Ten Simple Things About Free Black Space
1) Black intellectualism has always existed in America. Black intellectualism existed before America. There were black intellectuals on the slave ship. Meditation is required.
2) Free Black Space is about free exchange of ideas about the Black. Blacks have always traded in such ideas outside of the institutions in the larger society, often because that was the only place we could do so. Some ideas easily articulated in Free Black Space are challenging to articulate in public.
3) Integration challenges the Free Black Space dynamic. Post integration the value of Free Black Exchange of ideas is challenged by the need for intellectual refinement in conjunction with the standards of the larger society. Education is both skill and indoctrination. The black struggle for balance under education is difficult. Some of our progress is challenged by a disconnect with what got us here in the first place.
4) Given the dynamics of the publishing industry and the scarcity of black media and publishing infrastructure Free Black Space is more important than ever. Black people you speak freely with are more important than ever.
5) Though our name is Free Black Space and we are a simple blog, the internet has given rise to more Free Black Spaces like ours in the digital world.
6) Free Black Space Began in May of 2009 after the end of Karibu books and shortly after Obama's election. Our goal is to be a digital space where "all definitions of blackness exists."
7) In hindsight, the Obama moment challenged most definitions of blackness, and to some degree made Free Black Space seem more insignificant than ever. The talk of the post-racial, the micro-aggression, white privilege, and diverse blackness launched from often predominantly white environments devalued Free Black Space.
8) The greatest benefit of Free Black Space is our ability to process emotions with people who share similar consciousness. We take this for granted. We take this even more for granted as we become more successful and operate outside the confines of our community.
9) Free Black Space is simply a way of saying: what Black people do for each other, through listening and exchange is the heart of our survival. The listening and exchange is not simply therapeutic, but also intellectual.
10) Free Black Space imagines African American intellectuals and word workers learning from jazz and hip-hop artists. African Americans in music are more clear about the legacy of our ancestral wisdom, skills, and tactics than those who work in the world of words.
11) Free Black seeks good writing. There is an abundance of it in rejection piles. Given the dynamics of the publishing industry, much of our good writing goes unpublished. Free Black Space is one place to publish such work.
12) Free Black Space did close to two hundred thousand hits last year. We have published over 40 authors. We have not funded the idea. There is good writing here.