Nakkiah Lui is an Australian writer actor and a young leader in the Australian Aboriginal community, co-writer and star of Black Comedy, columnist for Australian Women's Weekly and host of the Buzzfeed podcast Pretty for an Aboriginal.
If you thought we’d disappeared, think again! Nakkiah and Miranda have a treat for you. Recently, at the Melbourne Writers Festival, they sat down with journalist, memoirist and comic book writer Ta-Nehisi Coates to talk about race in general, and specifically whether democracy is failing people of colour in the US and in Australia, and why hope is irrelevant in the face of political struggle. But that’s not all! They also invited Melbourne-based artists Birdz and Alice Skye to perform in front of the live audience. Enjoy this special live episode of BuzzFeed’s Pretty For An Aboriginal. (And please forgive us for the occasional audio echo and mic feedback. It was live in a large venue!)Credits: Hosted by: Nakkiah Lui @nakkiahlui and Miranda Tapsell @missmirandatapProduced and edited by Nicola Harvey @nicolaharveyPerformances by Birdz (and band) and Alice Skye.Opening Track (performed live at the Thornbury Theatre on August 29 for the Melbourne Writers Festival): Birdz, “This Side (ft Alice Skye). Reproduced here with permission from Nathan Bird and Bad Apples Music. Special thanks to: Makeup artist Rosie Kilvert @rosiekalina, Eddie Fitzpatrick and Marieke Hardy from Melbourne Writers Festival, Coco Eke from Bad Apples Music, and Carolyn Logan.
In this special live episode, presented and recorded at the Sydney Opera House as part of the All About Women festival, Nakkiah and Miranda are joined by actor and budding director Shari Sebbens to unpack the fall out from the Marvel blockbuster Black Panther. They discuss how and why colonialism has become a subtext for mainstream blockbusters from Thor Ragnarok to Black Panther, and consider whether Australia is ready to play with terminology seeped in the violence of colonisation. Can a First Nations woman jokingly refer to a white Australian as a “coloniser” without blow back? Is Australia ready to be playful with language and stories from the colonial period? Credits: Hosted by: Nakkiah Lui @nakkiahlui and Miranda Tapsell @missmirandatapProduced and edited by Nicola Harvey @nicolaharveySpecial thanks to: Tod Deely, Ed Nixon, Shane Johnson from the Sydney Opera House Recording & Broadcast studio, Sydney Opera House event Production staff, the Talks & Ideas programming team behind All About Women, and Uncle Richard Green for use of the audio welcome to country.
We decided to record a bonus episode because recently Australia’s prime minister Malcolm Turnbull landed a pretty big blow on Indigenous Australians. Last week, he rejected the Indigenous Voice to Parliament proposed in the Uluru Statement From The Heart – a way forward for recognition devised by hundreds of Indigenous leaders earlier this year. We’re recording this conversation in front of a small live audience at Junket, a Canberra conference for future leaders and people doing interesting things. Nakkiah Lui and Miranda Tapsell invited delegates into Nakkiah’s cosy hotel room to talk to about race in this country.And to ask them the question we ask all guests: when did you first realise your race mattered?We’ll be back in 2018 with Season 2, until then you can contact the hosts @nakkiahlui and @missmirandatapDon’t forget, you’re Pretty… For An Aboriginal.
In a perfect world Miranda Tapsell would be the star of a wildly successful rom-com, or a franchised superhero film. The Frances Ha or Jessica James of Australia, or an Aboriginal Storm in the next edition of X-Men. But in order to be Australia’s favourite romantic lead, Miranda has to write her own feature film because…let’s be honest — lead roles for Aboriginal actors in a rom-com aren’t all that common. But is there a shift afoot?Australian actors Blessing Mokgohloa (who was born in Zimbabwe), and Arka Das (Bangladesh), are increasingly being cast as the “hot guy” and the “best friend” in Australian films and on television. In this funny and honest episode, Miranda and Nakkiah unpack the layers of race and racism in Australia, and consider how TV is (or is not) reflecting their lived experience. And they explore the differences between the black immigrant experience and the black Indigenous experience. Is there a point of connection, or just layers of difference and hardship?
Nakkiah and Miranda talk about race even when they’re not talking about race. It permeates their daily experience. Across the first season of Pretty For An Aboriginal, Nakkiah and Miranda have talked a lot about how important African American culture is to young Aboriginal people. Across TV, music, film and social media, it validates and makes visible much of their experience — the experience of being part of a community that continually battles subtle (and overt) societal and institutional racism. But the First Nations’ network is also a strong, important community that in North America especially is carving out new spaces for protest and political change. And much of it is being lead by young, social media-savvy warriors. In this episode Nakkiah and Miranda talk to Anishinaabe TV host, dancer and advocate Sarain Fox about the lessons learnt from the past 18 months of social and live activism, and the new wave of young Aboriginal women who are leading protest movements in Australia and North America.