This So-Called Post-Post-Racial Life

April 2, 2009

What’s in a (Blog) Name?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — pprscribe @ 1:04 pm


On the 14th of January of this year, I posted my first entry to this blog. Prior to that post I had thought long and hard about what I would name it. Seems everyone has a blog, and so many good names are taken by bloggers who have come before me. I had decided on a theme and a focus for the content, and had early on developed a loose rationale for this space–one that I purposefully left rather open-ended to allow for further development:

…Some claim that we have been a post-racial society for some longer period of time and, in fact, continue to exist in such an epoch. Still others claim that “post-racialism” is purely the stuff of mythology…or wishful thinking…or willful ignorance…or cunning malice. Or some combination of the above.

Myself, I’ll grant we may have had a post-racial moment. But I am calling it over.

So now we are in a state of post-post-racialism. What will that mean? What adventures await us in this new era of racial relations and racial perceptions?

I knew I should restrict my choices to a name that would reflect that theme. We are not (if we were ever) “beyond race.” But we may be beyond that moment where (some) of us (not me, though) thought we might be beyond race or at least headed in that direction. So the “post-post-racial” part of the blog title was easy once I figured out a loose definition of what that means. But what goes with post-post-racialism?

I decided early on that I did not want the blog name to have anything to do with me personally. I decided my pseudonym would be PPR_Scribe, but I did not want the blog title to be that pseudonym. I am Black and I am a woman and I am a mother…but I did not necessarily want the blog name to declare these or any other of my identities. I sought to shift the focus away from me and towards the content.

And anyway–other bloggers have personality to spare, so it is fitting that their blog names reflect who they are personally. In contrast, I consider myself rather dry to some extent and in some social situations. Rather quiet. I was often the kid sitting on the side observing and writing in my head for later. Even when I am involved I can be somewhat out-of, as if interacting with others just outside of myself. In high school I got into photography and this, too, fit with my observe-but-don’t-be-noticed personality. So anyway, that is why the blog is not named after me–and, indeed, why the blog is “this” post-post-racial life instead of “my.”

I also decided that I would give my new space a kind of stripped-down, minimalist feel. Embedded videos are everywhere on the ‘Net, and on my previous blog I greatly enjoyed posting them. But I decided against posting them here. Thus, for example, when I participate in Old School Fridays I post links to audio instead of embedding video.

I also decided that I would only post black and white images here. First of all, I am drawn to black and white photography. I think the lack of color forces one to look at content, contrast, texture, line, light, and shadow–all things that I find most interesting about visual images. Additionally, there are so many shades of white, gray, and black that I do not feel any “lack” of color at all in these images.

I chose a WordPress theme for the blog that reflects this minimalism. No fancy banner images. No color. And the name of the theme was perfect: The Journalist. Yes! That’s who PPR_Scribe is: a journalist, just reporting from the racial front.

What about the “so-called” in the title? Well, I am not entirely convinced we live in a post-anything society. In fact, I find it pretty presumptuous to give a name to a time in which one is currently living. Surely that is a job for those at a much later date, looking back. So, this life–for now–is just post-post-racial in air quotes: so-called, but not yet proven.

There. The obligatory blogging self-assessing, self-disclosing, navel-gazing post is now over. My blog title has been chosen and whatever regrets I have after seeing everyone else’s cool blog titles have long since been stifled. Seven words, three hyphens. A work still very much in progress, but the blogger is definitely enjoying the journey.

Thanks to everyone who drops in to see how it’s going. Please accept this as an invitation to de-lurk and say hello.

And if you don’t mind sharing with me how you came upon your own blog title, I’d love to hear it.



  1. I think it is great, ironic, funny, true and sometimes our greatest messages come from naming things as we hope them, not as they are.

    Also thanks for the support in comments at Feministing. I appreciate and I will def add this blog to my google reader.

