- Liberal leadership do not have a good understanding of the world or society.
2. Money talks
3. When you have money you can do what you say you can do.
2. Money talks
3. When you have money you can do what you say you can do.
With a population of 6.5 million and a metro of 12.3 million Rio de Janeiro is the second largest city in Brazil. 48% of Rio’s Population is Black. Rio was the home of the 2016 Olympics. Rio is also home to Rocinha favela the largest favela in Latin America.
Salvador is Brazil’s third largest city. Salvador has 3 million people with a metro of 4 million (making it 7th). Salvador is known as “Brazil’s capital of happiness” due to its countless popular outdoor parties, including its street carnival. The city has the largest carnival in the world.8Once the magnificent capital of Portugal’s great New World colony, Salvador is the country’s Afro-Brazilian jewel, with an 80-85% Black population. However it is Brazil’s 3rd most dangerous city.
Note from BW of Brazil: For readers who may not know, when the term “black power”, said in English rather than “poder negro” in Portuguese, often times they are speaking of the afro hairstyle popularized by black Americans in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Leaders and representatives of this movement were recognized for their large, rounded afros, a symbol of black pride. As such, “black power” was adapted among black Brazilians in reference to the hairstyle. So when you Google the term “meu black power”, meaning “my black power” or “meu black”, for example, the person is more than likely talking about their hairstyle. But, there are some Afro-Brazilians who use the term in its original connotation: economic/political power/representation for the black population. And although the term is not actually used in the material below, with the rise of demands for black representation and afro-entrepreneurialism, it is clearly the objective of the initiative! And it’s about time!
The fashion world does not reflect the reality of Brazil, the country where negros(pretos/blacks and pardos/browns) are the majority – total 53.6% of the population in 2014.
Eyeing this historical disproportion, a young couple from Salvador, Bahia, created a virtual store that tries to show that it is indeed possible to prioritize negritude(blackness) in this market – and profit from it.
Launched this year, Kumasi is an online sales platform that brings together artisan articles produced only by pequenos empreendedores negros (black small entrepreneurs).
“It’s a shop also to mark position. To open and occupy space in the business environment, create a narrative protagonized by ourselves,” says Lucas Santana, 23.
A student of Electrical Engineering, he handles the business beside his girlfriend, Monique Evelle, 23, and her mother, Neuza Nascimento, 46.
Feminist and anti-racism phrases and expressions adorn products for sale on the site. “Poder às minas pretas” (Power to the black girls), “Nunca fui tímida, fui silenciada” (I’ve never been shy, I was silenced), “Tentaram nos enterrar, esqueceram que somos sementes” (They tried to bury us, but they forgot that we’re seeds).
With six months of operation, Kumasi has been gaining ground on two fronts: traditional customers, attracted to specific pieces, and the “activists” who consume for a cause.
And the store itself was born for a cause: to raise funds to pay for Desabafo Social, an education network in human rights created by Monique and transformed the young woman into a reference when it comes to feminism negro (black feminism) and social activism in Brazil.
The network of youth and adolescents began in 2011 as a student guild slate of a public school. Today it has 30,000 followers on the Internet. With 80 volunteers in 13 states, it organizes study groups, video conferences and workshops on topics such as racism and social inclusion.
Thinking about how to fund the network, Monique and Lucas had the idea of selling T-shirts with the phrase that has become a trademark of youth: “Se a coisa tá preta, a coisa tá boa” (If the thing is black, the thing is good).
“Once I was talking to friends about racist phrases and mentioned that it is common to say that ‘a coisa está preta’ (‘the thing is black’) when something is bad. So, in a lecture in 2014, I said that ‘if the thing is black, it’s actually good.’ This went viral,” says Monique, about to graduate in Humanities at the Federal University of Bahia (UFBA).
In the shop named after the city in Ghana that houses the biggest market in West Africa, only blacks can sell – and be models for the pieces on display.
“Once we receive a message saying that only having only black models was racism. But everywhere that only has a white standard, is that not racism?” asked Monique.
The shirts are the flagship, but the site also features turbans, calendars, caps, necklaces and other accessories produced by eight invited microempreendedores (small businesspeople) eight.
The family puts the orders together and makes two orders per week – Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo are the destinations of most orders.
