Frederick Bancroft (1)
Fredrika Bremer (1)
Claude Bowers (1)
T. M. Campbell (1)
---Captein (entry needed)
H.T. Catterall (1) Judicial Cases Involving American Slavery and the Negro
Trade to America
African American Historical Society (4) W.E.B. DuBois
Research institute, Harvard University (5) The Atlantic, Talk
with Raplh McGill (1965) (6) DuBoisopedia
of Monte Christo:1762 - 1806"
---Geoffrey (entry needed)
Against the Republic
A. Hill (3) YouTube speech excerpt
___Gomez (entry needed)
William Rainey Harper (1)
Radicalism, 1883 - 1919 Presentation by author
Jeffrey B. Perry
Low Sweet Chariot
___HAY-GOOD (entry needed)
B. F. Hubert (1)
John Knox (1)
R. R. Moton (1)
___NORTHERN (entry needed)
(3) YouTube video: Singing for laboreres in Australia
Francis B. Simkins (1)
of the American Negro Academy
Charles Sumner (1)
(3) Painting: Flight Into Egypt
Jessie O. Thomas (1) (2) The Atlantic magazine (1901): The Undoing
___ VANCE (entry needed)
Robert H. Woodly (entry needed)
TERMS, CONCEPTS, ETC.
In a nation where the highest elected office endorses alternative facts, self-defense in the form of self-education and collective study are imperative. Self-study and collective education is a tradition within the black community. As early as the late 1780’s, white legislators passed laws the made teaching black people—or black people obtaining education—illegal. However, black people by hook and crook risked their personal welfare to learn to read and write as a defensive move. Some of the revered advocates of black people’s struggle for equality and justice—Frederick Douglass, Ida B. Wells, Malcolm X, Barbara Jordan—testify that reading and writing had an uplifting influence on their self-image to counter the negative stereotypes, the shade, that white society promoted. That reading and writing had a liberating influence on their ability to imagine better circumstances for black people. That reading and writing enabled them not only to analyze conditions but also to become effective activists and representatives to improve conditions for black people and the nation.
Since the January 20 presidential inauguration, the majority of voters—those who voted for the losing candidate—have expressed a crisis of confidence in the nation’s political leadership. One response has been to organize, to sign petitions, to march. Simultaneously, many are also individually and collectively informing themselves about America’s founding documents, especially the U.S. Constitution. Outraged voters have read the Constitution, or are reading it for the first time, in order to demand Congress to take measures to censure or impeach the president.
Public encouragement to study the U.S. Constitution began even before the 2016 presidential election. In a widely publicized moment during the DNC convention in August 2016, Khizr Kahn, the father of deceased United States Army Captain Humayun Khan, pulled from his breast
pocket his personal copy of the U.S. Constitution, offering it to candidate Donald Trump as a study aide on the criteria for American citizenship. And before the the current administration took office, a major film release riveted the public—particularly black Americans--to scrutinize the Constitution. In 2016, film director Ava DuVernay released her documentary, “13th,” which refers to the amendment of the Constitution that is famous for ostensibly abolishing slavery in 1865. However, Duvernay’s film exposes the loophole in the Thirteenth Amendment that ends slavery “except as a punishment for crime.” DuVernay’s film educates all Americans on how a willful government contrived to hold black people in bondage, extract their free or nearly free labor, and continue to support the ever growing capitalist economy.
Resistance to the Trump presidency has spurned additional study of our constitution. How many Americans, for example, first learned of the emoluments clause, the 25th Amendment, which is designed to remove a president, albeit under conditions somewhat ambiguously stated.
February of this year I and a co-facilitator began planning a collective study
group at a local bookstore in New Haven to answer such a question. Our motto is
that “education is activism.” We are people of like interest in making sense of
the present moment through collective study. In an eight-week course our
dedicated group read the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution and
viewed part of DuVernay’s documentary. We read these documents in conjunction
with the platforms issued by the Black Panther Party and the Movement for Black
Lives, the words of Dr. King and Ella Baker, among others, to learn how these
advocates used phrases such as the right to “life, liberty and the pursuit of
happiness,” in their call for justice and equality over the course of black