Category: Life + Culture

Life and Culture

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SHAME ON BLACK PEOPLE WHO EMBRACE ‘ALL LIVES MATTER’

The recently coined “All Lives Matters” slogan may sound harmless from a distance. Who wouldn’t agree that life breathed into any human being is valuable? But when used amid the racially volatile climate America is in it right now, it would behoove any logical, well-meaning person to understand that All Lives Matter is nothing but a slap in the face to the “Black Lives Matter” movement and all that it stands for. It’s particularly disturbing when the argument for All Lives Matter is co-signed by Black people themselves. Exhibits A and B: Raven-Symoné and Terry McMillan, author of “Waiting To Exhale.” The two… Continue Reading

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ERICA CAMPBELL, HUSBAND TALK MISCONCEPTIONS OF BLACK FATHERHOOD [EXCLUSIVE]

While Black women are often celebrated for the phenomenally strong and beautiful beings that they are, Black men don’t always get to share the spotlight. That’s why Erica Campbell and her husband, Warren Campbell, decided to join My Black Is Beautiful’s latest campaign, “Grooming My Black Man For Greatness.” During the month of June, the gospel music couple will be using their voices to encourage African-American women to celebrate Black men in the home. While the Campbells understand the unique challenges Black families face, they are on a mission to dispel longstanding negative perceptions of Black men and Black fatherhood that… Continue Reading

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MUSIC VETERAN, SHANTI DAS, SPILLS THE ‘1, 2, 3S OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP’ [EXCLUSIVE]

In 2009, Shanti Das was on top of the world. As executive vice president of marketing at Universal Motown, she had nearly 20 years of experience in the music industry, helming careers for the likes of TLC, Outkast, Usher, among others. But during the height of career, Das quit her job to embark on a path of entrepreneurship. Five and half years later, the music industry veteran is now the proud founder and CEO ofPress Reset Entertainment, which provides consulting to artists like Kelly Price and Demetria McKinney, as well as other services such as talent booking and speaking engagements. While most people in her… Continue Reading

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MISS JESSIE’S CO-FOUNDER TALKS NEW BOOK, BEAUTY IN STARTING YOUR OWN BIZ

When it comes to being your own boss, Miko Branch, co-founder and CEO of Miss Jessie’s knows exactly what it takes to be the commander of your own ship. Created alongside her sister Titi Branch, who passed away in December 2014, Miko built a hair care giant from the ground up, leading the charge in the curly hair movement. Over ten years since coming to the market, the business-minded beauty is now ready to share her story and how her and Titi’s sister-act dream team came to be. In “Miss Jessie’s: Creating a Successful Business From Scratch-Naturally,” (which goes on sale… Continue Reading

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SPENCER CHARLES USES BLACK WOMEN AS HIS MUSE IN ARTSY PHOTOS [EXCLUSIVE]

To photographer Spencer Charles, the Black woman’s body is a work of art. The 25-year-old uses her beauty as the canvas to his stylized photographs, which often depict women of color in their most natural state. Stretch marks, hips and all, he’s developed a knack for capturing Black women in her most raw form, often through the use of tasteful nudity. Charles has gained quite a strong following mostly from his ability to turn seemingly imperfections into masterpieces, celebrating Black women flaws and all. In December, Charles took his brand to new heights when he released a limited-supply calendar called… Continue Reading

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Raven-Symone Says She’s Not African-American, Why It’s Problematic

Raven-Symone has declared war on labels. During an interview with Oprah Winfrey, the former child star touched on her sexuality and race, categorically rejecting being called gay or African-American. “I’m tired of being labeled. I want to be labeled a human who loves humans,” Symone said, admitting that she is in love with her partner, who is a woman. “I don’t need language. I don’t need a categorizing statement for it.” “I’m an American, I’m not an African-American,” the “Cosby Show” star added. “I don’t know where my roots go to. I don’t know what country in Africa I’m from…but I do know… Continue Reading

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Is The Institution of Marriage Dying? [Commentary]

There’s a state of emergency in America: married couples just can’t seem to stay together. In Black Hollywood alone there have been at least seven reported divorces, including Nick Cannon and Mariah Carey, Keyshia Cole and Daniel Gibson, and more recently Wiz Khalifa and Amber Rose. Whether over infidelity or irreconcilable differences, it seems celebrity couples are calling it quits left and right with no sign of hope in sight. So much so that a couple actually surviving is mythical in theory (hey, Jada and Will!) Other marriages that have joined the divorce roll call this year include Randy Jackson and wife Erika Riker, celebrity chefs Gina and Pat Neely, Sherri Shepherd and Lamar Sally, and Paula Patton and Robin Thicke…. Continue Reading

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Author Zane Talks Career, Race and Sexuality [Exclusive]

Gerren Keith Gaynor interviews author Zane for Centric: Unless you’ve been living under a rock you know that when it comes to erotica novels, author Zane is the genre’s reigning queen. Over the last 15 years, she’s published 30 books and has had her signature no-holds-barred literary sexcapades turned into the television series “Zane’s Sex Chronicles.” And on Oct. 10, the author will be entering a new medium when her New York Times best-selling novel “Addicted” makes its film debut in theaters nationwide. But even with her massive success, Zane admits she’s noticed the limitations of her career as a Black writer. With the… Continue Reading

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The Danger In Nicki Minaj and Big Booty Culture

Everyone is talking about Nicki Minaj’s butt. Ever since the female rapper released the cover art for her new single “Anaconda” (pictured above) – which shows her squating, backed turned to the camera in a g-string, with her ass in full view – many took Minaj to task for exploiting her body for music sales and shock value. While it’s no different than all the other times the female rapper got attention for her assets, this go around seems to be a public outcry against what some consider to be a gimmick executed one too many times by the rapper and,… Continue Reading

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AJ Johnson On Being A Wellness Coach, How To Be A Better You [Exclusive]

  While AJ Johnson may be best known as Jody’s momma in the 2001 film Baby Boy, what many people may not know is that over the last several years, the veteran actress has dedicated her life’s work to being a health and wellness coach to both celebrities and non-celebrities alike. One of Johnson’s clients, Gabrielle Union, made headlines when she stood before an audience at the ESSENCE’s Black Women in Hollywood luncheon to give a candid confession about how she once “lived for the negativity inflicted” upon her fellow actresses of color out of insecurity and competitiveness. In an interview with Oprah, Union… Continue Reading