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James Baldwin

Despite Honest Attempts at Universality, "Amazing Grace" Falls Short

Alexandra Villarreal | Posted 07.17.2015 | Arts
Alexandra Villarreal

As the curtain closes, Amazing Grace gets a standing ovation, with shouts and tears to boot. Maybe, I missed something. Maybe, I don't understand. It's okay that I don't like it because someone else did. But for me, it is not enough. It's too trapped in "history" to acknowledge the history that resides inside us.

Harper Lee's Fiction Is Ta-Nehisi Coates' Fact

Jesse Kornbluth | Posted 07.14.2015 | Books
Jesse Kornbluth

It's a spectacular irony that "Go Set a Watchman" and "Between the World and Me" are published on the same day. One book is fiction, a footnote to literature. The other is perhaps the most important book of the year.

Dear White People: We Are All Atticus Finch

Sam Chaltain | Posted 07.13.2015 | Politics
Sam Chaltain

Being that Atticus Finch doesn't require that we attend white supremacy meetings, support police brutality or poison our own children with hate. It merely requires that we maintain our innocence amidst the maw of institutionalized racism, and mask our complicity in that system via periodic outrages at current events that clash with the saintly pictures we have painted of ourselves.

"God Gave Noah the Rainbow Sign, No More Water But Fire Next Time;" Black Church Burnings Post Charleston Tragedy

Gary Bailey M.S.W., A.C.S.W. | Posted 07.07.2015 | Black Voices
Gary Bailey M.S.W., A.C.S.W.

Over the years there has been a long list of attacks targeting predominantly Black churches in the United States as a mode of social control and as a manifestation of terror and White supremacy.

Dylann Roof Went to School

T. Elijah Hawkes | Posted 07.02.2015 | Education
T. Elijah Hawkes

Whether it's literature or some other key that opens the door, it's important that school communities explicitly reflect on our readiness to offer these children, and all children, the opportunities for moral development and moral leadership that our nation needs.

Can I Ever Forgive Evangelicals?

Warren J. Blumenfeld | Posted 06.15.2015 | Religion
Warren J. Blumenfeld

I noticed with interest and, quite frankly, surprise an article headline on the front page of The New York Times dated Tuesday, June 9, 2015, which stated: "Evangelicals Open Door to Debate on Gay Rights."

Not Your Mother's James Baldwin

Chase Quinn | Posted 06.09.2015 | Black Voices
Chase Quinn

A collage of song, multi-media and narrative poetry, Notes of a Native Song is as much an ode to the prolific artist and author of the essay Notes of a Native Son, as it is a critique of the canonization of Baldwin's work and the sterilization of his public image.

A Little Person's Antidote to Bullying

Johnathan Lee Iverson | Posted 05.13.2015 | Impact
Johnathan Lee Iverson

Imagine there's nowhere you can go where you are not the curiosity that tempts roving eyes and odd glances. Imagine that your very presence evokes a profile in the imagination of others, which instinctively limits who and what you are.

Gabriel Arana

How The Nation Is Facing The New Era Of Journalism

HuffingtonPost.com | Gabriel Arana | Posted 04.07.2015 | Media

Victor Navasky -- The Nation’s editor for 18 years, publisher for 10, and now publisher emeritus -- has a saying about the magazine: “What’s goo...

To Pimp a Butterfly: Redefining Freedom and the American Dream

Julian Mitchell | Posted 05.18.2015 | Black Voices
Julian Mitchell

Channeling the revolutionary essence of the Harlem Renaisance, Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp a Butterfly is a gripping, soul-driven melodrama that masterfully depicts the story of a courageous young man fighting through the painful process of liberating himself.

Ne Me Quitte Pas

Diedre A. Ware | Posted 04.28.2015 | Fifty
Diedre A. Ware

Nina Simone's music stirs the soul. I liken it to one awash in the Holy Spirit in a Baptist church on a Sunday morning. Her classical piano finesse infused with her jazzy and bluesy gospel voice is heard in all of her music, especially in all of her civil rights protest songs.

Hope and Struggle

George C. Gardner III | Posted 04.12.2015 | Black Voices
George C. Gardner III

Only in the last few weeks has the temperature in New York City descended to consistently freezing lows, yet I've been numb since last summer. I am contemplating still the murder of Michael Brown.

