Originally published in 1978, Black Macho and the Myth of the Superwoman caused a storm of controversy. Michele Wallace blasted the masculine biases of the black politics that emerged from the sixties. Here, she describes how women remained marginalized by the patriarchal culture of Black Power, demonstrating the ways in which a genuine female subjectivity was blocked by the traditional myths of black womanhood.
The Black Power Movement did yield certain gains—jobs, grants, scholarships, poverty programs, etc.—but many of these things are in the process of being lost, and weren't worth the price that was paid for them in any case. As long as black people are dealing in jobs and titles and grants, and not factories and land and department stores, anything they have achieved has got to be subject to the whims of the dominant white power structure and beneficial only for a select few. The majority of blacks are left with only the booby prize of an outmoded manhood that mocks their powerlessness.
In July 1967, Stokely Carmichael addressed the Dialectics of Liberation Congress at Roundhouse with a potent articulation of the relations between race, capitalism and imperialism, and "Black Power". During Black History Month forty-eight years later, we return to this prescient analysis.
Ahead of Verso's presentation of The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution with Dogwoof Films at the London Review Bookshop on November 12th 2015, we publish an extract from Carmichael's speech.
The Black Panthers, by Stanley Nelson, is the first feature length documentary to explore the Black Panther Party, its significance to the broader American culture, its cultural and political awakening for black people, and the painful lessons wrought when a movement derails.
Change was coming to America and the fault lines could no longer be ignored—cities were burning, Vietnam was exploding, and disputes raged over equality and civil rights. A new revolutionary culture was emerging and it sought to drastically transform the system. The Black Panther Party for Self-Defense would, for a short time, put itself at the vanguard of that change.
Frantz Fanon's The Wretched of the Earth (1961) was a seminal publication, analysing the psychological and psychiatric effects of colonialism upon the colonised subject. In 'Colonial Violence and Mental Disorders', he discusses the pathologies which result from colonial repression, as well as examinging their violent expression through a shocking case-study: the murder of a child of white European settlers by two of his young Algerian friends.
This article is part of a series for World Mental Health Day 2015.
François Maspero was a French journalist and author who passed away earlier this year. Verso presents this translated tribute to the founder of Éditions Maspero, the publishing house which has served as an inspiration for radical left publishing since the fifties.
A pair of texts by Mohamad Yefsah and Aymeric Monville
François Maspero died on 13 April 2015 at the age of 83. Here we present madaniya.info’s effort to pay tribute to this extraordinary individual and his eminent contribution to the struggle for the liberation of the Third World.