Artisan Evanilza dos Santos, 58, participated in sporadic fairs in Salvador and says that her sales of semi-jewelry are up 50% on the site. “It’s very different the exposure of the product on the Internet,” she says.
At fairs, on average, a commission of 20% is paid by the participants. On the site, the rate is 12%, and members have qualifying activities such as digital marketing workshops, producing of videos for social networking and access to microcredit.
“I try to redeem the roots of black people with my pieces. I missed this in products I found on the street,” says Annia Rizia, 24, who produces accessories with cowry shells.
A student Arts at UFBA, Rizia says craft work is her only income today, and helps fund the course materials. “The great advantage of the site is that I can send products to other states. Without this partnership, the cost was too high.”
According to Data Popular institute, eight out of ten people that their improved their lives in Brazil in the past 15 years are black. Social mobility and increased self-esteem is reflected in consumption, says the institute, raising the demand for lines and products specific for the população negra (black population).
In the shop named after the city in Ghana, only blacks can sell and be models for products
In the case of Kumasi, dissemination won “volunteer ambassadors” who endorsed the products on social networks such as actor Lázaro Ramos and musicians Liniker and Tassia Reis.
Today there are already other entrepreneurs interested in joining the platform, which goes through a technological upgrade to gather more vendors and customers without sacrificing navigation and logistics.
Visibility also has its price – Monique slogan, for example, already prints parts of other shops. “The people have no creativity. Our own customers when they see an imitation they tell us. This is further proof that “a coisa tá preta, a coisa tá boa,” jokes the student.
The only daughter of a maid and a condominium security, Monique was raised in Nordeste de Amaralina, a region of Salvador stigmatized by poverty and violence.
Early on, she heard her mother’s stories in which the protagonists were princesas negras(black princesses) and de cabelo crespo (with curly/kinky hair). “Black princesses didn’t exist. They were all brancas (white girls), with long hair. Monique didn’t see herself in the princesses, so she created the character,” says her partner and mother, Neuza.
Since adolescence, Monique used her free time in activities with young people in the bairros da periferia (poor neighborhoods on the outskirts of the city). She went alone – to get closer, playing ball in the middle of boys rapping. When she got attention, she initiated talk about citizenship and human rights themes.
“We talked about how to act during police stops, for example, and also show examples of people who have changed reality itself,” says Monique, who has been invited to speak at events in Brazil and abroad.
Only in the last three years, the young woman from Salvador was among the “25 mulheres negras mais influentes no Brasil” (25 most influential black women in Brazil) (from the site Blogueiras Negras, 2013) and “30 mulheres com menos de 30 para ficar de olho” (30 women under 30 to keep an eye on) (Editora Abril, 2015), was part of the list Mulheres Inspiradoras 2015 (Inspiring Women 2015) (Think Olga site) and won the 2015 Laureate Brasil award, aimed at young people with actions of social entrepreneurship.
The other pillar of the contract is Lucas – “dream maker” of the store, according to the definition on the company website.
A ninth semester student of engineering, he works in person for three days of the week in the collaborative space in organizing deliveries. At home, he answers clients, maintains the site and takes care of digital marketing.
Neuza, who worked more than ten years as a maid and daily worker, now has her unique activity in the store. She says she’s “very proud” to be a partner of her daughter and says that she always supported her. “I never disbelieved in my daughter, even in the beginning. She didn’t win anything, but she helped many children.”
Today Kumasi works as MEI (individual microenterprise), with sales limit of R$60,000/year. The idea is to change to another tax bracket when updating the platform and being able to incorporate more sellers.
The store serves as marketplace – a space where exhibitors and buyers meet and make transactions. Vendors, independents, receive by the products they sell, deductions on the site commissions.
The sale of the Desabafo Social products (such as the T -shirt “Se a coisa tá preta…”) is still destined to actions of the network, end up falling under the definition of Oscip (Organization of Civil Society of Public Interest) and they want to create a network of distance education in 2017.
“Everything we do is in thinking about transformation. In Kumasi or other activities, the idea is that all grow together,” says Monique.
Source: Terra Notícias
In an historical parade, Emicida puts black and overweight models on as protagonists in SPFW with his clothing line
It took a rapper invading the catwalk to show the obvious: a parade with mostly black models is as or more beautiful than a parade of Scandinavian whites. There is no possible argument after watching the the LAB parade.
