ChickenBones: A Journal

for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes

   

Home   ChickenBones Store (Books, DVDs, Music, and more)   

Google
 

The fact each of the documents was done in Haitian Creole makes them important,

Freeman said. "If he (Aristide) were addressing the international community,

he would use an international language, either French or English," he said.

 

 

Kansas University Professor Asked to Translate Aristide's Statement

Resignation Letter Written in Haitian Creole

 

By Jennifer Byrd

 

The director of the Kansas University Institute of Haitian Studies was called upon Monday by the U.S. Department of State to translate the controversial resignation letter of former Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

KU's Bryant Freeman, a specialist in the Haitian Creole language, said Aristide's letter never said, "I am resigning." The U.S. Embassy in Haiti translated a key passage of the letter as: "Tonight I am resigning in order to avoid a bloodbath." Aristide, who is now in exile in Africa, has said he was kidnapped and denied resigning his post.

Freeman translated the controversial passage as: "Thus, if this evening it is my resignation which can prevent a bloodbath, I agree to leave ... " Mary Ellen Gilroy, director of the Office of Caribbean Affairs at the State Department, contacted Freeman to see if he would do a translation of the document. "I didn't have a dream I would actually have the original thing," Freeman said.

Freeman said he was called by the State Department because he and Gilroy had worked together in Haiti and he is a recognized expert on the Haitian language. He's working on the fifth edition of his 55,000-word, Creole-English dictionary. Freeman has studied Haitian history, language and culture for more than 45 years. Freeman said he did not know what the State Department was planning to do with his translation of Aristide's letter, but he said he thought the document would be historically significant.

"I think this is one of the three most important historic documents in the history of Haiti," Freeman said. Freeman said the other two historic documents include a letter from the French emperor Napoleon in 1791 calling for the slaves in Haiti to put down their arms, and a 1793 letter by French Commissioner Sonthonax freeing the slaves in Haiti. The fact each of the documents was done in Haitian Creole makes them important, Freeman said. "If he (Aristide) were addressing the international community, he would use an international language, either French or English," he said. "Creole is the language of direct, honest discourse between people in Haiti. He was trying to communicate with his people.

Source: The Lawrence Journal-World, March 11, 2004

*   *   *

Organizational Petition on Haiti
As organizations and institutions working for global justice

 

Dear friends and supporters of Haiti

We are all deeply troubled by the daily horrors of civil unrest in cities across Haiti costing the lives of hundreds and thousands of Haitians. The overthrow of the democratically elected government of
Haiti by  a superpower like the US is a dangerous precedent. We need to send a clear message to the Bush Administration that such actions are unacceptable and we will hold accountable those responsible for these acts of injustice.

You will find below a petition letter that expresses our sentiments of outrage on the act by the US government to depose the leader of a sovereign state. President Jean Bertrand Aristide is the choice of the Haitian people and only they should have the final say on electing their leader.

We ask you to sign the petition asking for immediate and unconditional re-instatement of President Aristide of Haiti. We are also demanding an investigation into the role of the Bush Administration in its violation of international laws. We will use this letter to support current demands for Congressional
investigation. Congressmembers Barbara Lee and John Conyers, along with 24 of their colleagues have proposed the TRUTH Act, which calls for such an investigation. (Non-profit organizations need not be concerned about violating the "advocacy on legislation" clause of their 501.c(3). The petition does not mention this or any other specific Bill before Congress)

At this time, we are only asking for organizational endorsement of this petition. Please fill out the form below as completely as possible and clip and paste to send to: petition@haitiaction.org.

For more information on current conditions in Haiti, please visit:
http://www.haitiaction.net

Walter Turner & Kevin Danaher
Global Exchange, San Francisco, CA

Reverend Dr. J.Alfred Smith Sr.
Allen Temple Baptist Church, Oakland, CA

Pierre Labossiere
Haiti Action Committee, Berkeley, CA

Nunu Kidane & Gerald Lenoir
Priority Africa Network, Berkeley, CA

Dale Sorenson
Marin Interfaith Task Force on the Americas
Marin, CA

*   *   *

Text of Petition Below

 

Organizational Petition on Haiti

As organizations and institutions working for global justice:

- We denounce the US government for its role in the coup overthrowing the democratically elected government of Haiti and the forced removal of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide from his elected office by the United States military.

- We are outraged at the imprisonment of President Aristide in the Central African Republic, where he was held virtually incommunicado under house arrest for two weeks. We oppose any attempt that seeks to restrict President Aristide's freedom of speech and movement.

This act of "regime change" sets a dangerous precedent for the world and has a particularly destabilizing effect on Latin American countries. This US-engineered coup in Haiti is unethical and immoral and in clear violation of international and federal laws, for which the Bush Administration should be held accountable.

We demand a Congressional investigation into the Bush administration's removal of a foreign country's leader from power. We join CARICOM and Africa Union in condemning this removal of a
democratically elected president. This is not the first time the US government has acted in direct military retaliation against governments who differ from its economic and political policies.

Finally, we strongly question the role of the "free" press in its biased coverage of events in Haiti. Corporate media legitimizes the new government appointed illegally by the United States and France,
and continues to report that President Aristide left voluntarily, when in fact he was forced out of office through coercion, specifically by threats to the safety of his followers.

