Saturday, 30 August 2014

Frank Viola on Race Problem and Ferguson

I was privileged to read Frank Viola’s take on the Ferguson’s issue. Refreshing and honest. I think, all in all, the verse below sums it all up:

“Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all. Colossians 3:11”

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Saturday, 23 August 2014

Teju Cole on James Baldwin’s Stranger In The Village

English: James Baldwin, Distinguished Visiting...

English: James Baldwin, Distinguished Visiting Professor at Miami Dade College (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“The rage of the disesteemed is personally fruitless…but it is also absolutely inevitable.”

The above quote is James Baldwin’s and part of the sentences in the last paragraph written by Teju Cole in The New Yorker this week. He noted that:

“There are glances all over Europe and in India, and anywhere I go outside Africa. The test is how long the glances last, whether they become stares, with what intent they occur, whether they contain any degree of hostility or mockery, and to what extent connections, money, or mode of dress shield me in these situations. To be a stranger is to be looked at, but to be black is to be looked at especially.”

Teju also wrote about the inner turmoil older generation of blacks faced when it came to the appreciation of art as it relates to their own culture and inner leanings. He perceived that the present generation isn’t shackled by that; he wrote:

There’s no world in which I would surrender the intimidating beauty of Yoruba-language poetry for, say, Shakespeare’s sonnets, nor one in which I’d prefer the chamber orchestras of Brandenburg to the koras of Mali. I’m happy to own all of it. This carefree confidence is, in part, the gift of time. It is a dividend of the struggle of people from earlier generations.

The essay is one of the best I have read this year. It is subtle, sharp, and clear as it captures the inner turmoil of identification, belonging, and the indignity racism brings upon us all, regardless of colour.


Every Day is for the Thief: Teju Cole: Books

ISBN: 0571307922
ISBN-13: 9780571307920

Saturday, 16 August 2014

What I’m Reading – A Time to Kill by John Grisham

An old classic. Still impresses me a lot with savvy character development, lively descriptions, and plots that hold you by the throat. Superb work.

The book was released in 1989 but the issues it describes still  exists today. Sad. Recent real life events (shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri) makes you wonder how some things haven’t really changed.




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