By Wendy Candido (Rap Nacional Download) with info from Ego, Vogue, Elle, M de Mulher
The second day of parades of São Paulo Fashion Week ended in a grand and exciting way, and certainly made history on Monday (October 24th) with the debut of the Laboratório Fantasma, the clothing line of rapper Emicida and his brother Evandro Fióti.
With a casting, comprised of 90% black models, the mission of the brand at the event was to bring the fashion world a more inclusive, democratic discourse, and, of course, representativeness.
The main objective of LAB, as the line is affectionately known, is to show the diversity and freedom from all knowledge of the struggle of black people throughout the world and the harsh reality of everyday life of the broken, very well known by the brothers Emicida and Fióti.
The collection, which is called Yasuke, the name given to black Samurais, had creative direction of João Pimenta, a renowned designer who participated in SPFW for years, and mixes Eastern, African and street influences. Under the blessing of Emicida, the pieces were presented by people of all types (black, fat, tall, short…) escaping from world standards of the catwalks and representing those who we see on the streets every day, that is, real people, who consumes a lot of fashion and often only don’t consume more because most brands bar offering offer sizes that go past 44. In short, the LAB parade is nothing like what the one is accustomed to seeing at the São Paulo fashion week.
Entre the looks, all in black, white and red, the singers Seu Jorge and Ellen Oléria also paraded in what was a great celebration of cultura afro and national rap.
In an interview with Vogue, Emicida detailed he how deals with the similarities between the creative processes in music and fashion.
“Creation is a blank sheet on all platforms. Creating a track or designing shirt, what I want is to tell a story. This is a delicious sensation.”
For its first participation in SPFW, the line came with a lot of maturity, full of innovation and authenticity – Watch the whole parade, complete with an Emicida rhyme.
Knowing full well the importance of the visual of his parade, the rapper and his brother explained the vision they had for the parade.
“We put on the catwalk ordinary people, who deal with reality. We see a many things, not only in fashion, that don’t reflect the reality of the country. We are showing what Brazil is,” Emicida said. When asked about the casting of the models, the rapper replied:
“In general, people look at the catwalk here and it seems that they’re looking at the catwalks of Sweden. We can look at the casting of our show through the lens of the occupation and also the representation of beauty, self-esteem and elegance. For a long time it was not associated with pessoas pretas e à periferia (black people and the periphery). What we are doing now is getting all this back. Evandro and I participated in the choice of each person to participate, we didn’t leave this decision in the hands of anyone. And we didn’t go only by the profile, we also exchanged an idea to know who they were.”
“We aren’t not making any kind of protest. Just portraying Brazil as it really is. Fashion has to be inclusive and not generate grief or destroy dreams,” Fióti said. “We want to show a Brazil rarely or never seen in this structure of the fashion week. LAB wins with the entry in the line-up and the SPFW wins with the veracity of our work. This may reflect positively in the minds of many people, hopefully act as a further help to change thoughts and attitudes of the entire ecosystem of the industry. That’s what I hope to garner,” he concludes.
The models celebrated. “The idea is very cool. Society needs to see that there is room for everyone. If it was the reverse, with mostly whites, no one would find it strange,” said Arthur Lopes. “I thought the initiative was incredible. In other clothing lines, when there are two black girls it’s a lot,” said Natiele Alves.
The challenge to a SPFW that’s usually lilly white was also not missed by Elle magazine:
“In Emicida’s show, he really wanted to reflect on the beauty of the streets, of the public using their clothes and not bending toward the standards. […] It’s clear that the rapper was keen to reverse the percentage and put on a beautiful display of 90% black versus 10% white to show how a more colorful world of fashion would be. And whoever saw it, knows: it’s beautiful, proud, with intelligent and desirable clothes.”
Are black and money are rival words???
By Bruno Rico
We must learn to recognize something historic, and this week something happened up for history, which was the launch of the brand Lab, by rapper Emicida and his brother Fióti, in the biggest fashion event in Latin America, São Paulo Fashion Week.
The launch was historic for many reasons, the parade managed to insert practically all the elements that everybody involved in militancy always complain of not having, and when it has it, here come people complaining, and that my text today is especially directed to this group.
