We Are Respectable Negroes is a website where we discuss race, politics, popular culture, history, military affairs, philosophy, higher ed, ghetto nerd identity, and a range of other topics. But who is a "respectable negro?" Who is the "We" in We Are Respectable Negroes.
This website was founded by Chauncey Devega (and two friends who have since moved on to other projects). We Are Respectable Negroes was originally intended as a space to meditate on what it meant to be a black person, in the post civil rights era, when (then) a man by the name of Barack Obama was running for President of the United States.
As Editor and Founder of We Are Respectable Negroes I have expanded that mission over the years. I am a working class black guy and ghetto nerd who works in higher education, and also freelances as an essayist and cultural critic.
I am a Black Pragmatist. I also honor the Black Freedom Struggle.
I am a secular humanist. I like good beer. I am a hedonist video game player who reads comic books and is trying to finish a bunch of non-fiction projects...in addition to a novella about a revenge tale told in a world where zombies are a day-to-day reality, and where the living are in denial about their own obsolescence.
I am also shopping around a pitch for a book project based on my various online writings, life as a ghetto nerd, and member of the hip hop generation.
As such, the "We" and "Respectable" in "We Are Respectable Negroes" is intentionally vague. I do not believe in race essentialism because race is a social construct that is a "true lie." There is only one "race" and that is the human race. Nevertheless, race is real. Riddle you that one.
Is being a ghetto nerd a question of race and racial identity? What does it mean to believe in the politics of Black Respectability? How do the white allies of people of color fit into the picture? What does all of this mean for the Common Good and shared issues of public concern?
You tell me...
In keeping with that openness of spirit and exploration, my plan is to, on a monthly basis, change the image that serves as the header for We Are Respectable Negroes. Are you a photographer or artist? If so, send in an original image that you think captures the spirit of We Are Respectable Negroes.
Legal stuff. All such submissions become the property of Chauncey DeVega and We Are Respectable Negroes. I reserve the right to edit or modify them. I will not offer monetary compensation for your submission if used. It must be an original work done by you. I will give you a mention on the site, and if you have a bio or other blurb, I will gladly post it, as well as link to your website or other materials.