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    Living by the Clock of the World: Grace Lee Boggs’ Call for Visionary Organizing Matthew Birkhold April 17, 2012

    In response to a question regarding advice for young activists, 96 year old movement veteran Grace Lee Boggs recently told Hyphen Magazine that activists should turn our backs on protest organizing because it “leads you more and more to defensive operations” and “Do visionary organizing” because it “gives you the opportunity to encourage the creative capacity in people and it’s very fulfilling.” This quote made its way around facebook, twitter, and tumblr, as fans of Grace reposted it like it was common sense while others thought the quote bordered on conservatism.

    To better understand Grace’s call, we need to understand the historical perspective in which it’s rooted.  We also need to understand how visionary organizing differs from protest organizing, how Grace understands revolution, and that the way history develops means that ideas that were progressive or even revolutionary in one era, can become mental roadblocks to progress in another era.

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    Hip-Hop Nation: Mixtape Revolution? Xan West February 6, 2012

    A Review of I MIX WHAT I LIKE! A MIXTAPE MANIFESTO
    by Jared Ball

    AK Press, 2011

    “The ability to determine which forms of cultural expression are widely disseminated and which are not is purely ideological and serves a colonizing purpose”- Jared Ball, I Mix What I Like!: A Mixtape Manifesto

    I have a confession.  I’ve most likely seen every episode, reunion and thrown down of Love & Hip-Hop.  Critical consciousness intact, I sit guilty and mesmerized by one solid hour of television dedicated to black women man chasing, trash talking and fist fighting.  For months I’ve tried to analyze what it could be about me, my homies, and apparently a large segment of the nation that, though we know it is wrong, can’t seem to look away.  Many of us use a train wreck analogy to justify our attraction to such a rachet show: I can’t look away because I want to see how bad it gets. 

    However we justify it to ourselves, most of us rely on personal responsibility and question ourselves: why do I have this sick obsession?  But, I began to notice Love & Hip-Hop and the weave-pulling drama that goes with it, is always on the air—morning, after school, nighttime, and that’s not even the marathons. If one is to turn on VH1, Love& Hip-Hop is what’s on.  The other music channels are not much better.

    Jared Ball’s I Mix What I Like!: A Mixtape Manifesto properly places Black America as a colonized people within a nation, and therefore recognizes a colonized hip-hop nation within this colony.  

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    Occupy Opportunities for Collective Liberation - Catalyst Project’s Anti-Racist Organizing Strategy Chris Crass December 14, 2011

    Melanie Cervantes - http://dignidadrebelde.comMelanie Cervantes - http://dignidadrebelde.comCatalyst Project, a center for political education and movement building, has compiled a list of resources for anti-racist/collective liberation work to build up the Occupy movement.  The following is an essay from the resource list, sharing key insights from Catalyst's anti-racist organizing strategy and how it relates to the Occupy movement.  The resource list will be sent out widely soon.

    The Occupy movement is one of the most profound organizing opportunities in decades, because of its mass invitation for the 99% to step forward and challenge systemic economic inequality. For white anti-racists, this is a moment when we can engage with, support, and organize hundreds of thousands of white people to deeply connect economic justice to racial and gender justice. 

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    Occupying the Imagination, Cultivating a New Politics Vijay Prashad November 23, 2011

    Melanie Cervantes & Chris Crass-www.dignidadrebelde.comMelanie Cervantes & Chris Crass-www.dignidadrebelde.comMy heart makes my head swim - Franz Fanon, "Black Skin, White Masks"

    Part I: Bare Life

    Reports and rumors filter out of government documents and family distress signals to locate precisely the ongoing devastation of social life in the United States. Unemployment rates linger at perilously high levels, with the effective rate in some cities, such as Detroit, stumbling on with half the population without waged work. Home foreclosures fail to slow-down, and sheriffs and debt-recovery paramilitaries scour the landscape for the delinquents. Personal debt has escalated as ordinary people with uneven means of earning livings turn to banks and to the shady world of personal loan agencies to take them to the other side of starvation. Researchers at the RAND Corporation tell us that absent family support, poverty rates among the elderly will be about double what they are now. In other words, economist Nancy Folbre’s “invisible heart” is trying its best to hold back the noxious effects of the “invisible hand.”

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    So Real it Hurts - Notes on Occupy Wall Street Manissa McCleave Maharawal October 4, 2011

    I first went down to Occupy Wall Street last Sunday, almost a week after it had started. I didn't go down before because I, like many of my other brown friends, was wary of what we had heard or just intuited that it was mostly a young, white male scene. When I asked friends about it they said different things: that it was really white; that it was all people they didn't know; and that they weren't sure what was going on. But after hearing about the arrests and police brutality on Saturday, September 24th and after hearing that thousands of people had turned up for their march I decided I needed to see this thing for myself. 

    So I went down for the first time on Sunday, September 25th with my friend Sam. At first we couldn't even find Occupy Wall Street. We biked over the Brooklyn Bridge around noon on Sunday, dodging the tourists and then the cars on Chambers Street. We ended up at Ground Zero and I felt the deep sense of sadness that that place now gives me: sadness over how, what is now in essence just a construction site, changed the world so much for the worse.

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    Make Yours a Happy Home: A "Back in the Day" Review Kenyon Farrow June 20, 2011

    CLAUDINE
    BY JOHN BERRY

    Third World Cinema, 1974

    It has been well over a decade since welfare was a major political issue, regularly debated in public policy arenas and the media—and used as a wedge issue by Democrats and Republicans alike. But with an organized white mob movement called the Tea Party, who cloak a project of reasserting white national/global authority underneath a call for states’ rights and fiscal prudence, and the 1996 Welfare Reform Act coming up for re-authorization this year, we are bound to hear more rhetoric about welfare's validity and the need to forcibly compel more Black women into “appropriate” and “responsible” work, sexual, and reproductive behaviors.

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    Healing the trauma of post-9/11 racism one story (and melody) at a time Sonny Singh September 11, 2011

    photo by Renaud Philippephoto by Renaud PhilippeOnce the term terrorist attack was all over the headlines on September  11, 2001, something inside my 21-year-old, fresh-out-of-college self was dreadfully certain of what was coming next. Before I even had a chance to begin processing and mourning the horrific loss of thousands of lives in New York City, I was getting calls from even the most apolitical of my extended family members, urging me to be careful and “keep a low profile,” to not leave my house unless I absolutely had to.

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    Giving Thanks Vasudha Desikan September 11, 2011

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    A Work of Negation Kali Akuno August 12, 2011

    MALCOLM X: A LIFE OF REINVENTION
    BY MANNING MARABLE

    Viking, 2011

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    Demilitarization as Rehumanization Clare Bayard March 11, 2011

    The antiwar movement never died. The movement has shifted to the work of long-term, community-based organizing to mount a comprehensive challenge to US militarism. This work is growing inside grassroots movements led by veterans, immigrants, queers, and low-income communities of color. Everywhere domestic militarization burns to the bone, people are fighting for a different future. The mass street marches of 2003 sought to preemptively raise the political cost of the Iraq war. We always knew that beyond those marches we would have to confront the real human cost if the wars moved ahead.

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