First it is important to say that the Laboratório Fantasma has been around for a long time in the market, it functions as a record label, producer, cultural vehicle, etc.; I can say that I’m talking about a collective created to promote hip-hop, urban and black culture in general, in addition to other things, and of these things emerged a clothing brand, which until recently sold the clothes of its latest collection for the single price of R$14.00. All this already shows how Emicida was always a man ahead of his time, a born artist, a visionary entrepreneur, black with no strings attached, and he is more than right, as our ancestors were already tied up for too long, the equivalent of several future generations, and now this next generation is saying we have to be imprisoned again, this doesn’t cut it anymore!
In spite of already having done a lot, Emicida decided to go beyond, and from Laboratório Fantasma he launched a collection that comes with a new look, getting his foot in the door of the fashion market.
In my thirty years, I’ve never seen a black guy who rose from poverty to launching his clothing brand and already the guy launches it in an event that is a world reference in terms of fashion. If this isn’t showing off to you, for me, it’s a lot!
Another extremely important point of the parade, and for me the most important of all is the question of representativeness, because almost all models were black, not to mention the designer was also, and is this not what the guys are always complaining? In addition, the brand even bothered to put on overweight models, but I’m not talking about those chubby ones with no stomach that appear in most plus size fashion shows, I’m talking about gordo de verdade (the real fat ones), people who need 5G clothes, and with Lab they will find these cloths.
Mas Emicida and his brother Fióti could have just been around there, after all, a bunch of blacks together in a walkway was a lot of already, and already would be an achievement, but they still went further, as the brand even bothered to release prints with African themes, all connected to the history of Yasuke, a black samurai that I had never heard of, but that I learned about thanks to Lab. Look how sensational this was! You launch a brand and still convey culture with all of this; search for Yasuke, the parade was cool, there’s a cartoon and everything and all the kids will fall in love with it. Soon, I’ll release a book called Piye, which is already ready, only missing a publisher, and Piye, for those who do not know, was the first great black Pharaoh of Egypt, so I thought the history of Yasuke was sensational.
In the midst of such representation, we still had as models: musician Seu Jorge, actress Cris Vianna, rapper Karol Conka, Rashid, the former Globeleza Nayara Justino, who was practically fired from the post for ser preta demais (being too black), remember her? Well then, all of this crowd was there, among many others, including models who live in slums.
But all of this wasn’t enough, there were still a lot of people complaining, and gente preta(black people), because I didn’t see white people commenting on the matter, and even I saw them, it wouldn’t matter to me, because what bothers me most is when I see blacks criticizing blacks, especially when that black seems to concern himself with the evolution of the other black, because I can only understand it in this way, as in my Facebook I already questioned three siblings that were against to the show, I asked them to show me a solution, in regards to the problem they had submitted, only that so far no one has responded.
To be continued…
3. Panama City
8. Los Angeles
2. Hong Kong
9. Kuala Lumpur
2. Buenos Aires
3. Rio de Janeiro
10. Balneario Camboriu Brazil
3. Cape Town
9. Dar Es Salaam
3. Gold Coast
2. Durban Iconic Tower – 88F (370m,) 1,214 – Durban | Propose
3. Nairobi Hilton Tower 60 F (330) 1,082 Under Construction
4. Abuja Africa Tower (303 meters) 1,018 feet Proposed
5. Upper Hill Square, Nairobi, Kenya 951 feet 66 Floor ($500 million)
6. The NSSF Tower Nairobi, Kenya 921 feet
7. The One Nairobi, Kenya 890
8. International Finance Center Sandton Sandton, South Africa 250 m (820 ft)
9. Eko Atlantic Tower Bank 55 stories Lagos, Nigeria
10. Carlton Center, Johannesburg – 50 floors 223 m (732 ft) 50 fl
11. The Leonardo, Sandton 223 meters 732 feet 50 floors
12. Britam Tower, Nairobi, Kenya 193 m (633 ft)
13. HazinaTower 180 m (590 ft) Nairobi, Kenya
14. Pearl Sky 180 m (590 ft) $24 million Durban, South Africa 2018
15. International Finance Centre 2 Sandton 590 Sandton, South Africa
16. Tanzania Port Authority HQ 178 m (584 ft)
17. AVIC International Africa 176 m (577 ft) Nairobi, Kenya (Cost $93.6 million)
18. Commercial Bank of Ethiopia 46 floors 571 feet $200 million Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
19. Ponte City Apartments, Johannesburg – 173 m (568 ft)
20. Millenium Tower 2.7 million Abuja, Nigeria 567 feet ($266 million)
21. UAP Tower Nairobi, Kenya
22. Dar es Salaam City Center Promise Tower 165 m (541 ft) 35 Floors
23. NECOM House, Lagos – 160 m (520 ft)
24. PSPF Commercial Towers, Dar es Salaam – 152.7 m (501 ft)
25. Marble Towers, Johannesburg – 152 m (499 ft)
26. Pearl Dawn, Durban – 152 m (499 ft)
27. South African Reserve Bank Building 150 m (490 ft)
28. MetLife Center, Cape Town – 150 m (490 ft)
29. 021 Tower Cape Town – 484 feet
30. 88 on Field, Durban – 147 m (482 ft)
PHOENIX — The African-American Barbie dolls were lined up in a neat row, each still in its hot-pink box, never ripped open by a little one’s hands.