For the above reasons, we demand:

-The unconditional and immediate return of President Aristide to Haiti in order to serve out his term of office until 2006. Respect the vote of the Haitian people.

- A congressional investigation into the role of the US government in the deliberate destabilization of the Haitian government and the implementation of the coup.

- An immediate end to the repression and daily attacks on Lavalas supporters and those demanding the return of President Aristide.

- Support for Haitian refugees, including Temporary Protective Services (TPS) to refugees from Haiti who are fleeing the terror of their home country.

In conclusion, we are alarmed by the Bush Administration's audacity in forcibly removing an elected President from office in total disregard of international norms and laws. We are highly concerned by
the overall negative image of the US in global politics. As progressive members of the global community, we strive to co-exist with people and governments of the world in total respect for their
sovereignty, which precludes coercive military attacks on foreign countries and their elected officials.

*   *   *   *   *

The Impact of the Haitian Revolution in the Atlantic World 

Reviewed by Mimi Sheller

Slave Revolution in the Caribbean, 1789-1804

A Brief History with Documents

By Laurent Dubois and John D. Garrigus

*   *   *   *   *

AALBC.com's 25 Best Selling Books


 

Fiction

#1 - Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark
#2 - Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree
#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
#4 - Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper
#5 - Stackin' Paper 2 Genesis' Payback by Joy King
#6 - Thug Lovin' (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark
#7 - When I Get Where I'm Going by Cheryl Robinson
#8 - Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#9 - The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 - Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 - Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 - Don't Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 - For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 - For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 - Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 - The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 - Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 - Purple Panties: An Eroticanoir.com Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 - Stackin' Paper by Joy King

#20 - Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 - The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 - Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 - Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 - I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter

Non-fiction

#1 - Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable
#2 - Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
#3 - Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane
#4 - Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper
#5 - Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant
#6 - Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey
#7 - The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight
#8 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#9 - The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 - John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 - Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 -The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 - The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 - The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 - Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can't Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 - Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 - Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 - A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 - John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 - Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino
#23 - Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul by Tom Lagana
#24 - 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 - Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

*   *   *   *   *

Salvage the Bones

A Novel by Jesmyn Ward

On one level, Salvage the Bones is a simple story about a poor black family that’s about to be trashed by one of the most deadly hurricanes in U.S. history. What makes the novel so powerful, though, is the way Ward winds private passions with that menace gathering force out in the Gulf of Mexico. Without a hint of pretension, in the simple lives of these poor people living among chickens and abandoned cars, she evokes the tenacious love and desperation of classical tragedy. The force that pushes back against Katrina’s inexorable winds is the voice of Ward’s narrator, a 14-year-old girl named Esch, the only daughter among four siblings. Precocious, passionate and sensitive, she speaks almost entirely in phrases soaked in her family’s raw land. Everything here is gritty, loamy and alive, as though the very soil were animated. Her brother’s “blood smells like wet hot earth after summer rain. . . . His scalp looks like fresh turned dirt.” Her father’s hands “are like gravel,” while her own hand “slides through his grip like a wet fish,” and a handsome boy’s “muscles jabbered like chickens.” Admittedly, Ward can push so hard on this simile-obsessed style that her paragraphs risk sounding like a compost heap, but this isn’t usually just metaphor for metaphor’s sake. She conveys something fundamental about Esch’s fluid state of mind: her figurative sense of the world in which all things correspond and connect. She and her brothers live in a ramshackle house steeped in grief since their mother died giving birth to her last child. . . . What remains, what’s salvaged, is something indomitable in these tough siblings, the strength of their love, the permanence of their devotion.—WashingtonPost

*   *   *   *   *

Hopes and Prospects

By Noam Chomsky

In this urgent new book, Noam Chomsky surveys the dangers and prospects of our early twenty-first century. Exploring challenges such as the growing gap between North and South, American exceptionalism (including under President Barack Obama), the fiascos of Iraq and Afghanistan, the U.S.-Israeli assault on Gaza, and the recent financial bailouts, he also sees hope for the future and a way to move forward—in the democratic wave in Latin America and in the global solidarity movements that suggest "real progress toward freedom and justice." Hopes and Prospects is essential reading for anyone who is concerned about the primary challenges still facing the human race. "This is a classic Chomsky work: a bonfire of myths and lies, sophistries and delusions. Noam Chomsky is an enduring inspiration all over the world—to millions, I suspect—for the simple reason that he is a truth-teller on an epic scale. I salute him." —John Pilger

In dissecting the rhetoric and logic of American empire and class domination, at home and abroad, Chomsky continues a longstanding and crucial work of elucidation and activism . . .the writing remains unswervingly rational and principled throughout, and lends bracing impetus to the real alternatives before us.—
Publisher's Weekly

*   *   *   *   *

The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

*   *   *   *   *

Ancient African Nations

*   *   *   *   *

If you like this page consider making a donation

online through PayPal

*   *   *   *   *

Negro Digest / Black World

Browse all issues


1950        1960        1965        1970        1975        1980        1985        1990        1995        2000 ____ 2005        

Enjoy!

*   *   *   *   *

The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery / George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

*   *   *   *   *

The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

*   *   *   *   *

*   *   *   *   *

ChickenBones Store (Books, DVDs, Music, and more)

 

 

 

 

update 5 January 2012

 

 

 

Home  Toussaint Table