Monday, May 07, 2007

Bourgeois Summer 2007: Step into the Mainstream

Boughee is a slang reference to bourgeois. Bourgeois is a very loaded term. For many people it is a general reference to people from the middle socio-economic class or at least people who have middle-class values. And what’s a middle class value? Colloquially, it usually means placing high value on higher education, home ownership, financial independence, being involved in general political and social discourse, and having some familiarity with various arts. In essence, being boughee implies a person is well-rounded, grounded, and well-versed, though not necessarily well-heeled.

There are negative connotations of boughee, too. And among minority citizens, the negative descriptors are perhaps more common than the descriptors listed above. But, we’ll not address those items. Rather, let’s focus on the real essence of “boughee-ness”. And to do so means elevating the Fête Society and thinking about what the presence of persons of color at certain events and venues signal to others. It is time to think about how we shape audiences’ attitudes and expectations when we attend certain events en masse. By adding a significant amount of ‘color to the room’ we signal that Black people enjoy lots of things, and that we are not limited to the only participating in the stereotypical ‘black events’. Some events are fun, plain and simple. Color, class, and education have nothing to do with it. But for a variety of reasons, we don’t participate (or only a handful of individuals participate). We are a viable target audience to market and we should recognize the power of our demographic.

Therefore, it is in this spirit that I declare the theme for the 2007 Boughee Summer: Step into the Mainstream.

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