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ZORA
Celebrating and centering the experiences of women of color.

It’s time for another fresh start

Point of view: It’s a gloriously sunny day. Not too hot where I’m dripping sweat and my forehead shines from a mile away, but warm enough where the sun just kisses my shoulders and the light breeze fills my lungs refreshingly. I’m waiting at the crosswalk in the city, any city, and a young Brown girl and her mother walk up beside me. I look down at her and she stares up at my big, full, kinky, curly ‘fro in awe. I smile and feel a mixture of badassery and warmth.

My hair has always meant more to me than…


MY PEN IS MIGHTY

Burdened with a long, racist past for workers and customers, the gratuity system deserves to be forever shelved

Many hospitality workers are at the mercy of their customers. Photo: Getty Images

There is one reason — and one reason only — why I never took a job in the service industry where tipping was involved: My mother told me not to.

She used to tell a story of her waitressing days in the early 1960s when a White female customer left her two cents. Two cents. As my mother retells it, she took one look at that pitiful tip, looked the woman straight in her eyes, and said, “You keep it. You obviously need it more than I do.”

Her experience echoes the sentiments of many who believe that tipping encourages…


Publish your story celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, and you may be featured in ZORA

Hi, ZORA fam, happy Hispanic Heritage Month! For the next 30 days, we’ll celebrate and learn about the histories, cultures, and impacts of our Hispanic and Latinx ancestors, neighbors, and family.

This month, want to hear from you! If you identify as Latinx, Hispanic, Afro-Latinx, or anywhere in between, how do you express pride in your heritage? What are the aspects of your culture that you love the most? Are there any Hispanic or Latina/Latinx women you admire? How do they inspire you? What role do they play in your life? What have you learned about your heritage recently? Have…


I know I won’t pass the white sock test and I don’t care.

Photo by Jonathan Francisca on Unsplash

This is a righteous rant — so buckle up buttercup this Black chick’s magic doesn’t include a broomstick or Airwick.

Hi, one of the ladies from GFC entering the chat.

I’m a bougie negro who does not enjoy cleaning.

I love bleach and clean often — but only because I was raised that way, it’s not my birthright or a natural inclination.


WOMANISM + CULTURE

Megan Thee Stallion challenges men by living her truth

Megan Thee Stallion | Photo Credit | TIME Magazine

When a strong woman pulls up to the scene, people stop and take notice. However, let’s be honest for a moment. Not everyone likes what they see. From jealous glances to outright misogynoir, strong Black women get a bad rap simply for living their truth.

Megan Thee Stallion’s star-studded career and tongue-twister witty lyrics still have some men clutching their pearls. You would think they would give up their opposition after “WAP.” After all, that was a mic-drop moment. But, many men keep holding onto respectability politics like it’s the last ticket out of town.

Men who feel uneasy in…


An imperfect poem about Black women

Photo by Jackie Parker on Unsplash

We need everyone to understand this:

We are human — just like you

We deserve respect, protection, and compassion — just like you

We have good and bad days — just like you

We have brilliant thoughts and endless potential — just like you

We have bills and responsibilities — just like you

We have feelings and want support — just like you

We are independent but would appreciate some help and gratitude — just like you

We get sick and tired and have moments of weakness — just like you

We suffer loss and deserve sympathy, space, and grace…


It’s surely not what you think

Photo by Lechon Kirb on Unsplash

I was a 9-year-old girl from Sierra Leone, West Africa when I moved to Switzerland. I faced horrendous bullying and racism at school in this predominantly white country, and it affected me immensely.

In school, I used to feel a lot of anxiety in the afternoons because as soon as the bell rang signaling the end of class, I knew that I would need to run as fastest as I could to get off the school’s premises. If I didn’t, the bullies would catch me. …


The pandemic has revealed how tired women are from work and housework. Did the gains from second-wave feminism deliver liberation or overworked and underpaid women?

In her 2016 Netflix comedy special Baby Cobra, Ali Wong performed her set while looking very pregnant onstage. This was the first time I heard anti-work rhetoric, and it was framed in opposition to feminism. Wearing a dress, flats, and her unborn child in her belly, Wong joked that feminists had been wrong to conquer the right to work. “I don’t wanna lean in, okay? I wanna lie down,” she fervently told the audience. “I want to lie the fuck down. I think feminism is the worst thing that ever happened to women. Our job used to be no job…


Economic instability, climate change, and White Christian fascism made a maelstrom

The Statue of Liberty is broken and nearly underwater in this creative artwork. Image: Getty Images

Twenty-eight years ago, famed science-fiction author Octavia Butler published her apocalyptically prescient bestselling novel Parable of the Sower, which illustrated what America would look like when climate change, economic instability, and a white Evangelical Christian fascist movement took hold and converged.

Sound familiar?

The eeriest part about this novel is the way in which cultural and political norms were slowly erased. There was no major war, no invasion; instead, a sense of collective lethargy set in across the nation, and things went from bad to worse. Religious fundamentalism seized the country, slavery was reintroduced, water was scarce, and all the…


SPIRIT MEDICINE

Amber the Alchemist: ‘This week practice radical acceptance’

A closer look at the “Mirror” card in the Awakened Soul Oracle deck by Ethony.

“Uhambo” (or the Chariot) meaning “the journey” or “traveling forward” in the Xhosa language serves as a wake-up call to zoom past our fears and worries, trusting that we are not only divinely guided but divinely protected. Amplifying last week’s message of taking one step forward, we are urged this week to courageously soar and claim what we want for ourselves.

When you look at yourself in the mirror, a reflection of someone who is “not ready yet” may appear, but the only way to see someone who is ready is to get ready. …

ZORA

Celebrating and centering the experiences of women of color.

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