Big sincere thanks for sharing all this! I learned so much and a lot of what you said will be invaluable to me in my lessons going forward. (I now know three new terms: bamas, Jack and Jill and WASP- I had to Google that last one)
I am going to take time to respond to some of the things that you wrote a bit later (more about the school I teach at, my students, and the different pieces of literature you brought up, etc. — from what you describe, ‘What You Pawn’ would be a perfect addition to our course material, but the curriculum hasn’t changed in over 25 years.) It won’t be as long as my previous response, so don’t worry.
For a week ever since you brought up Africans in Russia, I’ve had to resist the urge to walk up to ask them about their background when I notice any. Feels kind of weird though, asking a total stranger why they’re in this country based on their skin color. In my experience, there’s a good chance they were born here, in which case they could throw the question right back at me and ask why I’m in their country.
For now, hope you enjoy my little piece I published yesterday. I posted my last response to you right before taking all these pictures.