Tag Archives: race

Less Than Human

“People who treat other people as less than human must not be surprised when the bread they have cast on the waters comes floating back to them, poisoned.”

– James Baldwin

Radikal Readings: Women, Race & Class

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What can I say about the brilliance of Angela Y. Davis that hasn’t already been said? Like the other book by her that I recently wrote about, this is an absolute must-read. It should be required reading in every school. Davis writes about a history of the Black, Women’s and workers’ movements in the US and documents a side of the women’s suffrage movement that you don’t read about in history books as a kid. Her words are inspiring and the things she brings to light in this book are infuriating. It is incredibly well researched, presented in a straightforward manner.

It’s important to note this isn’t just about women, race and class, but  study that examines the prevalent racism in the certain women’s movements. A few of the reviews I’ve read by white women state that this book blew apart their idea of white liberal feminism, and that is a great way to describe. It is also one of the biggest reasons why this should be required reading, especially for non women/people of color.

Poem About My Rights

Even tonight and I need to take a walk and clear
my head about this poem about why I can’t
go out without changing my clothes my shoes
my body posture my gender identity my age
my status as a woman alone in the evening
alone on the streets
alone not being the point
the point being that I can’t do what I want
to do with my own body because I cam the wrong
sex the wrong age the wrong skin and
suppose it was not here in the city but down on the beach
or far into the woods and I wanted to go
there by myself thinking about God
or thinking about children or thinking about the world
all of it disclosed by the stars and the silence:
I could not go and I could not think and I could not stay there
alone
as I need to be
alone because I can’t do what I want to with my own
body and
who in the hell set things up
like this
and in France they say if a guy penetrates
but does not ejaculate then he did not rape me
and if after stabbing him if after screams if
after begging the bastard and if even after smashing
a hammer to his head if even after that if he
and his buddies fuck me after that
then I consented and there was
no rape because finally you understand finally
they fucked me over because I was wrong I was
wrong again to be me being me where I was
wrong to be who I am
which is exactly like South Africa
penetrating into Namibia penetrating into
Angola and does that mean I mean how do you know if
Pretoria ejaculates what will the evidence look like the
proof of the monster jackboot ejaculation on Blackland
and if
after Namibia and if after Angola and if after Zimbabwe
and if after all of my kinsmen and women resist even to
self-immolation of the villages and if after that
we lose nevertheless what will the big boys say will they lain my consent:
Do You Follow Me: We are the wrong people of
the wrong skin on the wrong continent and what
in the hell is everybody reasonable about…

– excerpt from Poem About My Rights, June Jordan

Radikal Readings: Women, Culture & Politics

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Let me start this post by saying Angela Y. Davis is an amazing woman, whom I look up to. Now that that has been stated, let me say this books can be life-changing for those who don’t know about the history behind the contents. It is dated now (written during the Reagan era) however, that doesn’t diminish the message, and sadly much of it still rings true.

I was born in the Reagan era, thus this book was at the top of my list of works by Davis to read. The collection of essays on being black and female in America and the world is an eye-opening read. Angela Davis gives us an articulate critique of the political, societal, and economic climate that defined the 80s, especially for women. She has such a passion behind her convictions that makes for such an engrossing read. She’s intelligent and provocative in her words.

It is an absolute must-read.

War

“Until the philosophy which hold one race superior and another inferior is finally and permanently discredited and abandoned…
Everything is war. Me say war.
That until the’re no longer 1st class and 2nd class citizens of any nation…
Until the color of a man’s skin is of
no more significance than the color of his eyes, me say war. That until the basic human rights are equally guaranteed to all without regard to race me say war!” 

― Bob Marley

Dissent

I wish I could say that racism and prejudice were only distant memories. We must dissent from the indifference. We must dissent from the apathy. We must dissent from the fear, the hatred and the mistrust…We must dissent because America can do better, because America has no choice but to do better.”

― Thurgood Marshall