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Jamie Walker is truly one of our future leaders. We will hear more

from Ms. Walker and the world is a better place for her being part of it



Books by Jamie Walker

101 Ways Black Women Can Learn to Love Themselves: A Gift for Women of All Ages  (2002) /  Signifyin’ Me: New and Selected Poems (2005)

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Meet the New Generation of Civil Rights Leaders

By Alanna Miller


Jamie Walker boycotts with her chapters, marches with her sentences, and riots with her words. "Do not be afraid of the spoken word, queen. For the use of the word and oral tradition is indigenous to our people, our culture," Walker writes in 101 Ways Black Women Can Learn to Love Themselves.

Walker, 26, published her first book this year which is part autobiography and part black feminist manifesto for the new millennium. Walker is the face of the next generation’s black feminist leaders.

"Jamie Walker is truly one of our future leaders. We will hear more from Ms. Walker and the world is a better place for her being part of it," said Janet Sims-Wood, a supervisor at the Moorland-Spingarn Research Center at Howard University, where Walker worked purchasing books. The Moorland-Springarn Research Center is one of the world’s largest and most comprehensive centers for the documentation of the history and culture of people of African descent.

Walker grew up in a single parent household in Oakland, California, surviving a childhood of poverty and abuse, which she shared in her book. She went to San Francisco State University, studying drama and black studies. After graduating magna cum laude, Walker acted in numerous plays with the San Francisco Mime Troupe and the African-American Shakespeare Company, as well as some independent films.

Walker became depressed though and moved to the East Coast and Howard University to get her master’s in African-American and Caribbean Literature. Currently, she is pursuing her doctorate at Howard University.

"I’ve never, ever in my life felt so bad," said Walker. "But out of the depression came the light."

The depression was further fueled by a falling out with her mentor, who in her book she only refers to as Olivia, to protect her privacy. The falling out was over Walker moving to Howard University.

Walker’s book was inspired by the depression and learning how to love herself again. She began writing it when she was 21 and finished the book last year.

"The book is about resistance, self-love, and power," Walker said.

All the criticism for the book has been positive thus far and the book has gotten considerable attention. Surprising, since the book was self-published by Walker’s JD Publishing Group.

"What best characterizes Jamie’s writing is a straightforwardness and an ability to get to the point," said D. Kamili Anderson, director of the Howard University Press, where Walker works in the marketing department.

"Jamie is a wonderful and talented person. I’m impressed by her insight as well as her warmth," said Yanick Rice Lamb, the former senior-editor of Heart and Soul magazine and BET Weekend. "She is a giving person who is progressive, community-minded, and sisterly."

The book has been picked up by numerous book clubs and literary publications, such as Black Book News. The notoriety has led to negotiations for a two-book deal with Simon and Schuster Inc., including a re-release of this book.

Walker is somewhat taken aback by the success of her debut publication: "It’s just now taking off."

Walker says she has gotten e-mails and letters from women, especially rape and abuse victims, around the world, including Italy and Australia, telling her how the book touched them.

"I think all women can find some insightful message in Jamie’s writings. I am very proud of her writing," Sims-Woods said.

Walker participates in traditional political activity, protesting the war in Iraq and for affirmative action, most recently. She is also a member of the Black Writer’s Guild of Maryland, which encourages young people to read and aids current black writers.

"One of the great things about Jamie is her appreciation of her past and our rich history," Lamb said. "She is also the first class of students in the Visionary Heritage Program to chronicle the contributions of our elders."

Walker’s elder in the program is Esther Cooper Jackson, one of the founders of Freedomways magazine, with W.E.B. DuBois and his wife. The magazine featured the writings of some of the most prominent civil rights leaders, such as Martin Luther King Jr.

"I think that the activism is fueled by my writing and my writing is fueled by activism," Walker said.

Walker is now working a "coming of age" novel that is partly autobiographical, "The Black Writers’ Guide to Getting Published and Marketing Your Books," and a collection of work and criticism of Sonia Sanchez with a forward written by acclaimed black author, Maya Angelou. Sanchez is a poet and a female leader in black writing. Sanchez taught one of the first black studies classes.

"It really has impressed me that so young a woman has such wisdom," Anderson said. "She has such patience with her peers [especially] with a lot of black women living in denial."

"I’m expecting great things from Jamie. She’s given us just a taste of what’s in store." Lamb said.

"I wanted to raise the consciousness level of the folk," Walker said. "[I wanted black women to know] she is a queen and a gift."


posted 5 October 2003

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#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 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


#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

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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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The Persistence of the Color Line

Racial Politics and the Obama Presidency

By Randall Kennedy

Among the best things about The Persistence of the Color Line is watching Mr. Kennedy hash through the positions about Mr. Obama staked out by black commentators on the left and right, from Stanley Crouch and Cornel West to Juan Williams and Tavis Smiley. He can be pointed. Noting the way Mr. Smiley consistently “voiced skepticism regarding whether blacks should back Obama” . . .

The finest chapter in The Persistence of the Color Line is so resonant, and so personal, it could nearly be the basis for a book of its own. That chapter is titled “Reverend Wright and My Father: Reflections on Blacks and Patriotism.”  Recalling some of the criticisms of America’s past made by Mr. Obama’s former pastor, Mr. Kennedy writes with feeling about his own father, who put each of his three of his children through Princeton but who “never forgave American society for its racist mistreatment of him and those whom he most loved.”  His father distrusted the police, who had frequently called him “boy,” and rejected patriotism. Mr. Kennedy’s father “relished Muhammad Ali’s quip that the Vietcong had never called him ‘nigger.’ ” The author places his father, and Mr. Wright, in sympathetic historical light.

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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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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 17 April 2012




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