I’m reading Manning Marable’s biography of Malcolm X and I was surprised to learn just how little he had actually done before the FBI opened a file on him. It was 1950, he was in prison, and he wrote a letter to President Truman opposing the Korean War and…
Is “importance” - however such a vague notion is conceived - what merited the FBI’s establishment of a dossier on X? How “important” was he - and to whom was he “important” - when he sent this letter? Or, was it the views X expressed that were important?— insofar as they were interpreted as sentiments potentially minacious?
9:22 pm • 23 July 2014 • 7 notes
I’m reading Manning Marable’s biography of Malcolm X and I was surprised to learn just how little he had actually done before the FBI opened a file on him. It was 1950, he was in prison, and he wrote a letter to President Truman opposing the Korean War and declaring himself a communist; that’s it.
It makes me wonder if I or any of my friends are being monitored by the government.
That question betrays an incredible trust in the virtue [of] our elected centers of power, or, about the same thing, an arrant naïveté. If this is a question that must be asked, sadly, you haven’t been monitoring the ledger.
8:20 pm • 23 July 2014 • 7 notes
In America, when a black man resists letting a white man put a rope around his neck, the black man is accused of violence. In America, when a black man resists the hatred that is being taught by the white man, then the black man is accused of advocating hatred. In America when the black man makes resistance against the white supremacy doctrine and brainwashing that have been done to black people to make black people hate themselves, then that black man is accused of advocating black supremacy which is only designed to offset the inferiority complex that he has from his overdose of white supremacy here in America.
So in America, black people should never be accused of being violent or advocating violence. In America when a black man says, “I have to defend myself,” you should call that what it is, self-defense. And if America has the right to defend herself, from her enemies, the black man in America has the right to defend himself from his enemies. If it’s alright for the black people in Angola to defend themselves against the atrocities of the white Portuguese, if it’s alright for the black people in Algeria to defend themselves against the atrocities of the French, and if it’s alright for the black people in the Congo to defend themselves from the atrocities of the white Belgians, then it is just as much so alright for the black people here in America to defend ourselves from the atrocities that these white American colonialists have been inflicting against us. Don’t never point to colonialism in Africa or Latin America, there are 20 million black people here in America who are thoroughly colonized than any black people in Africa or Asia have ever been.
8:12 pm • 23 July 2014 • 178 notes
—Listen … , he said. He’d withdrawn his hand on the table top automatically. —That’s what it is, this arrogance, in this flamenco music this same arrogance of suffering, listen. The strength of it’s what’s so overpowering, the self-sufficiency that’s so delicate and tender without an instant of sentimentality. With infinite pity but refusing pity, it’s a precision of suffering, he went on, abruptly working his hand in the air as though to shape it there, —the tremendous tension of violence all enclosed in a framework, … in a pattern that doesn’t pretend to any other level but it’s own, do you know what I mean? He barely glanced at her to see if she did. —It’s the privacy, the exquisite sense of privacy about it, he said speaking more rapidly, —it’s the sense of privacy that most popular expression of suffering don’t have, don’t dare have, that’s what makes it arrogant. That’s what sentimentalizing invades and corrupts, that’s what we’ve lost everywhere, especially here where they make every possible assault on your feelings and privacy. These things have their own patterns, suffering and violence, and that’s … the sense of violence within its own pattern, the pattern that belongs to violence like the bullfight, that’s why the bullfight is art, because it respects its own pattern …
He stopped speaking; and after a moment Esther, who was looking down now too, repeated the word, —Suffering … suffering? Why … don’t you think about happiness, ever?
—Yes, did you hear what that woman said? … I think it’s the artist is the only person who is really given the capability of being happy, maybe not all the time, but sometimes. Don’t you think so? Don’t you think so? …
—And what did you say?
He put down his empty glass. —I said, there are moments of exaltation.
—Completely consumed moments, when you’re working and lose all consciousness of yourself … Oh? she said … Do you call that happiness?”
— William Gaddis — from The Recognitions (via slothnorentropy)
7:47 pm • 23 July 2014 • 4 notes
“Dead corpses, the rotting body of a brother man, whom fate or unjust men have killed, this is not a pleasant spectacle; but what say you to the dead soul of a man, — in a body which still pretends to be vigorously alive, and can drink rum?”
— Dril (via crematedadolescent)
(Source: tomasnau, via crematedadolescent)
7:40 pm • 23 July 2014 • 12 notes
She got me on some Auto-Analysand type shit…
I think my problem is I’m a fundamentalist. I make the good the enemy of the perfect. Which means, deep down, I’m probably an idealist, a perfectionist; though my life—the way I live it, and the choices I make—violently, sorrowfully screams the total opposite. I want what none of us can have: the guarantee, and utter security, and absolute trust, faith. No one can supply that. I don’t think it’s possible. But I want that, and in the absence of it—or, when forced to face the grave unlikelihood that I can attain it—I recoil to the extreme opposite and say, “well then nothing’s worth it…if the perfect isn’t attainable, then the good isn’t good enough…fuck the good!” That’s a fundamentalist mentality, I think. A childish one too. But that’s also, I think, how I’m thinking about this issue of love/romance/partnership.
7:06 pm • 23 July 2014 • 2 notes
I think that I need to make a commitment to write - regularly. It might literally be one of the only ways for me to stay sane.
Say that again.
10:15 pm • 21 July 2014 • 13 notes
“You write in order to change the world, knowing perfectly well that you probably can’t, but also knowing that literature is indispensable to the world… The world changes according to the way people see it, and if you alter, even but a millimeter the way people look at reality, then you can change it.”
— James Baldwin (via dialecticsof)
(Source: fables-of-the-reconstruction, via todoelajo)
2:30 am • 18 July 2014 • 226 notes