Friday, January 10, 2014

The Passing of Poet Amiri Baraka

Amiri Baraka -poet, playwright and human rights activist-
dies at 79 (Oct. 7, 1934 to Jan 9, 2014)

Rest In Honor Amiri Baraka. Peace and clarity in the struggle to your wife, family, friends and fans as you've detailed in your amazing works. Thanks for the validation to us Amiri Baraka. For opening up our minds, showing the injustices when others were
reconciling with injustice as the norm, the dream. Job well done against
overwhelming odds Amiri Baraka. Rest in honor friend. R.I.H—Ezili Dantò, HLLN
Thinking about Baraka, I recall sitting in Ken Cockerell's apartment with John Sinclair, as Ken read Le Roi Jones' essay on the new revolutionary theatre out of the old Negro Digest. How we laughed with delight. I still have that issue. When I die, it will go to the land fill, along with most of my library.—Wilson

Amiri Baraka on his poetry and breaking rules

Baraka and the Black Arts Movement
By Michael A. Gonzales
10 January 2014

any young writers, no matter how independent they are as thinkers, want to be down with a cool group of fellow scribes. Flipping through library books, we read about the days of Ernest Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald hanging tough in Paris; Langston Hughes and Claude McKay doing their thing in Harlem; and the Beat boys Jack Kerouac and William Burroughs driving cross country. Some of us want to sit down at the Algonquin’s round table with Dorothy Parker, while others wanted to talk through the night inside Ralph Ellison’s massive Riverside Drive apartment.

Yet for me, as a young writer coming-of-age in the early 1980s, it was the discovery of the Black Arts Movement (BAM) spearheaded by poet Amiri Baraka which inspired me to aspire higher in my chosen craft. These were the cats, with their beards and their poetics barbs, who first made me aware it was all right to be me when I sat in front of a blank page.

Ethelbert Miller
AMIRI BARAKA 1934-2014

His fingerprints were everywhere. One cannot talk about black literature, black politics, black music, black theater or even blackness without mentioning the name Amiri Baraka. Yes, for many of us he was like a father - a guiding star. He was a cultural activist who taught us how to understand the motion of history. He was controversial at times because he was passionate and the times and our social condition demanded nothing less. Baraka taught us how to examine our beauty as well as our ugliness:

The nation is like ourselves, together
Seen in our various scenes, sets where ever we are
What ever we are doing, is what the nation
not doing
is what the nation

Long live the revolutionary spirit of Amiri Baraka!--Marvin X

Something In The Way Of Things

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