.”

The Truth That Never Hurts: Writings on Race, Gender, and Freedom. Pg. 172 Barbara Smith.  Rutgers University Press.


Revolutionary Tea Party You who know what the past has been You who work in the present tense You who see through to the future Come mek wi work together Come sit here with me An mek we drink tea A mek wi talk A mek wi analyse You who’ve been burned by vanguardism Come mek wi give you little nurturing Come sit awile A mek wi drink tea A mek wi talk A mek wi stategise You wo believe in the future And in transforming by your labour Let the future be in good favour We who create the wealth of the world and only get scrapings from them in control When wi siddown and look at the system Check out the way that things have been Wi haffi say, wi haffi say It rank how the system stay Wi haffi say, wi haffi say The system in a really bad way A way it a defend You who see for peace a future You who understand the past You who create with yu sweat from the heart Let’s talk. Let’s make art. Let’s love. Dance Rebel in the streets if that’s the beat Rebel in the streets if that’s the beat Demonstrate protest chant You who see for us a future Come sit here with me Mek we drink tea Let’s talk Mek wi analyse Mek wi strategise Mek we work together


Posted in Culture, Resources, Transnat'l Feminism/Solidarity on February 14, 2010 by skyeviewtraveler

Conditions Five: The Black Women’s Issue (1979)

One of the greatest gifts of Black feminism to ourselves has been to make it a little easier simply to be Black and female.  [Barbara Smith]

Sweet Water: Celebrating Queer Black Female Heritage

Posted in Culture, Events, Transnat'l Feminism/Solidarity on February 13, 2010 by skyeviewtraveler


RESPECT DUE to the San Francisco GLBT Historical Society & Sankofa Events for hosting this standing room only literary and musical homage to Black lesbian culture on 2/13. Monica Anderson and Jaki Lee were the principal organizers, however it appeared to me that several if not all of the artists contributed their talents as a labor of love.  No divas, no inflated egos and no half-stepping–100% pure love.

In order of performance the artists and hosts included Monica Anderson, Jaki Lee, Nahi Ode Mata Akinola Auseti Brewer, KSuzanne Massey Sonjhai Meggette, Ryan, Sanda Burch, Enid Stern, Rasheedah Mwongozi, Chavez A. Vasquez, Mona Webb and Larena Burno.

First African Heritage Worldwide 10-day Vipassana Meditation Course (India)

Posted in Culture, Travelogues on February 11, 2010 by skyeviewtraveler

Exciting news!

Documentary filmmaker Aishah Shahidah Simmons recently returned from a 6-week visit to India.  During her trip she participated in a seminal gathering of Black practitioners of Vipassana Meditation.  For a limited time selected photographs from her collection are available for viewing in her public access album on Facebook.

Aishah has over 700 photographs and about 14 hours of footage from which she will create a documentary about the 10-day Vipassana Meditation Course for People of African Heritage Worldwide.

Of special note was the presence of two distinguished women of African descent. Victoria Robertson an African-American is a Senior Assistant Teacher in this tradition and one of two teachers who co-conducted the course in Mumbai.  Mama Sila a Kenyan who resides in England is also an Assistant Teacher in the tradition though she did not teach this particular course.  Mama Sila also holds the distinction as  being the visionary behind the First African Heritage Worldwide 10-day Vipassana Meditation Course .  Mama Sila appears in the photograph below with Aishah and Kiren the Dhamma Pattana manager.

A country breakdown of the participants include Ethiopia with the largest number of attendees, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Egypt, Ghana, England, US, Canada, Laos, Mongolia, Singapore, Russia, India, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Kenya, Seychelles, South Africa – all the participants were not of African descent but Black folks were a significant population at Dhamma Pattana.

Photo credits from left to right:

Nilesh Shah (photos #1-3) Documenting a seminal event!

Aishah Shahidah Simmons (photo #4) Aishah, Kiren and Mama Sila

Pattana Dhamma Center Photo Gallery


Bonus Links

Skyeview Gallery – India

Post Mumbai Ruminations

Travelogue – Bombay

Bay Area Wellness: Skye Picks

Posted in Resources, Uncategorized on February 9, 2010 by skyeviewtraveler

Natural Rhythm “Back-to-Life” Massage

I’ve been going to the Healing Hut for over 10 years.  One would be hard pressed to find a more balanced and beautiful sistah than Farcia DeTole-Medearis.  Amongst other things she is a Liberian roots woman, trained massage therapist, dance performer and N.I.A. fitness instructor.  Her integrated approach includes various massage techniques, chakra alignment and an excellent grasp of human anatomy.

First-timers should be sure to inquire about introductory and email club reduced rates.


Natural Rhythm Healing Hut 438 Estudillo Avenue. San Leandro, CA 94577

Kabuki Hot Springs Communal Baths

The women only days remain the BEST bargain in town.  For only $22-$25 patrons have full access to a spacious communal bath area with nice amenties. And, best of all patrons can stay ALL day/evening!  I especially like Wednesdays because it seems that’s when the Asian and Black sistern show up in numbers.  If you generate an appetite during your visit there are plenty of restaruants/cafes on Fillmore Street including Sundays.

The Foot Spa and Tea Bar

I like this place because they offer authentic Chinese massage in the Grand Lake neighborhood.  The Foot Spa is located only a few doors down from the Sacred Well metaphyical store.

First-timers be sure to inquire about their introductory and grand opening prices.


The Foot Spa and Tea Bar 582 Grand Avenue Oakland, CA

The Sacred Well 536 Grand Avenue Oakland, CA


Last But Not Least

Nothing is more economical than a magnesium sulphate crystal bath at home!  Some spas charge exorbitant fees for what is essentially a household product.

Bonus Link

Ways to Use Epsom Salt for Healthy Living

Around Town: Yoshi’s Oakland

Posted in Culture, Events on February 4, 2010 by skyeviewtraveler

Meshell Ndegeocello Presents: The Best of Bitter & More

Feb 16-Feb 17, 2010/8pm & 10pm shows $24


Valentines Day Weekend with Mavis Staples

Feb 12-Feb 14, 2010/Friday and Satruday/8pm & 10pm shows $40

7pm show $40