Manual Amiri Baraka and the Congress of African People: History and Memory

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A Conversation with Amiri Baraka: Civil Rights, Black Arts, and Politics

My deference to Amiri and Amina Baraka as the most critical influences of my ideological and political development are unshakable. Yes, it was going to be difficult to pen a traditional book review but I must do my part to ensure that the historical place of CAP in the continuum of the Black Liberation Movement BLM and radical black traditions are firmly established. We also reminisced about life in our CAP chapters, sharing stories that were both humorous and moving.

We helped one another fill in the gaps of information and details that were lacking due to our geographical locations or our political relationships.

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We discussed pulling together documents, photos, videos, etc. We were emphatic that if there was to be an authentic book about the Congress of African People, its members would have to write it. The author reminds the reader of the contributions CAP made to both the national and international spheres of political thought and struggle. It also had formal relationships with several African countries as well as had ties to the liberation movements in the Caribbean, Africa and the Middle East.

These efforts were instrumental to challenging U. CAP was one of few revolutionary nationalist organizations that saw the electoral arena as part of a legitimate strategy for building black political power. Baraka is the son of Amiri and Amina. Simanga chronicles the inherent contradictions in transitioning the organization from a nationalist formation practicing Kawaida to a Marxist-Lenist organization.

There were internal struggles against patriarchy and around political lines in our united front work. Since the Ferguson Uprising, I have consciously moved towards paying more attention and homage to liberation history. The cadre of CAP were mainly members ranging from years old; we were a force to be reckoned with.

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We were trained to tap into the power of our people by educating and organizing our communities. Any, does better with young people. Kansas City. Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Jamala Rogers's interview. Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Jamala Rogers describes her mother's family background. Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Jamala Rogers talks about the importance of family photographs.

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Jamala Rogers describes her mother's childhood. Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Jamala Rogers describes her relationship with her paternal grandmother. Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Jamala Rogers describes her family's education. Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Jamala Rogers describes her likeness to her mother.

Amiri Baraka - Somebody Blew Up America (2004) - Reelblack #Unseen

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Jamala Rogers describes her earliest childhood memory. Tape: 1 Story: 13 - Jamala Rogers describes the sights, sounds and smells of her childhood.

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Jamala Rogers describes her relationship with her father. Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Jamala Rogers remembers her early understanding of racial discrimination. Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Jamala Rogers describes her mother's parenting style. Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Jamala Rogers recalls her aspiration to attend college. Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Jamala Rogers remembers her conflicts with her stepfather.

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Jamala Rogers talks about attending a majority-white college. Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Jamala Rogers talks about the black nationalist perspective. Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Jamala Rogers remembers her introduction to Afro-centrism.

Amiri Baraka

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Jamala Rogers remembers her move to St. Jamala Rogers remembers her introduction to Afro-centrism. Simultaneous Is there a, a period of time, I mean, how did, prior to the late '60s [s], if you called somebody an African American, an African, you had a fight and they'd be mad at you, you called them black, there'd be a fight. There's a, w- when did you start actually learning something about Africa as such?

Amiri Baraka and the Congress of African People: History and Memory (Contemporary Black History)

So, 'cause initially, I stopped pressing my hair but I didn't have an Afro, I just stopped pressing it. And then by, I think, probably after that first year, I did, I did the Afro. And then, you know, during that period of time, we were, you know, dealing with, you know, love Africa, Mother Africa, you know, that's our homeland. And so, you know, started wearing African clothes, yeah.

So when I'm photographed, you know, there's a picture in the yearbook when I was working with the kids on the yearbook staff, that I'm in full-like, you know African clothes and I'm in the center of the picture and everybody else is sort of on this, going down the steps and so I'm at the top with this big old 'fro and these African clothes.

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Or what is she about or what's she teaching those kids and is she teaching them that black stuff and, you know, but, you know, I, I would, I had like special relationships with the kids in terms of doing things for them that they obviously had an interest in but had nobody to cultivate it so like there were a couple of students in there that were really into poetry so they would write stuff and let me look at it and critique it and stuff and I remember one child, I don't know how I got into this, but I ended up teaching her how to drive makes sound.

So I, you know, I had personal relationships with them outside of the classroom but we definitely did a lot of, you know, traditional things but trying to add like some, some flavor of who you are and what you need to be about and that kind of thing, so. You know, you're coming from, you go to Tarkio College [Tarkio, Missouri], who on campus was talking about wearing African clothes or naturals or how did you all get it simultaneous? I mean, so they were already, definitely into it like from D. Louis [Missouri], so they were a little bit more advanced, just in terms of, you know, already doing this stuff, the communities doing it and one of the brothers that would actually take us back to the Communiversity, you know, that was a part of what they was doing so all of that was being sort of dealt with by peers and so, you know, and then we would like try to find out more of what was going on, get, you know, news articles.

I mean, we didn't have the Internet then, obviously, but, you know, just trying to stay in communication, reading black newspapers and kind of seeing how other people were doing things. So it really was like just a learning thing say like, what does it mean to be black right now? Ooh, they're wearing that, you know. The black light, we need some fluorescent lights, you know, so you know, you just try to just mimic, you know, what it means to be a conscious black person and all of us we would go to different places, everybody was doing the same thing, listening to Coltrane [John Coltrane] and, and black light, you know, at the parties.

So, so I think it was just really just trying to figure out what identity, what we really wanted to, to be and, and having the influence of peers 'cause I really don't recall, other than like the Communiversity, getting that kind of identity nurturing from anybody and certainly I didn't get it in Kansas City [Kansas], you know. So, I, I think it was really peer based and then, you know, whatever folks were learning in their cities and talking about what was going on, sort of just brought that into the fold.

There ma- there's a couple of us who are, you know, Socialist or Socialist leaning but basically it's, it's a mass-based organization from, you know, students to, you know, professionals, but it's basically working class organization.