The Black Euphoria Podcast examines the role of collective Black Joy in transformative change. Our first season, Searching For Wakanda is a miniseries for fans, by fans celebrating the Black Panther fandom and highlighting how the franchise inspires them to transform their communities. The podcast is produced by Picture Motion and Intelligent Mischief.

 

Audio editing featuring Roman Montagueo of RomyRoMixes.

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MEET OUR HOST:
AKILAH HUGHES

Akilah Hughes is a writer, comedian, and Youtuber residing in Brooklyn, NY. She’s been a digital correspondent for MTV, Fusion, Comedy Central, Crooked Media, and more. A Sundance Labs Fellow, Akilah most recently appeared on the HBO series special Pod Save America. Her comedic Youtube channel, “It’s Akilah, Obviously!” has amassed more than 150,000 subscribers. Find her on Twitter @AkilahObviously or on IG @akilahh.

Episode 1 - April Reign

As the creator of the viral #OscarsSoWhite​, April has been challenging the lack of representation of marginalized communities in Hollywood and beyond since 2015. Reign sustains a movement that has resulted in the most permanent systemic change ever seen in the over 80-year history of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. She is a sought-after advocate, consultant, writer, speaker and interviewer. In this premiere episode, Reign talks about the way that her experience in watching Black Panther in 2018 (many times) was transformational and how she is looking forward to having a similar experience from the release of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Listen now and follow her on Twitter and Instagram (@reignofapril).

Episode 2 - Mutale Nkonde

Mutale Nkonde is a UN advisor on Race and AI, member of the Tik Tok Content Moderation Board and author of Automated Anti-Blackness: why we need to name race to create just technological futures. Prior to starting AI for the People she was part of the team that introduced the Algorithmic Accountability and Deep Fakes Accountability Act, and is currently working with Amnesty International on a global campaign to ban facial recognition technology. In this episode, Nkonde shows us what a real world Shuri looks like as she reveals the power of storytelling and technology to influence culture and the everyday experiences of Black people. Visit AIForThePeople.com and follow Nknonde on Twitter to support her policy and educational efforts.

Episode 3 - Frederick Joseph

Fred is the sole creator of the largest GoFundMe campaign in history, the #BlackPantherChallenge, which ultimately generated over $43 million dollars in earned advertising and media for Disney and raised over $950K and allowed more than 75,000 children worldwide to see ‘Black Panther’ for free. In this second episode on The Black Euphoria Podcast, Fred shares how he came to be a cultural activist and writer, and how he is manifesting Wakanda once again through the release of his latest book, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, The Courage To Dream. Hear the episode and support his work by going out to purchase his book today at FrederickJoseph.com. Also follow him on Twitter and Instagram (@FredTJoseph).

Episode 4 - Jaia Thomas

Jaia Thomas is the founder of Diverse Representation, an initiative to increase the exposure and number of African-American attorneys, agents, managers and publicists working in the sports and entertainment industry. Diverse Representation provides a comprehensive online database of professionals working in these industries as well as networking events throughout the country.In this episode, Jaia shares her passion for increasing the power of Black leadership in Hollywood and how this will help to lead to greater power in the hands of Black talent and more inclusive storytelling. Follow Jaia Thomas on Twitter and Instagram (@JaiaThomas) and support Diverse Representation and learn more about your programs if you are an entertainment professional.

Episode 5 - Lisa Mae Brunson

Lisa Mae Brunson is Chief Visionary and Founder of Wonder Women Tech, host of the Wonder Women Tech Show Podcast, and a speaker, author, and a Social Innovation Alchemist. As a Black, Latina and Indiginous female, Lisa Mae is passionate about Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Belonging and Humanity.  In this episode, Brunson explores and imagines a safe space for all professionals in a time of hustle and influencer culture and how to still create lasting impact for people that look like her. Visit WonderWomenTech.com for more information on Brunson’s extraordinary work and follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter (@wonderwomentech). 

Episode 6 - Brandon Nicholson

An Oakland native, Brandon Nicholson is founding Executive Director of The Hidden Genius Project.  In his previous stint as a senior evaluator and consultant, Brandon conducted research, evaluation, and consulted on a range of projects related to intersections of education policy and workforce and economic development.  It was there that he began to recognize the potential for technology to bolster the domestic and global economy as Black populations (and others) gain more equitable access to growth sectors. In this episode, Nicholson showcases the power of innovation and partnerships across the diaspora to manifest Wakanda in real life for the next generation. To learn more and donate, visit The Hidden Genius Project and follow them on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook (@TheHiddenGeniusProject).

Thanks to our sponsor,
Pop Culture Collaborative!

The Pop Culture Collaborative is a philanthropic resource and funder learning community working to transform the narrative landscape in America around people of color, immigrants, refugees, Muslims, and Indigenous peoples, especially those who are women, queer, transgender and/or disabled. The Collaborative supports the growth of the pop culture for social change field through four interconnected program areas: grantmaking, convening and networking, narrative design and philanthropic learning.

Share with us how the Black Panther films have inspired you to seek your own Black Euphoria. Post using #SearchingForWakanda #BlackEuhporia and we’ll spotlight a few of your stories and experiences.

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