ChickenBones: A Journal

for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes

   

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We in this year 2006 cannot but / revisit for a moment what our

jazz shaped world might have / been without the sudden turns

 

 

 

In a Time of Chaos

             —for Ralph Ellison

                 

                         By Rudolph Lewis

 

 

We enter the year 2006 water-logged

Gum-shoe geared to what is and possible

 

Outsider and a reliable gauge

of what it means to be black

 

and an American, carrying on

our backs the spoils of 2005—uncounted

 

thousands face down in sewerage

with white doubts of a shared humanity

 

We in this half decade cannot but

revisit in our nightmare moments what our

 

jazz shaped blues world might have

been without the levee breaking our minds

 

into shock traumas, the swift changes of

cargo ships, the secret mandate of what makes

 

life hateful. Our creative swing

and struggle continue, for us there are no

 

hiding places in this displacement dynamic

of decisions made for dependent ironies. We

 

in our black cherry survival, sliced and diced,

offer a  most stringent reminder testing our tireless

 

presence of a rare hope for human freedom

 

posted 5 January 2006

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1493: Uncovering the New World Columbus Created

By Charles C. Mann

I’m a big fan of Charles Mann’s previous book 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus, in which he provides a sweeping and provocative examination of North and South America prior to the arrival of Christopher Columbus. It’s exhaustively researched but so wonderfully written that it’s anything but exhausting to read. With his follow-up, 1493, Mann has taken it to a new, truly global level. Building on the groundbreaking work of Alfred Crosby (author of The Columbian Exchange and, I’m proud to say, a fellow Nantucketer), Mann has written nothing less than the story of our world: how a planet of what were once several autonomous continents is quickly becoming a single, “globalized” entity.

Mann not only talked to countless scientists and researchers; he visited the places he writes about, and as a consequence, the book has a marvelously wide-ranging yet personal feel as we follow Mann from one far-flung corner of the world to the next. And always, the prose is masterful. In telling the improbable story of how Spanish and Chinese cultures collided in the Philippines in the sixteenth century, he takes us to the island of Mindoro whose “southern coast consists of a number of small bays, one next to another like tooth marks in an apple.” We learn how the spread of malaria, the potato, tobacco, guano, rubber plants, and sugar cane have disrupted and convulsed the planet and will continue to do so until we are finally living on one integrated or at least close-to-integrated Earth. Whether or not the human instigators of all this remarkable change will survive the process they helped to initiate more than five hundred years ago remains, Mann suggests in this monumental and revelatory book, an open question.

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Sex at the Margins

Migration, Labour Markets and the Rescue Industry

By Laura María Agustín

This book explodes several myths: that selling sex is completely different from any other kind of work, that migrants who sell sex are passive victims and that the multitude of people out to save them are without self-interest. Laura Agustín makes a passionate case against these stereotypes, arguing that the label 'trafficked' does not accurately describe migrants' lives and that the 'rescue industry' serves to disempower them. Based on extensive research amongst both migrants who sell sex and social helpers, Sex at the Margins provides a radically different analysis. Frequently, says Agustin, migrants make rational choices to travel and work in the sex industry, and although they are treated like a marginalised group they form part of the dynamic global economy. Both powerful and controversial, this book is essential reading for all those who want to understand the increasingly important relationship between sex markets, migration and the desire for social justice. "Sex at the Margins rips apart distinctions between migrants, service work and sexual labour and reveals the utter complexity of the contemporary sex industry. This book is set to be a trailblazer in the study of sexuality."—Lisa Adkins, University of London

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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)

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Ancient African Nations

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Negro Digest / Black World

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Enjoy!

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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

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

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

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update 29 August 2011

 

 

 

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Related File:  Heartbreak Hotel   No Mardi Gras Without Soul   Postcard from Hell  Ode to Bowling Balls   Naked in the Outer Darkness    Music That Heals   That Which Hurts  In a Time of Chaos    Down by the Riverside     

I Aint No Alarmist  Wintertime in America  The Propaganda of History     No Mardi Gras Without Soul    We'll Never Be Back the Same Again    Which Way Freedom  Mosquitoes Fly Out My Head