Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Dr. Hare on the Psycholinguistic Crisis of the North American African

There's nothing wrong with Afro-American;. Malcolm used it. --Amiri Baraka

I never minded Afro-American (noted it was promising to come into vogue in an article, “Rebels Without a Name” (Phylon, 1962, forget which quarter, Autumn, I believe), but I like “black.”  I didn’t mind “Negro” and openly hesitated to start calling Negro colleges black universities until they changed their colors, but the wish to call them “black” rushed right over me.  

 “Black” doesn’t put any other qualifications up if it doesn’t necessarily mean psychologically as well as physically black. Meanwhile, somebody complained about being hyphenated as “Afro-Americans,” and we somehow can’t seem to get to “African” like the Asians get to Asian without any initial worry about where they came from, or whether they are here or there. “Afro-American” was also belittled by the “afro” hairdo.  

I wish we would settle on something and stick with it. If you want to say whose Africans they are I would suggest “American African,” which needs no hyphenation like African-Americans or Afro-Americans.  

Amiri, let me suggest that Malcolm was not the source of all knowledge, especially since 1965. Beyond the personality, a lot of quips, and the organizational pump, he didn’t have anything on you. He broke it down and took it to the max. He was the speaker and you the writer, both of you unsurpassed as thinkers, each in his way, just not perfect. Who was or is? Sometimes I wonder if God is always awake, 

Marvin, enlighten, endarken me, but I don’t want to start nothing. Speaking of which that internet black scholar journal was probably a good idea on reflection.  NH

1 comment:

  1. As a white woman in love with a black man I am experiencing a need to open a dialogue with black people about all aspects of interracial relations, going back to slavery and continuing through COINTELPRO activities and on down to current cases like Trayvon Martin's. Would this be a good place for that?