The dolls stood there, arms at their sides, all dressed up in tiny, crisp outfits.
They seemed to be waiting there at Mitchell’s, a beauty supply store in Phoenix that stocks hair care and other items catering to people of color.
Now, Melissa Cox, the store’s third-generation owner, has found a potent marketing combination to move the dolls and other merchandise off the shelves and into the hands of customers. She employed a Facebook Live as a high-tech marketing tool and found a receptive group of new customers from a campaign aimed at bolstering African American-owned businesses called Buy Black Phoenix.
On Facebook Live’s streaming video, Cox showed off the dolls, along with a collection of “hats for church on Sunday,” greeting cards with messages geared toward African-American communities and her hair care products.
A friend of a friend had told Cox about the effort launched in August by the Phoenix chapter of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women. The women came up with an idea that has taken shape in different forms over the past few years in cities across America.
The premise: The more that African-Americans show their spending power, the more sway they’ll have when it comes to influencing social, political and economic change. It isn’t just happening in Phoenix, but other big cities as well:
•Kansas City. “Blackout Monday” is a movement organized in response to civil unrest in Ferguson, Mo. The day is designated as an event for people to head to a black-owned business and do their part for the “Buy Black Empowerment Initiative.”
•Atlanta. There’s the “Bank Black” campaign. It started with an Instagram post and hashtags (#blackdollarsmatter, #blackeconomics, #IfYoureNotBlackThatsCoolToo) encouraging people to open an account with Citizens Trust Bank, an African American-owned savings institution.
Mike Render, a rapper and activist better known by his stage name Killer Mike, called for the action in February as part of Black History Month. It attracted Georgia residents, who committed to driving miles to patronize the bank, and was backed by star power the likes of Usher, Jermaine Dupri and Solange Knowles.
•Chicago. Perhaps the most famous movement started with one Chicago family. Maggie Anderson wrote about the 360 days she and her family spent in 2009 making good on a promise to consume all their goods and services from black-owned businesses. After releasing her 2012 book, Our Black Year, she traveled the nation promoting the campaign through social media, in TED talks and on speaking tours.
It took longer for the economic campaign to take shape in Phoenix.
Cox says her hometown, the sixth largest city in the nation, is different from other big cities building on African-Americans’ buying power.
“We have a pretty small black community here,” said Cox, who was born and raised in Phoenix and now runs the shop founded by her grandparents in 1958. “But we’re here. We’ve been here.”
Black people make up about 6.5% of the Phoenix population, according to the U.S. census 2010 estimate. Compare that with other large cities like Atlanta where black people account for about 54% of the population, and it could be easy to feel like African-Americans calling for a collective effort in Phoenix are facing a David-Goliath battle.
Donna Williams, a Goodyear, Ariz., attorney and member of the local National Coalition of 100 Black Women, knows it can be tough to unite any community around a single issue, especially a relatively small community that has historically been disenfranchised.
So Williams and her fellow coalition members talked about setting realistic goals. They would ask people to pledge to spend 15% of their disposable income with local black-owned businesses.
“We’re not Atlanta. We’re not LA. We’re not New York,” she said. “So it wouldn’t be reasonable to ask for that 100% level of spending — that would discourage people.”
Williams said the initiatives are rooted in a fatigue over economic, social, educational, income and political disparities in America. It’s not that different from the same sort of fatigue that spurred the Black Lives Matter movement, she said.
“There is kind of this sentiment that, ‘We’ve had enough, we’re going to have to find solutions to what ails our community and we’re going to have to start from within,’ ” she said.
Dominican Republic (If you are light skinned)
Your stateside relatives can visit often (which may or may not be a good thing) if you adopt this Central American nation—just a three-hour plane ride from Florida—as your new home. With its perfect tropical weather, universal health care and consistently high marks among Latin American countries on the Human Development Index (pdf), Costa Rica has jumped in popularity for American expats overall within the past 10 years. Other pluses: its stable economy, low cost of living, strong middle class and robust diplomatic relations with the U.S. Add to this few reported natural disasters, low rates of violent crime (theft and credit card fraud are traditionally its biggest crime problems), a great mix of urban and rural areas, and the much-raved-about jungle and beach life, and you’ve got a virtual paradise.
This is particularly the case for telecommuting entrepreneurs and English teachers. “I love the vibe and I love speaking Spanish,” reports one Tribe member of the country’s primary language. “The cost of living is low, and I could afford to live in a house on the beach and just chill.”
Trinidad and Tobago
Ghana is unofficially known as Africa for beginners. The capital of Ghana, Accra, is home to many English speakers and expats because it attracts mainly Europeans and Asians who decided to settle in the city. As a black male traveler, you will find Ghana very similar to life in a western nation. They have big shopping malls, cell phones, world class accommodations, cars and everything else you are used to at home. Ghanaian people are very friendly and welcoming towards foreigners/tourists. Best of all, it is very safe to visit alone. There is very little violent crime to worry about
Morocco (If you are light skinned)
Algeria ( If you are light skinned)
An African-American couple currently raising their 2-year-old outside Wellington, the capital city of Australia’s gorgeous southeastern neighbor, reports, “We chose not to raise him in the USA for a myriad of reasons—the safety of our African-American child, the inconsistent quality of education there and other factors. New Zealand was a perfect place for us. The country was rated the fourth safest in the world, the public schools consistently rank in the top 10 in the world, violent crime is low—like, there was one murder in our town in the last eight years. Also, we have not experienced anything significant as far as racism. We feel welcome, supported and like true members of the community.”
Hong Kong (Helps if you are light skinned)
If you’ve ever given serious thought to chucking the deuces to your 9-to-5 and moving abroad to work in high-impact industries like finance or lower-impact industries like teaching (English), you already know we roll deep in the Pearl of the Orient. There are roughly 60,000 Americans living in Hong Kong, an estimated 10,000 of them black, according to an African-American expat who lives and works there. If you’re like most black people and don’t know Cantonese, you’re in luck—English is also an official language. One long-term black expat couple were so smitten by H.K.—and eager to educate curious natives about African-American culture and achievements—that they launchedInternational Black History Month there earlier this year.
India (If you are light skinned)
If you follow tourism trends, you know that Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, is literally and figuratively hot right now, especially among people of color. With foreigners making up 71 percent of the city’s population, it’s nice to live somewhere “that is not ruled by white men,” exclaims one black expat. This has a huge impact on how black folks are treated. “You’ll find people of all races here to be quite humble,” she says of the most liberal of the Arab emirates, although American women should still expect to cover up inside the UAE, a majority-Muslim country. Plus, because it is by all accounts a young country, there is an unending list of services, goods and expertise needed there, opening itself up nicely to African-American professionals and entrepreneurs alike.
France attracted black scholars, artists and intellectuals dating all the way back to the early 20th century. Europe provided an escape to the blatant racism and prejudice in America for black people who wanted to pursue their work and live in peace. I visited Paris, France a couple of years ago and had a wonderful time in the city. My only complaints were the high cost of living and the colder weather beginning in September. Europe itself is a rapidly changing population as the countries become more Muslim and ethnic. Black people from America, Africa and South America settle in Europe looking for opportunity, respect and love