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A Review of Apartheid

After Nelson Mandela's recent death, the apartheid regime he fought against re-entered news headlines. Learn more about apartheid laws and what life was like in South Africa's racially stratified society with this overview.

Women Civil Rights Activists

Dolores Huerta, Ella Baker and Fannie Lou Hamer are among the many women who contributed to the fight for civil rights during the 1950s, '60s and '70s. Despite the sacrifices they made, women civil rights activists typically don't receive the same recognition that their male counterparts do. Celebrate their achievements during Women's History Month.  

Women Writers, Activists and Feminists
Race Relations Spotlight10

People magazine names Lupita Nyong'o as Most Beautiful

Wednesday April 23, 2014

In a move that's widely being hailed as groundbreaking,

People magazine chose actress Lupita Nyong'o to grace the cover of its "Most Beautiful" issue. Given that Nyong'o is a dark-skinned East African woman with short natural hair, People's choice for "Most Beautiful" certainly stands out. It contradicts the blonde-blue-eyed Western notion of conventional beauty and, as a result, the magazine is already drawing a backlash.

Commenters on the magazine's website argue that blondes such as Blake Lively or Jennifer Lawrence would have been better choices and that political correctness drove People to choose Nyong'o. I know I shouldn't be shocked, but I find it shocking that some people have such a narrow standard of beauty. I happen to think that Nyong'o is better looking than both Lawrence or Lively, but I also find blonde actress Diane Kruger to be very attractive. In today's diverse society, isn't there room for all kinds of beauty? Why does highlighting one example of beauty have to be a threat to conventional notions of beauty? Read More...

Jared Leto Describes Life in The South as Oppressive

Monday April 14, 2014

Actor Jared Leto has sparked a debate by criticizing life in the South during a recent interview with FourTwoNine magazine. Leto was born in Louisiana but grew up in various regions of the United States.

"We escaped early on," Leto said of his Southern roots. "It's very oppressive. ...We would go back for the summers and stay with our grandmother, though. So the culture was always there that we returned to." Read More...

Chinese-American Group Criticized For Affirmative Action Stance

Monday April 7, 2014

The affirmative action debate is typically framed as a black-white issue. In California, however, one of the nation's most diverse states, the affirmative action debate is seeing Chinese Americans square off against Latinos, not to mention fellow Asian Americans.

A constitutional amendment called SCA5 seeks to restore affirmative action in California where the practice has been banned in public universities and other government entities since 1996. While Latinos largely support the measure as do a number of Asian ethnic groups, a Chinese-American group called the 80-20 Initiative has come out strongly against the amendment, even suggesting that Asian Americans, who predominantly lean Democrat in the state, vote Republican because of the issue. The Chinese-American activists don't oppose affirmative action in hiring but in higher education. Read More...

Cesar Chavez Opens to Lackluster Reviews

Monday March 31, 2014

"Cesar Chavez," directed by Diego Luna and starring Michael Pena, America Ferrara and Rosario Dawson, opened in movie theaters nationwide on Friday. Despite the star-studded list of people involved in the film, the biopic debuted to pretty abysmal reviews. So, why didn't the critics like this film?

Film reviewers at the Washington Post, the New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle and more slammed the movie for not offering a three-dimensional portrait of Cesar Chavez. Instead, they said, the labor and civil rights leader's portrayal was saint-like. The landowners were portrayed as cartoonishly evil and greedy and the farm workers as entirely benevolent. Moreover, critics said, the viewers don't get a clear understanding of what inspired Chavez to become an activist for farm workers, take up the mantle of nonviolence, speak about it and more. Read More...

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