This past weekend, at a poetry workshop for mentors and mentees of Girls Write Now, I was introduced to HBO's Brave New Voices series. As one of the mentors in the series says, the series proves that not all young people consume mass media culture without questioning it, challenging it, and raising their voices against it. Many (if not most) young people--young adults--are out there actively dissenting--actively and *critically* engaging in the world around them. Railing and shouting in the face of corporate and media giants that muzzle true creativity; the forces of imperialism and colonialism; and oppression and injustice of all kinds.
Check out the below clips of teens letting the fire rage through them; crackling, regenerating, and transforming . . . as it creates hope, and breathes new life.
Here's 15-year-old Alexis, of Team New York City, y'all:
And Aysha, a junior at the University of Pennsylvania:
And Jamaica, "A self-described 'mixed mutt' in ethnic background, Jamaica says, 'I'm Hawaiian, Chinese, German, Portuguese, English, Irish and French. I am almost a quarter Hawaiian and definitely identify mostly as a Hawaiian.'":
Watching these young people rage and express makes my heart swell with pride. It gives me the push I need to keep writing work that speaks to their experience, and reflects their realities. As we head toward Thanksgiving weekend, these videos remind me that Love is the motivating spark behind all true and great creative expression.