    Comment by Samhita — April 2, 2009 @ 3:37 pm

  2. Let me just say that I love your blog! I followed the link here when you posted over at Duane’s blog and I wouldn’t clear my history cache until this web address is etched in my brain 🙂 This post here only certifies what I felt about your photos.

    I have two sites. One is at and the other is at , the latter of which has the same name as the former “Growing In The Grace and Knowledge Of Our Dearest Lord Jesus” although I’m thinking about changing the name of the latter. I probably will as soon as I figure out a name that focuses on everything I want to blog about (which is practically everything). This is one of the reasons I haven’t blogged in a while.

    I used this title because it’s what I want my life focused on but I also want the title to not only reflect that but on extending HIS grace outward.

    eh, maybe I’ll just keep the title! 🙂

    Comment by Richard Froggatt — April 2, 2009 @ 5:21 pm

  3. Thanks, Richard for your kind words–and for sharing the origins of your blog names. I’m looking forward to checking them out. BTW, I get a kick out of the way, in your second link, you have shortened your name to “Rich Frogg.” lol

    Samhita, thank YOU for all of your hard work at Feministing. For a long while I had lost hope about the big feminist blogs and had stopped reading, let alone commenting. But your posts in particular have got me excited again about the possibility of a diverse feminist community having meaningful discussions.

    Comment by pprscribe — April 2, 2009 @ 7:35 pm

  4. I’ve enjoyed learning more about you and your blog. And the black and white theme and photos are a great way to convey your message! (Should I also assume that the “so-called” part of the title is – in addition to the other things you mentioned – a hat tip to tv series? I really liked that show.)

    Comment by Claudia — April 3, 2009 @ 2:25 pm

  5. Hello there!

    I am just stopping by to say hello! Keep writing!

    My forum is exclusively targeting black women and black women’s issues. It’s sort of like a panel discussion for black women to brainstorm solutions to social problems.

    Peace, blessings and godliness,

    Comment by BlackWomenBlowTheTrumpet — April 3, 2009 @ 3:38 pm

  6. a hat tip to tv series

    LOL, Claudia–you caught me! I miss that show.

    BWBTT: Thanks! Your blog has long been a fav of mine.

    Comment by pprscribe — April 3, 2009 @ 6:50 pm

  7. I love the title, the concept, and the blog. I have to say that you’ve put it all together with much foresight, and that’s a good thing.

    Lately I’ve been thinking of a name change. I don’t know, but I guess it is part of my blog growth. I have all these cool sounding titles in my head. But somehow I can’t seem to shy away from the Madness & Reality that is everyday life with my brand of tragicomic commentary.

    Keep up the good work. I’m looking forward to frequenting your slice of blog heaven. Feel free to stop bye anytime and don’t be shy.

    Comment by RiPPa — April 4, 2009 @ 12:12 pm

  8. Thanks, RiPPa. I know what you mean by “blog growth.” I have tried to allow this one to develop over time, adding elements as I become more comfortable and learn more about the blogging software, but without going crazy with blog bling!

    Personally I like your blog title as-is. Plus you’ve got to consider if it has already become part of your “brand”…

    Comment by pprscribe — April 5, 2009 @ 12:53 am

  9. De-lurking, saying hello. I actually wish I’d thought more about a focus before I started blogging. Most of my “serious” posts are around race, politics or the like, but a lot of times I’m just ranting or slack-blogging about whatever is on my mind. I haven’t done anything with my blog’s appearance in ages, even though I keep thinking about going more minimalist and taking out much of the crappery that is my sidebar. I barely find time to blog, let alone do an overhaul, though.

    I like your space and your look.

    Comment by more cowbell — April 7, 2009 @ 6:11 pm

  10. […] talked a little here about my initial decision to not post videos when I began this blog: I also decided that I would […]

    Pingback by Could Moving Pictures Hurt, Not Help? « This So-Called Post-Post-Racial Life — October 1, 2009 @ 5:46 pm

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