The Expatriate Series: The Stranger
I call Paul Strand the stranger because he arrived in Ghana and Mexico as an outsider. He photographed the people of Ghana and Mexico with a simple premise, that the similarities between all humans outweighed any differences. It was this humanism that allowed Paul Strand to capture images that transcended cultural spheres and contributed to lasting impact on the craft of modern photography.
The Expatriate Series - Introduction
I started the BlackMexico blog to create a public space where I could explore and collaborate on the topic of race and culture in Mexico. I wanted to focus on answering the question of how did the encounter between the people of Mexico and Black diaspora influence the development of the Mexican culture we see today? It was a topic that sparked my interest ever since my senior year of undergraduate study at Cornell University. Now that I created the BlackMexico blog, I have been wrestling with how to engage the material and how to present it on the web. My question is broad and the resources available to me scarce.
(Portrait of young Paul Strand by Alfred Stieglitz)
Black music in Praise of Oxala and Other Gods
Throughout South America, the descendants of the millions of slaves brought to the New World by the Spanish and Portuguese still pay homage to the pantheon of their African ancestors, often, albeit, under the identities of Christian saints. This album features their vibrant worship music, drawn from recordings made in Colombia, Ecuador, and Brazil. Musicologist David Lewiston recalls his travels through South America to record this music: