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Luvvie Ajayi, Opal Tometi and More, Recognized In Essence's 'Woke 100 Women' Issue

Essence Magazine releases its inaugural 'Woke 100 Women' issue featuring Luvvie Ajayi, #BlackLivesMatter co-founder Opal Tometi, Shonda Rhimes and more.

The phrase "stay woke" like "on fleek" and "yolo" is well on its way to being inducted into the Overkill Hall of Fame. But for now "woke" still has some currency in today's climate of heightened online awareness.


For their inaugural "Woke 100 Women" issue, Essence has recognized black women who are using their awareness to become champions of social progress in their communities. Despite the over-saturation of "woke," we can't hate on a list that contains many of our favorite women. The cover features the likes of Luvvie Ajayi, and #BlackLivesMatter co-founder Opal Tometi—who were both honored on OkayAfrica's 100 Women—as well as a host of other trailblazing black women who have dedicated their careers to creating positive change for Black people in America.

"The cover stars are part of the #Woke100, an inaugural list of female creators, activists, educators, journalists, politicos and thinkers who are socially conscious and vigilant about changing our nation for the better," reports Essence.

We're all about recognizing game-changing, phenomenal women. Check out the full list, and revisit OkayAfrica's 100 Women to read about more groundbreaking Black women.

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Image by Mohamed Nanabhay via Flickr.

Activists Demand the Release of Omoyele Sowore and Other Political Detainees, Amidst Growing Attacks on Freedom of Press In Nigeria

"It feels like the '90s again," says Sowore's wife Opeyemi Sowore, about the recent crackdowns on political dissidents in Nigeria.

On August 3, activist and founder of Sahara Reporters, and former presidential candidate Omoyele Sowere was arrested for planning a peaceful protest in Nigeria. Fifty-four days later, he remains in custody.

Sowere has been hit with a seven-count charge, including money laundering, treason, as well as "cyberstalking the president," Sahara News reports. He is scheduled to appear in court tomorrow after being jailed for nearly two months, according to his wife Opeyemi Sowore.

He, along with several activists who have voiced political dissent in recent months have been detained by Nigerian authorities, denoting an upward shift on crackdowns on members of the press and attacks on basic civil liberties in Nigeria under President Muhammadu Buhari's administration. "This truly is a threat to freedom of press, freedom of speech and expression," Sowore tells OkayAfrica. "As much progress as we thought we had made, a lot of the events truly sadden me."

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Thousands of Ethiopian-Israelis Shut Down Tel Aviv To Protest the Death of 24-Year-Old Yehuda Biadga Who Was Killed By Police

"There is racism everywhere. I feel like I don't belong to this country."

An anti-police brutality demonstration consisting of thousands of Ethiopian-Israelis that was held Wednesday in Israel is yet another wake up call that state sanctioned violence against the black body is a global, ever-present issue.

These young people took to the streets and gathered in central Tel Aviv to protest the death of 24-year-old Yehuda Biadga, an Ethiopian-Israeli from the coastal city of Bat Yam, who was shot and killed by police, Haaretz reports. He was known to grapple with mental illness.

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Watch the Hazy Music Video for Burna Boy's 'Secret' Featuring Jeremih and Serani

Burna Boy drops a new music video for a fan favorite from his Grammy-nominated album 'African Giant.'

Grammy-nominated Burna Boy shares the music for the latest single "Secret," a fan favorite from his seminal album African Giant.

The track, which features American singer Jeremih and Jamaican dancehall artist Serani, is arguably one of the album's most fun and memorable tracks. The song gets a hazy music video starring the three artists in various dimly-lit, monochromatic settings. The video was directed by David Camarena.

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Listen to J Hus' New Album 'Big Conspiracy'

The artist's highly-anticipated sophomore album features Burna Boy, Koffee and more.

J Hus is back. The heavyweight British-Gambian artist returns with his highly-anticipated sophomore album Big Conspiracy.

The 13-track album features the likes of Burna Boy, who joins the artist on the upbeat track "Play Play," as well as buzzing Jamaican artist Koffee who appears on the track "Repeat," one of the album's clear standouts.

It also features a new artist by the name of iceè tgm on three tracks. Some fans have speculated that the mysterious artist is J Hus' sister. The album includes the previously released single 'Must Be,' which he dropped in November of last year.

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