Mar 27
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Jane Eyre: A Cinderella Story

“Tale as old as time. True as it could be” While these words, from Disney’s 1991 rendition of Beauty and the Beast, refer to the plotline of a man turned beast and the pivotal nature of true love’s kiss, they can also be applied to the fairytale archetype itself. Whether it’s the similarities between Beauty and the Beast and Princess and the Frog or Sleeping Beauty and Snow White, this archetype is present in countless movies from a myriad of eras.
Mar 23
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The Duality Of My Thanksgiving
Despite the abundance of stores full of Christmas decorations, Thanksgiving is right around the corner.

For me, Thanksgiving has always been a time of self-reflection but also a somewhat painful manifestation of the dual identities I struggle to balance daily. Amidst the holiday cheer and playful “Friends-giving”, understanding where I fit in can be difficult.
Mar 18
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The Youth Are Mobilizing

This commentary was aired on Vermont Public Radio.

Historically young people haven’t had the best reputation: Teens have often been characterized as too busy texting and tweeting to be aware of or to engage in current events.

However, despite this stereotype, youth have been organizing, most recently around gun reform.
Mar 01
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Chocolate Cake

The dark, decorated exterior of the ganache glazed chocolate cake tempted me as I imagined the rich taste I would experience with my first bite. I imagined the enthusiasm of my taste buds as they encountered the ornamented maraschino cherries sprinkled amongst the dollops of buttercream frosting. It sat there mocking me in the slightly dented plastic cover enclosed with a seal reading the word ‘Hannaford’.
Audio download:
Chocolate Cake.m4a
Nov 21
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Hijab 101

She be rockin it, she be rockin it(2x), she be rockin’ that hijab

K: But you think she’s oppressed

H: It’s a little short of the feminist movement

K: You think she’s mistreated

Aren't you hot in that?

Do you shower with that on?

What’s underneath that thing?

K: Why are you wearing that? You were prettier before

H: Can I touch your hair?
Jun 09
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Body Standards

Body Standards

By: Kiran Waqar

You saw my body way before you saw who I am
But that’s okay
I did the same to you
You took it all in
The outfit - meh
The face - blah
The body - ugh

I saw yours
Thin waste
Luscious hair and breasts
Beautiful baby blues
You are the standard

How can I ever compete?
Your clothes are great and so is your skin.
Jun 09
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By: Balkisa Abdikadir, Lena Ginawi, Hawa Adam, and Kiran Waqar

I can’t talk about black liv…
Don’t talk about it
There is an elephant in the room
I can’t talk about gay righ...
Shhhhh don’t talk about it
There is an elephant in the room
I am in my room
Watching video
After video
After video
Black girl talks about black power
Jun 09
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Welcome, Welcome, Welcome

Welcome, Welcome, Welcome

By: Kiran Waqar, Hawa Adam, Balkisa Abdikadir, and Lena Ginawi

Welcome, Welcome X 3 (softer and descending)
Lady Liberty: Welcome, Welcome X 2 more (louder and ascending)
Child your mother is calling you
Come mix into this melting pot
We invite the flavor, the culture, the warmth
Come to the land of the free
To the home of the brave

Whose land is this?
Jun 09
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By: Kiran Waqar and Hawa Adam

K: We are color changing machines
H: Our survival is camouflage
We have to adapt
K: I don’t mean to brag but if there was an award for best-assimilator, I think I would win
Actually, no, we would win
H: We are the queens of chameleons, the rulers of all
Jun 09
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By: Kiran Waqar

What makes us any different than a mountain lion?
A bumble bee?
A bat? A monster?
Is it our opposable thumbs?
The ability to understand the world around us?
The corny dad jokes?
The motherly affection?
What makes us human? What changes us from beast to person?
It is our voices
Our opinions that invoke change
That are heard from the tops of mountains