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Illustration by Jarien Skywall

I’m an introvert by default. I restore my energy in solitude. Quarantine for the foreseeable future? Sure. Work from home? Easy! Or so I thought. As someone who has mastered the art of being alone, from only child to international solo traveler, I’ve never felt so lonely in my life.

The pandemic forced me to downsize my social network. Although I’m an introvert, I’m quite social. I’m a performing artist, dahling! I live for the applause! I miss going to concerts, dancing, and losing myself in a sea of eclectic care-free San Franciscans. I miss my people, particularly acquaintances: a…


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Illustration by Joelle Avelino

FLASHBACK:

February 23, 2020: Ahmaud Arbery
March 13, 2020: Breonna Taylor
May 25, 2020: George Floyd

FLASHBACK:

January 1, 2009: Oscar Grant
February 26, 2012: Trayvon Martin
August 9, 2014: Michael Brown
July 13, 2015: Sandra Bland

FLASHBACK:

July 5, 2016: Alton Sterling
July 6, 2016: Philando Castile
July 2016: Black Lives Matter protests erupt around the U.S.

Tears fall down my face. I struggle to get out of bed to go to work; can I call out “black” today? I’m so stressed. I’m so exhausted. I’m always on edge, always on alert, looking over my shoulder. Am I next…


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Image by Alona Miller, Visual Managing Editor at The Shakerite

During my first year at Boston University, I completed an introductory writing research course titled, “African American Voices,” and learned a distinction that edified my racial identity and affirmed a sentiment on which I’ve been ruminating since childhood: There is a distinct application between using the terms, “African American” and “Black American.” The term, African American, describes an ethnic group of peoples that share a common ancestry, distinguished by the forced uprooting of native Africans to American soil via the Atlantic Slave Trade from the 16th to 19th centuries. This label also describes a culture, created by said peoples, that…

Paul Renolis

San Francisco-based queer performing artist, creative, and writer that explores black joy. prenolis.com

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