I've been wanting to learn more about the Sufi branch of Islam for a while, and also am interested in material on 'states of mind,' looks fascinating...moreI've been wanting to learn more about the Sufi branch of Islam for a while, and also am interested in material on 'states of mind,' looks fascinating and a lot of fun.(less)
Sounds fascinating in terms of learning the history of the major parties to most of today's conflicts. Depending on how military-ish it is, vs. big pi...moreSounds fascinating in terms of learning the history of the major parties to most of today's conflicts. Depending on how military-ish it is, vs. big picture-synthesis etc.. (less)
I have just been having my daughter and I watch the tv mini-series based on this book; both because of Obama's historic inauguration coming up, and be...moreI have just been having my daughter and I watch the tv mini-series based on this book; both because of Obama's historic inauguration coming up, and because she is studying American History this year.
And it's been just as jolting and uncomfortable for me as I thought it would be, but for additional reasons than what I expected.
Of course all the humiliation and degradation and viciousness of the white population is horrifying.
But there were significant things that had escaped my attention when I watched it decades ago.
One, I missed the fact that Kunta Kinte was raised in a Muslim family, a Muslim community. Given the statements of the characters that atleast they were bringing God to a God-less people, that is huge.
The other is the rank insanity and surrealness of the paradigm of slavery created by the slave-owning community. For instance, in the scene just after it was discovered that Kizzy wrote the fake traveling pass for her lover, the slave owner's comments range from 'we're all a family, how could you betray me' to 'as a slave, you must obey'.. and those two paradigms are completely contradictory!
And through and through, if you look at it clearly, it was completely insane. As I've thought about it, it seems to me to an extent the insanity has never ceased.
I mean, first the slaves were freed and promised land - and not given it. So for many the relations remained similar to how it had been. Voting was not allowed. Texas didn't even tell the slaves they were free till forced to by Federal troops two and a half years later!
Physical intimidation has been constant, psychological brutality has been the norm. White expectations about what black people were supposed to be and to do continued to be maelstroms of ignorance and hatred. The civil rights movement came into being to redress wrongs, and was fought by many. Still today, many define themselves by their loyalty to the confederate cause. And racism still exists today in many forms. I'm not explaining that very well, will re-write after viewing again and/or reading this. I just have a kind of horrified sense that not nearly enough has changed.
So, long story short (or is it too late for that?) I'm really interested in reading the book now, to gather more such data and continue my own personal development toward being a white person who's *not* part of the problem, accordingly.(less)
I bought and skimmed/read this book during the Olympic boycott conversation, and one thing I found interesting is that the term 'Human Rights' is not...moreI bought and skimmed/read this book during the Olympic boycott conversation, and one thing I found interesting is that the term 'Human Rights' is not in the index. Which would indicate it's not a concept that the author included in this book. Skimming on my own, I did find it mentioned - but only as a transparent strategy that certain entities use to try and stem US job loss - nothing more. Which was interesting at that point in time (and now).
In general, I found it the way others have - superficial, simplistic, stereotypical.. but also with some nuggets of truth. I also felt that one true thing was that the amount of US debt that China holds is big and meaningful. I felt that the author's easy dismissal of India's rise to prominence was facile and insufficiently supported.
Overall, another interesting snippet to include within a set of books on these subjects - relying on this one alone would be a mistake.(less)