Quotations From ISHMAEL REED
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Currently, U.S. society has been encouraged by its political and subsidized mass-media intelligentsia to view U.S. life as a continual "morning in America" paradise, where the only social problems occur in the inner cities. Psychologists call this denial.Ishmael Reed (b. 1938), U.S. novelist, poet, essayist. repr. In Airing Dirty Laundry, Addison-Wesley (1993). "Jess Mowry," Nation (September 21, 1992).
American cultural institutions seem so bent on preserving the values of "Western civilization," the mythical "Whitetown," that we learn about one another's cultures the same way we learn about sex: in the streets.Ishmael Reed (b. 1938), U.S. novelist, poet, essayist. repr. In Writin'Is Fightin,'Atheneum (1988). "Hymietown Revisited," California Magazine (October 1984).
I used to be a discipline problem, which caused me embarrassment until I realized that being a discipline problem in a racist society is sometimes an honor.Ishmael Reed (b. 1938), U.S. novelist, poet, essayist. Shrovetide in Old New Orleans, Introduction, Doubleday (1978).
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The treatment of African and African American culture in our education was no different from their treatment in Tarzan movies.Ishmael Reed (b. 1938), U.S. novelist, poet, essayist. repr. In Airing Dirty Laundry, Addison-Wesley (1993). "Reading, Writing, and Racism," Image (19 August 1990).
For Afro-Americans, it could be argued that every year they've spent in this country since they arrived in chains to perform forced labor has been 1984.Ishmael Reed (b. 1938), U.S. novelist, poet, essayist. Originally delivered as a lecture as part of The George Orwell Series, Marin College, February 1984. Writin' Is Fightin', "300 Years of 1984," Atheneum (1988).
A black boxer's career is the perfect metaphor for the career of a black male. Every day is like being in the gym, sparring with impersonal opponents as one faces the rudeness and hostility that a black male must confront in the United States, where he is the object of both fear and fascination.Ishmael Reed (b. 1938), U.S. novelist, poet, essayist. Writin' Is Fightin', "Boxing on Paper: Thirty-Seven Years Later," Atheneum (1988).
The Afrocentric exploration of the black past only scratches the surface. A full examination of the ancestry of those who are referred to in the newspapers as blacks and African Americans must include Europe and Native America.Ishmael Reed (b. 1938), U.S. novelist, poet, essayist. Airing Dirty Laundry, "Distant Cousins," Addison-Wesley (1993).
Writing poetry is the hard manual labor of the imagination.Ishmael Reed (b. 1938), U.S. novelist, poet, essayist. Airing Dirty Laundry, "Gwendolyn Brooks: Poet," Addison-Wesley (1993).
Free enterprise is not a bad idea and has produced art.Ishmael Reed (b. 1938), U.S. novelist, poet, essayist. repr. In Shrovetide in Old New Orleans, "Image and Money" Doubleday (1978). "Blacks Must Put 'Filthy' Money to Work," Los Angeles Times, Dec. 26, 1974.
The descendants of Holy Roman Empire monarchies became feeble-minded in the twentieth century, and after World War I had been done in by the democracies; some were kept on to entertain the tourists, like the one they have in England.Ishmael Reed (b. 1938), U.S. novelist, poet, essayist. repr. In Airing Dirty Laundry, Addison-Wesley (1993). "American Poetry: Is There a Center?" Black American Literature Forum (January 1978).
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