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‘Living for Change’ in China

This week, I received sample copies of the Chinese edition of “Living for Change.” The Index, which is the only section in English, lists the names of the individuals who had been a part of my life up to 1998 when the English edition was published by the University of Minnesota Press, e.g. my mother, father, Hegel, Whitehead, Lyman Paine, C.L.R. James, Jimmy Boggs et al. Last month, I received this email fr ...

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The woman behind Heidelberg

Tyree Guyton is world-renowned for his work on Detroit’s Heidelberg project, which transformed vacant houses on the city’s east side into found-art mosaicked sculptural pieces. But Guyton was not alone in the creation of the project. During a decade-long period spanning the creation of Heidelberg Project and its rise to international prominence, Tyree Guyton had a partner in life and work, Karen Guyton. Aft ...

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United Sound Studios, a Detroit music jewel reopens

United Sound Systems Recording Studio, the historic birthplace of hit songs from some of Detroit’s greatest musicians, has reopened its doors to the public for the first time in years, now as a museum and a production facility. From Aretha Franklin to Funkadelic, the studio has produced classic music and sounds for generations of listeners. ...

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Milton Durham’s fall doe fed a crowd of over 250 people gathered at the Northwest Activity Center, March 1 for the 9th Annual Wild Game and Soul Food Dinner. Guests feasted on everything from collard greens and pigs’ feet to barbequed raccoon and stir-fried snapping turtle, masterfully prepared by Adriene Durham’s Simply the Best Catering and Charnela Brown’s Full Circle Catering. Even the heaping plates di ...

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Fashion photographer Bruce Weber dresses up DIA

If corporate bankruptcy specialist and Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr gets his way, the Detroit Institute of Arts will no longer be owned by the city soon. The museum itself will still be filled with works inspired by the city that built it, and beginning on June 20 a new exhibition, “Detroit — Bruce Weber” will continue that tradition. ...

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Artist uses new work to link Detroiters, Syrians

Syrian-born artist, Ilham Mahfouz, recently revealed new works of painting and ceramics in an exhibit titled, “Syria: Crisis and Hope,” on display through April 12 at the Swords into Plowshares Peace Center and Gallery. Her work has been shown across the U.S. and the world, in places as far away as Egypt, Italy, New Zealand, Malaysia, Turkey and Venezuela. ...

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Trickle-down urbanism, no future at all

The concept of trickle-down urbanism is key to understanding the regional discussion of Detroit’s bankruptcy and current state of affairs. Trickle-down urbanism is a failing policy-directive, according to University of Pennsylvania’s history and sociology Professor Thomas Sugrue. Trickle-down urbanism is a take-off of President Ronald Reagan’s 1980s economic policy, which directed tax benefits and other inc ...

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Detroit shall rise again

Social change happens dramatically, yet is barely noticeable to most people. But to a patriot returning from afar to his/her native land, the change is obvious and can be shocking if not devastating. Since I was — in a way — living in forced exile from the city of Detroit for 23 years, many people of all races, age groups, ethnicities and educational backgrounds have asked me more than casually in the last ...

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Women’s History Month offers opportunity to reflect, fight

As a young girl growing up on Lumpkin Street near the historic Conant Gardens community on Detroit’s north east side, I, along with so many others, learned African American women, like white women, were active in the women’s suffrage movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In fact, Sojourner Truth, a former slave, became legendary as both an abolitionist and an advocate of woman suffrage. She of ...

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