We heart Ericka Hart and we’re pretty sure after this episode you’ll also be smitten. Ericka is a kinky, poly cancer-warrior, as well as an activist, educator, and performer. She holds a Master’s of Education in Human Sexuality from Widener University and has taught sexuality education for elementary aged youth to adults across New York City for the past 10 years. And, to top it all off, she was a Peace Corps HIV/AIDs volunteer in Ethiopia from 2008-2010. So what are you doing with your life?
In all seriousness, it’s not Ericka’s impressive bio that leaves us inspired — rather the powerful use of her voice to represent a silenced majority.
Diagnosed with bilateral breast cancer in May 2014 at the age of 28, she realized there was no representation of black/queer people in the cancer community. So… while also kicking cancer’s ass, Ericka took it upon herself to shift ingrained cultural attitudes around chronic illness.
When she attended the Afro-Punk festival shortly after having a double mastectomy, she chose to go topless to raise awareness, and, long story short, subsequently blew up the Internet. Her photo went viral and she quickly amassed legions of grateful followers.
Today Ericka uses her platform to reach hundreds of thousands of people around the world on social media — which is exactly where we discovered her (holler Insta!). If you’re interested in hearing a different cancer perspective to that which is shown in the mainstream media, or if you’re simply looking to feel moved and empowered by a woman who speaks her truth no matter how far it falls outside the ‘cultural norm’ join us this week as we talk Cancer, Casually.
Listen on iTunes.