The Netflix series based on the legendary singer’s life calls for a compartmentalized viewing

Author’s photo of series opening title on screening device (Netflix)

In hindsight, I think splitting up Selena: The Series into two multi-episode parts, set the stage for the kind of disparate viewing that the series requires. It definitely has many good moments, but the series as a whole needs to be understood as offering a perspective.

A few months ago, I argued that Selena: The Series did not “drown out” the late singer’s presence as critics had written about, and was in fact, doing the opposite by highlighting important aspects of her legacy. …


What recent discoveries of mass graves in Canada and the United States tell us about survivors’ testimonies

Kamloops Indian Residential School, Kamloops, British Columbia (1950) Photo by BiblioArchives / LibraryArchives licensed under CC BY 2.0

On May 27th, 2021, the horrific discovery of a mass grave with the remains of 215 children at Kamloops Indian Residential School in British Columbia, Canada sent shockwaves around the world.

According to the CBC, the residential school operated from the years 1890 to 1969, with approximately 500 students from First Nations communities at the residential school in Kamloops during that time period.

In the United States, a solemn anniversary was marked on May 31st, 2021 commemorating 100 years since Tulsa Race Massacre. Approximately 300 African-Americans were killed in the massacre, which included the aerial bombardment and burning down of…


Silence on critical issues

Photo by Genevieve via Flickr (CC by 2.0)

Last month, I wrote about how direct and specific Meghan Markle was in her claims about her experience in the British Royal Family. Her interview with Oprah Winfrey on March 7th, 2021 was watched by more than 17 million people worldwide and was described as a ‘bombshell’ by many commentators. Since then, the fallout from the interview has been significant, with some reactions towards Markle being dismissive or outright hostile. Yet, many of the key points raised by Markle have either been entirely glossed over or ignored.

Allegations of racism raised by Markle in the interview have been met with…


Bystander testimonies in the Chauvin murder trial

“Cup Foods” by chaddavis.photography via Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

A child; three high school students; a 33-year old MMA fighter; a 61-year old man and a 27-year old off-duty firefighter all stood in a haunted cluster at the intersection of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue, in front of Cup Foods in Minneapolis, watching in livid horror as a man was murdered by a police officer in front of their very eyes. They were witnesses to what millions around the world in the coming days would only see through a video filmed on a phone by one of them.

As they took to the witness stand in the ongoing murder…


A few tips I find most helpful

Photo by Cristina Estanislao (United Nations COVID-19 Response) on Unsplash

In our increasingly online and digital world, it is essential to identify and stop the spread of misinformation as much as possible. First Draft, an organization dedicated to combatting misinformation worldwide, defines misinformation as “the inadvertent sharing of false information.” Over the past few years, I have been interested in taking note of some of the best advice and practices when it comes to navigating this exigent issue. Here are three simple ways that you can protect yourself from misinformation online:

1. Be wary of the ‘rabbit hole of algorithms’

In a recent interview for Amanpour &Co., journalist Ronan Farrow highlighted the role that social media algorithms played in…


A deeply consequential interview about racism and a sorely missed opportunity

Photo by: Mark Jones via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

To be living in the same time as Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, would be to live in a time when the British Royal Family had the opportunity to fully and openly embrace the first woman of colour in their inner circle, and all that that would represent for so many around the world, but decide against it. …


James Baldwin’s writing was deeply evocative — and resolute

“James Baldwin” by AK Rockefeller is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

“It is the innocence which constitutes the crime,” James Baldwin wrote so chillingly in his 1962 essay titled “My Dungeon Shook: Letter to My Nephew on the One-Hundredth Anniversary of Emancipation” in The Fire Next Time.

Written by one of America’s greatest writers during the height of the Civil Rights Movement, Baldwin wrote this letter to his nephew in the form of an essay. Throughout the essay, Baldwin speaks to the intergenerational trauma of racism that Baldwin connects from the 100th Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation to his own family. …


Streaming service Netflix will not add a fiction disclaimer for ‘The Crown’ and neither should it have to

“Street decorations, London, to celebrate the Marriage of Prince Charles and Princess Diana, 1981.” — Annie Spratt. Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

From the beginning, writer and creator of The Crown, Peter Morgan, has stressed the series is an interplay of both facts and dramatization. In fact, the Netflix series already lists “Dramas” as one of its genres, along with “British” and “Political TV.”

Season 4 of The Crown focuses on the period of the late 1970s to 1990. What seems to have struck a nerve for some is the portrayal of the marriage of Princess Diana and Prince Charles.

However, it would be a mistake to say that the royal marriage is the only subject that the series covers. The fourth…


A new Netflix series shines light on the singer’s life

“Selena Quintanilla Memorial Banner” by sanity_94 via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

The U.S. census bureau found that Selena rapidly grew in popularity as a name for newborn babies in the year 1995. According to the U.S. Social Security Administration, Selena was among the top 200 names of the 1990s.

A film about singer Selena Quintanilla-Perez’s life was made in1997, and the first part of a Netflix series titled Selena: The Series, starring actress Christian Serratos as Selena, was released on the streaming service on December 4th.

Upon its release, the series was one of the most popular shows on Netflix and proves, once again, how Selena’s legacy continues to live on…


A look back at political predictions from The Economist’s “The World in 2020” issue and Fortune’s “2020 Crystal Ball”

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

As the cliché goes “hindsight is 20/20.” However, despite a global pandemic, top magazines were surprisingly accurate when it came to their predictions about politics of the world in 2020. The Economist’s “The World in 2020” correctly predicted the increasingly fractured global response to Chinese telecommunications company, Huawei, as well as Donald Trump losing his bid for re-election. Fortune’s “2020 Crystal Ball” correctly forecasted the continuation of anti-government protests across the Middle East, such as the protests that took place this…

Sana Hashmi

Follow for articles on politics and culture. Twitter: sana_h_

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