Department of Social Work and Equitable Community Practice
Dr. Christiana Best began publishing professionally almost twenty years ago and continues to do so with her commitment to racial equity in systems. Along with her colleagues, she recently completed a research project on Microaggression in the Caribbean Diaspora and is working on two manuscripts. Outside of her research, she enjoys writing essays and poems inspired by her intersecting identities and experiences as a Black immigrant woman living in America, as well as the communities she belongs to and those she is pigeonholed into. The COVID-19 pandemic motivated her to write several essays, of which many are still unpublished. Of those already published, four were Op Eds at the Hartford Courant. One was a letter dedicated to her mother who is her role model, which was published on the Women’s Activism NYC website, and an essay on racial incidents on college campuses, which was published in the Journal of Blacks in Higher Education.
Dear Pearl, As a young woman, a newly arrived immigrant in New York, and a single mother, you worked three low-paying jobs to support yourself and your family, while parenting from a distance – also known as transnational parenting (Best-Cummings, 2009).
Hate crimes or bias-motivated crimes on college campuses are on the rise today. But let’s not fool ourselves: students of color have always been plagued by crimes driven by racism – often relegating them to living in fear on the grounds of higher education institutions.
The world is fixated on whether Joe Biden should run for reelection – particularly since he just celebrated his 80th birthday. The argument always begins with whether he is physically or mentally fit to run, and all the media agree that he is fit today, but there are many who are concerned that at 82 years it will be asking too much of him.
When looking at social unrest and riots, remember the history of white violence against Black Americans
Following the riots in the aftermath of George Floyd’s murder, many asked, “Why are they [Black people] destroying their own neighborhoods?” While clearly misguided and misinformed, questions like this are part of a much larger problem.
Mother’s Day was bittersweet for me. I was haunted by the image of an unarmed black man wearing a white T-shirt and khaki shorts, jogging down the road toward two armed white men, one with a shotgun and the other with a .357 Magnum.
Recently, Harvard University appointed Dr. Claudine Gay as its 30th president. My first reaction was excitement; then after a bit of research, I learned more impressive details about this trailblazer. A quick review informs us that Dr. Gay not only successfully completes her academic degrees in higher education but this high achiever does it with additional accolades.
When most Americans hear “affirmative action,” they often think the phrase is referring to a policy that protects African Americans. What many Americans don’t know is that affirmative actions are policies that were made by white people, to benefit white people, exclusively.
Historical reenactments have become a thing now. These “living history” activities are often staged performances that bring history to life for public consumption, under the guise of educational and entertainment purposes.
Navigating multiple identities in the American workplace: Microaggression and the Caribbean diaspora
While the issue of microaggressions has been studied for marginalized groups, research on microaggressions directed at Caribbean and Central American immigrants, a population whose identities are merged in the more visible Latinx, African American, or Asian-American identities, is rare.
Additional Published Works
Best-Giacomini, C. (2020). I Too Am DACA. Reflection: Narratives of Professional Helping. Volume 26, No. 3, pp. 34-40.
Best-Giacomini, C. (2017). Transnational Parenting: The Hidden Costs of the Search for a “Better Life.” A. Burackweiss, et.al. (Ed.), Narrative Social Work Practice: The Power and Possibility of Story. Columbia University Press.
Best-Giacomini, C. Howard, A. Ilian, H. (2016). A Racial Equity Staff Development Strategy for Public Human Service Organizations. In A. Carten (Ed.), Transforming Health and Human Services: An antiracist strategy. Oxford University Press.
Best-Giacomini, C. (December, 2015). Transnational Families. The SAGE Encyclopedia of Economics and Society. SAGE Publications, pp. 1617-1619.
Best, C. (April 2014). Kinship Care and Transnational Parenting: The Intersection of Cultural Values and Practices. Journal of Family Social Work, 17:2, 119-135.
Best, C. (2014). Transnational Parenting in the African-Caribbean Community. In L. Mathews (Ed.), English-speaking Caribbean immigrants: Transnational identities. New York: University Press of America, Inc.
Best-Cummings, C. (September, 2011). Ms. Magazine Online Blog My Story-Our Story on the Impact of Immigration Reform on Mexican Immigrants in the Southern States.