I don't know about you, but the past week was a bit full on for me. So, I spent the weekend (which just happens to be a long weekend where I live, yaaaaas) indulging in a bit of self-care. My version of Chriselle Lim's (aka 'rich mom') self-care routine to be exact! It was bliss and I highly recommend you do the same this week.
We've got an epic round up of BIPOC women centred news stories this week (don't we always?!), including a feature on Morgan Lynzi - she's amazing, you're going to love her work.
I'm also really excited to introduce Alesandra Hernandez to you all! Alesandra is the newest member of Team Glowreel - she's brilliant! Alesandra is the voice/wordsmith behind this week's historical woman feature on Raye Montague, and we'll be sharing her words in Glowreel regularly.
Let's get glowing!
News To Know
The UK's Mawa Theatre Company Is Diversifying Shakespeare
Gabrielle Brooks, Maisey Bawden, Danielle Kassaraté and Jade Samuels are the team behind the first all Black, female Shakespeare company in the UK.
Mawa Theatre Company represents women of the African diaspora and will address how Black and Black mixed race women are represented in classical text.
“Shakespeare remains a staple of British theatre ... He’s still the most produced playwright in the world and I think if we want to tackle diversity, representation and inclusion, then why not start with the Bard himself," says Brooks.
Their first project, expected to go live in August, is a series of free online videos inspired by Shakespeare.
On a (kind of) similar note, Nida Manzoor's new series We Are Lady Parts is diversifying TV screens. The series is about an all Muslim women of colour punk band and sounds awesome!
Speaking Of Diversifying Literature, These Women of Colour Written Books Are Shaping Modern Literature
Ria Pandey has compiled a list of six recent, non-fiction works by women of colour that are shaping the way we perceive the woman of colour narrative.
The list includes authors from a broad range of countries, from Liberia to New York to India. Brb, we're off to add all of these books to our reading list!
Glowreel Reco Of The Week
You need to watch: Creamerie - a brilliant dystopian series straight out of Aotearoa New Zealand!
The series is set in the not too distant future, where a viral plague has swept the earth. In a matter of weeks, it decimated 99% of men. The 1% were sent to The Facility in New Zealand but didn't survive ... or did they?
Created by Roseanne Liang, Ally Xue, JJ Fong and Perlina Lau, they wrote the three Kiwi-Asian lead characters for themselves after years of being offered roles as sex workers or 'dragon ladies'.
- This two-year-old is definitely smarter than you. Kashe Quest has an IQ of 146 and is the youngest member of American Mensa. For context, the average American has an IQ of 98.
- ICYMI, Dame Cindy Kiro is the first Māori woman to become Governor-General of New Zealand. "I know what it takes, hard work dedication and perseverance to actually succeed in life," says Kiro who has dedicated her career to those who don’t have a voice to speak for themselves.
- Michaela Coel's I May Destroy You won big at the BAFTAs. Coel won the awards for best actress, and for best mini series. I May Destroy You is about a woman coming to terms with assault. The series was nominated for four BAFTA awards.
- Verda Tetteh gave her $40K university scholarship away in a true act of selfessness. The Harvard bound student had already been awarded scholarships and financial aid to fund her education. When she was awarded the General Excellence Award (the $40K scholarship) at her school's graduation ceremony, she asked her school to consider giving the awrad to another student who might need it more. Yes, this beautiful moment brought us to tears too.
- Hip-Hop archivist Syreeta Gates is the first Black woman to appear on LEGO Masters. Gates is also the co-founder of Most Incredible Studio, a creative studio creating hip-hop inspired LEGO art. The LEGO Masters pits teams of two LEGO enthusiasts to compete to be crowned the country’s most talented amateur LEGO builders. Sounds fun!
- Add a bit of glam to your self-care routine, thanks to Chriselle Lim.Lim's routine focuses on the skin, the body and the mind and is basically #selfcaregoals. We'll be channelling our inner 'rich mom' (iykyk) during our weekly self-care sessions from now on.
Meet Your Rebel With A Cause ...
... Aka, Morgan Lynzi - TV host, wellness influencer and podcaster.
Lynzi is a storyteller who bridges the divide between wellness and culture in the most dreamy way possible - she's here to “make the revolution irresistible”
What is the 'revolution' exactly? According to Lynzi, it's all about “creating a life and world rooted in authenticity and wellbeing; for self, other, and planet.”
Lynzi brings the revolution to you through her Well Damn Podcast. Each week, the crew behind the podcast connects with experts, celebs, rebels, and mystics to uncover how we all can create our own version of a ‘well damn’ good life and planet.
Her wellness videos are the spark of inspiration you need to live your best life
Whether she's exploring her heritage and cultural history, sharing skin care and wellbeing tips, or sharing a recipe just because tastes good - Lynzi's videos are mesmerising.
She uses her content as a way to reclaim culture and use it as a vehicle for empowerment - and we are here for it!
Raye Montague: The OG Woman In STEM Who Broke Down Gender And Racial Barriers
By Alesandra Hernandez
Raye Montague broke glass ceilings for women of colour in STEM. The African American engineer and ship designer revolutionised Naval ship design
Born on January 21 1935 in Little Rock Arkansas, in the American South, Montague always had a mind for mathematics and science. This was further instilled into her as seven-year-old after her grandfather took her to see a travelling exhibit of a German submarine that had been captured off the coast of South Carolina.
Montague was fascinated by all the dials and mechanisms and she asked a man working on-site “What do you have to know to do this?” He responded, “Oh, you’d have to be an engineer, but you don’t have to worry about that," implying that as a black person, and a girl, she could never be an engineer.
Montague momentarily put her STEM dreams on hold, studying business at the University of Arkansas, which didn’t admit black students into their engineering program
In 1956 she moved to Washington D.C. to become a typist for the Navy. She pursued her dream of becoming an engineer by taking night classes in computer programming and engineering.
She worked her way up in the Navy, becoming a digital computer systems operator and a computer systems analyst in a male-dominated field. She became the US Navy's first female program manager of ships, continuing to excel despite everything that was working against her.
Montague made her mark in the Navy in 1971 - when she was asked to figure out how to design a Naval ship using a computer
Montague was given six months to complete the task … meanwhile the Navy had been working at this task unsuccessfully for years.
She tore down the Navy's computer and rebuilt it. She then figured out how to create computer-generated ship designs and designed the first Navy ship with a computer program, in less than 19 hours. No big deal!
Montague is a prime example of how you should never let any obstacles stand in the way of your success, even if those obstacles are a part of a larger system
Montague’s contributions to science and engineering were almost immeasurable.
But her name was almost unheard of until Margot Lee Shetterly's book Hidden Figures highlighted the achievements of black female mathematicians at NASA, sparking global interest in the achievements of other women of colour in STEM.
One Lioness To Another
“Representation is important in the stories we tell."