How Smithsonian Helped Solve the Mystery of the Unknown [Black] Woman Scientist 

Sheila Minor was not, as some suggested, “support staff.” She was a biological research technician who went on to a 35-year-long scientific career

Source: How Smithsonian Helped Solve the Twitter Mystery of the Unknown Woman Scientist | At the Smithsonian | Smithsonian

 

 

Language of the Dispossessed

The language has become insufficient

for the expression of my experience.

I find no words

to articulate the truth of my being,

and so my experience cannot be known,

even to myself.

 

Because my experience is deeper than my known concepts allow,

the articulation of my experience is taboo.

 

Sometimes, I feel the language is my enemy

that causes me to articulate pain –

the language is very good at articulating pain –

and even a word like love

does not express what I know it to be.

 

Some words I painfully dig up from my depth

already provoke strange looks,

as if I have ventured into unholy territory,

or maybe it is that those

with whom I have had the misfortune to commune

continue to trade

the same old powerless concepts among themselves.

I suppose that might happen

to those who have not yet become aware

that language has not organically

occurred on our planet,

but is a creation of the savvy

to serve the needs of the powerful.

 

It’s no coincidence,

perhaps,

that the rich + powerful

always seem to have larger vocabularies

than the dispossessed,

who are dispossessed

precisely

because they do not know

and do not have the words to know

that the paradigm

in which they live

and labor

and endure the hardest conflicts

supresses

and makes invisible

the truth of their experiences,

expresses only the ideas of their lords who despise them,

and leaves them struggling to speak,

because everybody knows

poor people don’t talk good.

 

 

Through Darkness to Light | Visions of the Underground Railraod

Photographer, Jeanine Michna-Bales has documented the route of the Underground Railroad,. The images were shot at night to remind viewers that enslaved Africans seeking freedom traveled under cover of darkness. Despite the fact that true freedom remained out of reach, hundreds of Black slaves made the 1,400 mile journey from the cotton plantations of Louisiana in the USA, sometimes as far north as Ontario, Canada. See the photo-essay in Through Darkness to Light | VQR Online