These Photos of Shelter Dogs as Famous Authors Are Awesome

Jen Reeder | Posted 03.15.2015 | Impact
Jen Reeder

I'm an English major, member of the Dog Writers Association of America, and big fan of animal rescue, so my heart did cartwheels when I heard about "Poetic Dogs."

What Would James Baldwin Say About Ferguson?

Alain Mabanckou | Posted 03.09.2015 | Books
Alain Mabanckou

Today it is less about defining or redefining what it means to be "Black," as it is about how we will carry on the flame of freedom that inspired those who died for our right to express ourselves freely, to say along with the poet Langston Hughes, "I, too, am America."

10 Things You Should Know About Selma Before You See the Film

The Zinn Education Project | Posted 03.08.2015 | Politics
The Zinn Education Project

There is a "people's history" of Selma that we all can learn from -- one that is needed especially now.

The Special Quality That Makes James Baldwin So Great

Off The Shelf | Posted 02.28.2015 | Books
Off The Shelf

By Pronoy Sarkar for Off the Shelf There is something about him. What is it, what is it? Oh, I don't know. I can't put it into words. But I'm telling...

The Militarized Divide

Robert Koehler | Posted 02.10.2015 | Chicago
Robert Koehler

Either we're united by our common humanity or we live in a broken world, a nation hellishly divided against itself, a roiling stew of privilege and squalor. And no one in such a world is free -- that is to say, fully himself or herself, fully human.

American Impunity Abroad and at Home

Ethan Casey | Posted 02.09.2015 | Politics
Ethan Casey

It's human nature to want to believe in the rightness of our own actions and intentions. But it's precisely human nature that is the problem; the fact that human evil is predictable does not make it excusable. We must be willing to consider ourselves culpable, and to put ourselves at risk.

Restlessness or Respectability? A Spiritual Freedom to Be Dangerous After Ferguson

H. Adam Ackley, Ph.D. | Posted 01.26.2015 | Religion
H. Adam Ackley, Ph.D.

African American historians, womanists in particular, have long warned that "respectability" is an elite ideology that encourages the marginalized to conform to sociocultural standards and mannerisms defined only by those in power.

'Is it Time to Do a James Baldwin?'

Malek Mouzon | Posted 01.25.2015 | Black Voices
Malek Mouzon

Deep down, whether I want to admit or not, I know the truth. The racism that James Baldwin knew and ultimately made him leave the country isn't really gone. It's just changed its form.

Addicted's Bille Woodruff's 'Naked' Ambitions

Brandon Judell | Posted 12.15.2014 | Entertainment
Brandon Judell

A faithful adaptation of erotica queen Zane's million copy bestseller, the romancer showcases the posteriors of William Levy, Tyson Beckford, and Boris Kodjoe as they try to satisfy Sharon Leal's Zoe, who's suffering from a hardy case of sex addiction that's destroying both her marriage and career.

It's Time to Redefine Renaissance

Jason Foster | Posted 11.24.2014 | Impact
Jason Foster

The Harlem Renaissance period is an era that I wish that I could somehow experience in my life. The allure of it. The thought that if I was a black male and educated in a variety of things that I would be considered a "Renaissance Man."

Ferguson Crisis Is Symptomatic of Many Other Injustices

Elwood D. Watson | Posted 11.15.2014 | Black Voices
Elwood D. Watson

The stark and wildly diverse perceptions that white and black Americans have of the crisis in Ferguson (and on race in general) is crucial evidence that the racial divide in our nation is still considerable.

How The Notorious B.I.G. Turned Fear and Rage Into Genius

Timothy Cooper | Posted 11.12.2014 | Black Voices
Timothy Cooper

"Ready to Die" is a multifaceted masterpiece, but its driving force is Biggie's supplication for America to recognize a young black man wrought with the fear and rage of existing in a life rooted in continuing stagnation.

For Ferguson, We Need Less Niebuhr and More Baldwin

Edward J. Blum | Posted 10.20.2014 | Religion
Edward J. Blum

We need fewer sighs and more plans; we need less complacency of an immoral world and more actions of moral women and men. If we don't, then we won't have "the fire next time." We'll have the fire right now.