dress

Living Quisqueya

Jose Vilson Jose 1 Comment

This past weekend, I spent some time with my Dominican parents. To be specific, my Dominican mother and stepfather, both of whom enjoy the Dominican satellite channels offered on Time Warner Cable. They’ll watch shows rooted in guttural comedy, scantily-clad voluptuous women, and nationalism sprinkled throughout the programming. They laugh, shake, dance, and yell at the television, even when the situation doesn’t call for it. My parents respond to the …

haitigasolinemantires

Every Waking Moment I’m Haitian, Too

Jose Vilson Jose 2 Comments

The New Year marked the 207th year of Haitian independence from French rule, a big footnote in time rubbed away into the crevices of Anglo history books. What many should consider a moment of celebration and exaltation gets shrouded in the dire situation that Haiti’s lived in since. Corrupt leaders, disintegrated economies, and disruptive occupants have ravaged a still proud country to its current state. Thus, I find it only …

Coretta Scott King

Short Notes: Because Everybody Can Serve

Jose Vilson Short Notes 3 Comments

A few links: I’m not hating on Wyclef Jean, but his response to the accusations about Yele Haiti left me wondering. Shady business gives shady returns. [Rap Radar] What kind of font are you? Answer this interactive survey for more. (password is: character) [Pentagram] While I didn’t have VH1 Soul, I’m certainly disappointed at its shutting down. It’s one of the few channels whose programming catered to my demographic. [Music …

A scene after the earthquake that hit Haiti on January 12th, 2010

Tearing The House Down pt. 2: Hands Up For Haiti

Jose Vilson Jose 2 Comments

For many of us in the United States, independence means a ton. Even for the most marginalized of groups, we scream and kick for it because of the hypocritical nature of this hollow pursuit of happiness. For most of us in this country, we enjoy freedoms that we often take for granted. From the computers we communicate with to having three meals of some variety, we all have a much …

Jose In The Dark

The Sounds of Quisqueya Call Me Right Back

Jose Vilson Jose 17 Comments

Today, Raquel Cepeda linked me to a post about Dominican-Haitian relations that she wrote on her blog, and for those of you who know me, you know I had to jump on that quickly. Most of you know my story already: Dominican mom, Haitian father, grew up conflicted about my identity and how people sought to mold it for me through their often contradictory actions, and eventually, I found my …

Protecting Our Children From What?

Jose Vilson Jose 11 Comments

On Friday, our grade / floor celebrated Dominican Independence Day / Black History Month, through a series of performances, from song and dance to Powerpoint slides and poetry (including yours truly.) I wasn’t bothered at all by the performances or even the more pro-Dominican stance the school usually takes. It’s ingrained nationalism, and perpetuated by their insular neighborhood (Washington Heights, if you must know). What that implicitly means is a …

U, Black Maybe

Jose Vilson Jose 13 Comments

“I guess in his mind, though, there’s no doubt as to what I am. Suffice it to say, people immediately peg me as “Black.” That’s fine; there’s nothing wrong with that. What’s unfortunate, though, is how limiting these labels become. What does it mean to be Black in this country? And does it allow for people who don’t necessarily fit right in that slot?”