About two months ago the Black Love Project showed up in my reader lists based on my interest. A lot of times these list hit the mark and it did this day. The name alone grabbed my attention and after reading five posts I was hooked.
The relationships between black women and black men has been extremely contentious the last few years. I have too many articles from both sides angrily pointing fingers at the other for the failures and problems plaguing the black community. I have seen too many YouTube videos chastising the other and swearing off any affections. How can that be? In this tumultuous time how can any of us turn our back on the other? It has been very disheartening to read and hear the hurt from both sides.
Then my feed pops up the Black Love Project celebrating our bond, our history, and connection. These are the stories I want to read and shout out to the world. I was so impressed and moved I had to ask the writer if I could feature her blog on mine. It will be a new feature on my blog that I hope to do once a month. I want to support the positive, informative, and entertaining blogs I love and there are many but the Black Love Project is my first 😉
Below please find the questions and very insightful answers given by the creator of the Black Love Project blog and definitely add her to your blogs to follow.
Her picture heading captivated me before I even read the first word.
Q: What is the Black Love Project?
Black Love Project is a social study that aims to study the parallel between African/Diasporan music and socio-political and romantic trends within black communities. Others often tell black history and I think our music is the one place you can find an unfiltered story. As I tend to view and relate most things through a historical and musical perspective, I understand there is a great relationship between song and life, love most especially. The quest to study the link amongst relationships, socio-political circumstances and the art created during respective eras, blossomed into Black Love Project. Black Love Project was created to expose our history, our personal triumphs and failures from our own mouths; the black story from the mouths of black storytellers.
Q: Why the focus on Black love?
My focus on black love stems from the idea that there are not enough love stories about us. For example, World War II is by far the most romanticized war, we see so many documentaries about soldiers and their women waiting for them back home. We see Rosie the Riveter pitching in while her significant other is off fighting. Where are the stories and love letters from black soldiers writing home to their families and loved ones? Where are the stories of black women who never heard from their lovers again? Where is the documentation of their fears and experiences? I focus on black love because I do not believe there is sufficient coverage of it. We love and hurt like anyone else and our history affects that in various ways. I want to show our love in the most human form, rather than the roles that have been placed upon us.
Q: Are the people you feature on your blog random people or people you know?
In the beginning, everyone I interviewed was either a friend or acquaintance. I can be a bit shy, so I thought it best to start with people I was familiar with. Now, most of my interviews are from people I meet randomly. It makes for great conversation and to learn the stories of people I may never see again, but will remember because they were gracious enough to speak with me. I love this part of the project the most, because I am capturing black history through everyone I meet.
Q: What is Black love to you?
That is a very great question! I started this project not only for the sociological reasons, but because I needed a way to understand heartbreak. When I began tinkering with the concept of Black Love Project, I was emerging from a very deep heartbreak and was questioning and finding the answers to who I was as a woman. Love for me is a very spiritual thing; I need to feel one’s energy to be able to say I love you. There were times I could feel him thinking of me and in my younger years, I thought that feeling was all there was to love. I now understand that it takes a lot of work and compromising; but ultimately it first takes a love of self. In terms of black love, I think it is the understanding of what the other is going through in the outside world. To understand the uncomfortable feelings that come with living as a black person in this world and to make them feel at home when they see you; to have someone who makes them feel comfortable in their skin, as they do the same for you.
Q: As I have mentioned I love the idea of showcasing black love, couples or singles, when there are so little positive images of how black men and women relate. What is your goal with your blog?
My goal is to normalize our love stories. I want to share the first time a perceived “thug” had his heart-broken and what songs remind him of that. Or the grandmother from the Deep South who remembers what it was to love in the era of Jim Crow. Or the African immigrant who loved while their country erupted in civil war. Our history is a unique one and it affects how we love, Black Love Project’s goal is to capture that.
Again, I’d like to thank the creator of the Black Love Project blog for taking the time to answer my questions about her inspiration for this wonderful blog and being my first feature.
I’m looking forward to many more post and I hope you gather all these stories and create a wonderful coffee table book! I would love a signed copy!