Introducing The Modern Day Renaissance and a Feature With Aziz Sani
Have you noticed the stepping stones leading to a movement within black culture? A movement that embodies the spirit of the Harlem Renaissance in the sense that it promotes unity in the black community through the need for knowledge, the determination for change, and the necessity of art. I believe this movement is taking place as a result of the increased social and self awareness.
The proponents of this growing movement are the black women and men who are motivated and determined for change. These participants are constantly telling their stories, reading (leaders are readers), starting dialogues, and providing commentary on controversial issues. Here is an example of a personal story that demonstrates their own reality that transpires into all of ours. It is featured on Youngist ,a blog I stumbled upon one morning before class that peaked my interests for the "independent news and views" that parallels the active voices of this movement.
This movement, or rather renaissance brings us together as a unit, in order to change our own perspectives and the perspectives of others referring to our histories in order to better shape the present and the future. By becoming more aware of the issues that plague our communities beyond what is depicted in media, but getting a basic understanding of who? what? when? and why? In order to reach out encourage one another than attack, discourage, and marginalize our own people. Yet, the changes are gradually taking place as black youth are becoming more involved in learning the real history of the African Diaspora as well as becoming more involved in their own communities and personal betterment.I believe that the foundation of this modern day Renaissance is coming together through the arts, academics, and personal passions to attain knowledge and skills in order to achieve a sense of unity within the black community. Once that is achieved there is only up from there.
This modern Renaissance is thriving in the black subcultures such as the carefree black girls with the"spokeswomen" Solange and Janelle Monae and male dominated collective groups like Street Etiquette . These groups embodied a spirit that is different from the normal visions of black people. These communities lift black men and women when they are constantly on the chopping block in the media, promoting their internal development, encouraging their uniqueness, and personal crafts.
Now the feature presentation you have all been waiting for:
A little about the Man
Sani is a student at the University of Maryland College Park with a major in African American studies. Aziz is a polymath, for he is well versed in many topics, especially in topics that pertain to highlighting and acknowledging the flaws of society whether the matter is racial, behavioral, or socioeconomic. This knowledgeable and fashionable young man starts the conversations that are crucial and uncomfortable, but are necessary to get people thinking.
The heart of the Matter:
Do you believe that there is a modern renaissance taking place within black culture today?
"Hmmm...thats a hard question, ideally I would like to think so, but I feel there is an overwhelming level of complacency amongst ourselves, and I others, the idea of "it takes a village to raise a child," has been abandoned that "child" has left the village and has no plans on returning. They [child] has realized that living in predominately white neighborhoods far way from their hometown is seen as better, they marry outside of their race, then blame it society. Moreover I feel the level of self hate has increased, compared to the civil rights rights movement, although as African Americans we have come far socially, in other areas we lack. And I refuse to blame slavery...yep...but i blame ourselves, we have allowed tv to brain wash us without any protest, we take whatever media tells us as truth, and we have learned to hate our own brothers and sisters. our black men refuse to date our beautiful black sisters, and our sisters think our brothers are down low, prison destined, polygamous dogs...but we except to find love amongst each other!? and the worst part is we accept it. I feel compared to any other ethnicity/ race blacks we hate ourselves the most for one reason or another and are quick to blame slavery, if our grandparents and parents could learn to love themselves and their people in times of turmoil why cant we now??
As a Renaissance Black Man, what does that title mean to/for you?
"To me coming from you [Felicia] it is a high honor! But i think it means to be the brother that stands out naturally in various fields, not for others, but its innate...a sense a predetermined uniqueness, unannounced to oneself in which they embody everyday. Its not a front, its not to impress others. I think the Renaissance Black Man is the writer, the poet, the painter, the singer, the style icon, the thinker...the new cool, and how intellect is cool and attractive."