I would rather be ashes than dust by @jakeweidmann



I would rather be ashes than dust by @jakeweidmann



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eamo2747 said: I'm confused about what Beethoven was doing in the black composers post. He was German.


By golly gee! I keep forgetting that Black people didn’t exist until the Fresh Prince of Bel Air came on television! Or that Black people existed in anywhere else than Africa even with slavery going on :) My apologies.

Anyway, here’s proof that Beethoven was Black:

"… Said directly, Beethoven was a black man. Specifically, his mother was a Moor, that group of Muslim Northern Africans who conquered parts of Europe—making Spain their capital—for some 800 years.

In order to make such a substantial statement, presentation of verifiable evidence is compulsory. Let’s start with what some of Beethoven’s contemporaries and biographers say about his brown complexion:


(Louis Letronne, Beethoven, 1814, pencil drawing.)

"Frederick Hertz, German anthropologist, used these terms to describe him: ‘Negroid traits, dark skin, flat, thick nose.’

Emil Ludwig, in his book ‘Beethoven,’ says: ‘His face reveals no trace of the German. He was so dark that people dubbed him Spagnol [dark-skinned].’

Fanny Giannatasio del Rio, in her book ‘An Unrequited Love: An Episode in the Life of Beethoven,’ wrote ‘His somewhat flat broad nose and rather wide mouth, his small piercing eyes and swarthy [dark] complexion, pockmarked into the bargain, gave him a strong resemblance to a mulatto.’

Beethoven’s death mask: profile and full face

C. Czerny stated, ‘His beard—he had not shaved for several days—made the lower part of his already brown face still darker.’

Following are one word descriptions of Beethoven from various writers: Grillparzer, ‘dark’; Bettina von Armin, ‘brown’; Schindler, ‘red and brown’; Rellstab, ‘brownish’; Gelinek, ‘short, dark.’

In Alexander Thayer’s Life of Beethoven, vol.1, p. 134,  the author states, “there is none of that obscurity which exalts one to write history as he would have it and not as it really was. The facts are too patent.” On this same page, he states that the German composer Franz Josef Haydn was referred to as a “Moor” by Prince Esterhazy, and Beethoven had “even more of the Moor in his looks.’ On p. 72, a Beethoven contemporary, Gottfried Fischer, describes him as round-nosed and of dark complexion. Also, he was called ‘der Spagnol’ (the Spaniard).

Other “patent” sources, of which there are many, include, but are not limited to, Beethoven by Maynard Solomon, p.78. He is described as having “thick, bristly coal-black hair” (in today’s parlance, we proudly call it ‘kinky’) and a ‘ruddy-complexioned face.’ In   Beethoven:  His Life and Times by Artes Orga, p.72, Beethoven’s pupil, Carl Czerny of the ‘School of Velocity’ fame, recalls that Beethoven’s ‘coal-black hair, cut a la Titus, stood up around his head [sounds almost like an Afro].  His black beard…darkened the lower part of his dark-complexioned face.’


Engraving by Blasius Hofel, Beethoven, 1814, color facsimile of engraving after a pencil drawing by Louis Letronne. This engraving was regarded in Beethoven’s circle as particularly lifelike. Beethoven himself thought highly of it, and gave several copies to his friends.

Beethoven, the Black Spaniard

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sityline said: What was your first initial thought on blackish? And what has changed since the screening?


Well, I first found out about the show from Tracee right after they shot the pilot, so I’ve been excited about it from day one. I’ll admit, the name…isn’t great. And I get why some people are turned off by it. At first glance it comes off like “A black family that’s not too black”, which is definitely side-eye inducing. But Tracee described it as “A black family dealing with their ish”, which I think is smart and really sums it up.  

I’ve seen the pilot 3 times now, and each time it was really interesting to see that the people around me were genuinely surprised by how funny it is because it’s not the “minstrel show” they anticipated. The thing is, it’s an ABC family comedy. It’s not meant to be super high brow or tackle serious issues. But, because it’s about a black family they do delve into talking about race and identity with their kids and general parenting themes. And since Anthony’s character works in advertising, they also touch on what it’s like to be black in a predominately white work environment and how mainstream media “borrows” elements of black culture when it’s convenient. And as someone who’s worked in advertising and media I thought that was really funny and spot on. 

Something else that’s really cool about the show that Tracee brought up last night, is that her character is written as a bi-racial woman, which is kind of a big deal. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen that in a network show. Most times bi-racial women are just presented as black, which speaks to the rampant colorism/whitewashing in the entertainment industry. It’s not a main focus of the show, but I think it’s cool that they acknowledge it in a way that’s honest rather than just erasing her identity and passing her off as someone with 2 black parents. It’s little things like that, in addition to Anthony’s character lamenting that he doesn’t want his kids to be colorblind, that make me optimistic about where the show is going. All in all, I think it has a lot of potential and I hope people give it a chance before dismissing it outright. 

And now here’s my obligatory "black-ish" plug that I’m NOT being paid for: "black-ish" premieres Sept. 24 at 9:30pm EST on ABC.


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