“I hear from so many women saying, ‘I always wanted to do this,’ or, ‘I wasn’t allowed in the shop,’ or, ‘I just didn’t think I could.’ There’s just a variety of things that hold us back from it, and some of them are totally practical, like it’s really expensive to purchase all of these tools, or there’s a space restriction. But a lot of times, it’s just like, ‘I didn’t feel comfortable working in these other spaces.’ And there are community ed classes, but there’s not too many just for women, and often those classes are taught by men. So trying to change who is in the leadership role while teaching these classes is really important to me.”Read More
The seven students in Jess Hirsch’s power tools 101 class circle up around a few work tables and a large, round miter saw. They begin by introducing themselves and their preferred pronouns.
The class, open to women and non-binary students, is one of nine different ones Hirsch offers at her new Women’s Woodshop in south Minneapolis’ Standish neighborhood. Hirsch begins that she prefers she/her pronouns, and laments that the guy at the lumberyard earlier in the day called her “sir.”Read More
More than 300 miles north of the Twin Cities, a group of 11 Somali-Minnesotan boys, ages 7 to 14 years old, arrives in an expansive forest within the Boundary Waters. Cell phone signals drop, and the boys breathe collective sighs of discontent. The van parks at the edge of Bearskin Lake, one of 1,175 in the Boundary Waters that are now frozen solid, making the area less of a boundary and more of a bridge.Read More
The very first written mention of the group of islands known as Svalbard, meaning “cold coast” or “cold edge,” comes from a 12th century Icelandic Saga. “Svalbard fundinn,” it reads in Old Icelandic, meaning, in English: “Svalbard found.” After the Vikings came, discovered, and went again, the islands were left to the polar bears until the 16th century, when some explorers arrived. Next came whalers, and Norwegian and Russian trappers, and then coal miners. Then came the tourist yahoos and, eventually, Tamara and I.Read More
DUCHESS HARRIS had just returned to Macalester College from a yearlong sabbatical when Ferguson changed everything. Many of her students in Intro to African Studies and Race and Law had never even heard of the city in St. Louis County until officer Darren Wilson shot Michael Brown, killing him in the street. Brown’s death provoked different interpretations of culpability, knotted up in power structures, poverty, and inequality.
“We couldn’t be in these classes not talking about what happened,” she said.Read More
MINNEAPOLIS — Simmering racial tensions boiled over yet again Monday night when several men shot five people who had been protesting the recent police killing of an African American man in Minneapolis. Police on Tuesday afternoon said they had arrested two suspects and were seeking others.Read More