class notes english Freedom Movements

movements, notes. capitalism

class notes. jan 31. freedom movements

fr nights, Golden town

visual imagery
thrown out of the window
“John” speaking Afrikaans
english had subtitles (also aimed at non-english speaking native audience)
1976 Soweto’s school students boycott Afrikaans language

Afrikaans develops not to be understood by masters? but why don’t they speak it then?

violence / peaceful resolution

1. lower middle class
2. tails cat the N

Manning Marable: Race is the modality through which class is expressed.

Nothing but a man – filmmakers are white
violence: Tactially to attract (white) sympathy

every slave had to be zambo =//= need to be tamed?
Lily: nothing but a man “north” as a safe place
Pathe: Film noir detective, anti hero (Rosenberg?)
Social history -> women making “stuff” possible
movement history

(leola Johnson) extradiotigenic personality
on Abby Lincoln 1963

Jesse Goldman on Black Marxism, Cedric Robinson
-Theoretical background: racism & capitalism -> formation of europe
racism predates capitalism -> influences
immigratory movements in Africa care about work places of works
going to another place slavs as natural slaves
capitalism comes from a social order (racism)
capitalis is a process of “heteroginization”

Zach Cheema on Harold Wolpe
(P: racial and labor control in tension)
white domination
1. capitalist -less pay >>>> anti-capitalis (less efficiency)
2. af-am / blacks in SA
af-am considered inferior
sa considered equals
Wolpe is fixating in making Apartheid separate from segregation
strategies to create breaches among black/white workers

Jonathan Fredor
Cooper. black ideology
songs of Zion Tiembo
(P: Cooper doesn’t like Frederickson)
doesn’t walk much about U.S.
criticizes on mechanical comparison, too much white perspective (no black agency)
interested in how religions and ideology works

Shula Marks
-highest agers of white supremacy, John S.
marks is SA historian
doesn’t like comparative historical method
generalizing is bad
not enough info
George Frederickson had historical inaccuracies

Peter: comparative history is only done through a U.S. lens, and when you look at Safundi for example, more broad comparisons (brasil, etc) is done

I brought up racism and racialism from Anthony Appiah, and said Robinson is opposed to Frederickson.

group discussion
(what makes a slave) christians are enslaved too, white slaves
rights in he americas
colored in SA, frederickson p.133

Alessandra Williams on Manning Marable
phenotype condition
black migration
common worldview was destroyed
white working class gave up
George Lukacs -> racism
whitenes -> took hold off of whiteness
(P: prof of Af-Am in Columbia)

Leonard Thompson -> good overview

  • segregation of homelands

-blacks created their own economic world, niches
-ANC formation

Marable & Homeland LEadership

Lily on Phil Bonner
Apartheid’s genesis in the 20th C
processes of social history
(district 6 was bulldozed after 1946)

peter: per books, demographic (b/w in sa/am)

A. Randolph: WWII as a war on racism, going to DC asking for equal jobs
no jobs! poor jobs

SA there are jobs, no political power
structures & mandela/king

english Freedom Movements reading note

white supremacy, racism, racialism

in “White Supremacy: a comparative sutyd in american and south african history”, frederickson makes the distinction between white supremacy and racism.

first, racism is too ambiguous. second, racism is an essentialistic mode of thought that gives racial attributes to given populations. (frederickson characterizes them as “the fact that populations groups that can be distinguished by ancestr are likely to differn in culture, status, and power” (p.xii)

racists, then, make the claim that those are natural and bypass historical ciscumstances. white supremacists claim tha these differences favor whites.

frederickson introduces white supremacy as an alternative, attitudinal term to racism, while leaving racism to the realm of the epistemic.

the first reason is that in everyday discourse no one admits to being a racist anymore, because it has been conflated with a multitude of overlapping, and differing, meanings. it has been a blind spot for criticism. many administrators in south africa still admit to being white supremacists, however. alabama had a state motto praising the virtues of white supremacy.

second reason is that scholars can deal more purely with the study of white supremacists practices, without getting stuck at accusing and pointing out the moral wrongs of racism.

(so both reasons given by frederickson are of a methodological nature, not by some theoretical reason, such as the one given by appiah.)

kwame anthony appiah claims in “in my father’s house” that racialism is the mode of thought where racial differences exist. then racism, is the judgement involving the placement of blacks and other colored peoples in an inferior relationship to the white race. he argues this in ch.1, “the invention of africa”, p.13, while trying to make a case for Crummell. i think he also mentions DuBois as an example of racialist thought.

so frederickson seems to be borrowing on appiah’s theoretical framework of the epistemic aspect and activist (?) aspect of racism. but they differ in terminology

appiah -> concept -> frederickson -> public discourse
racialism -> epistemic division of races by attributes -> racism -> racism
racism -> black and other races are inferior -> white supremacy -> racism

now, rachleff briefly presented the idea of racial prejudice and racial discrimination as sub-branches of appiah’s “racism”, i don’t where he brought it from (his own?).
appiah -> rachleff -> notion -> frederickson -> public discourse
racism -> racial prejudice -> to claim some form of hierarchical racial order -> (no term) -> racism (reverse discrimination if the agent is not white)
racism -> racial discrimination -> to execute out racial prejudice, e.g. school segregation -> white supremacy -> racism (terrorist, if agent is not white)

now maybe racial discrimination and the rest of the concepts needs to be separated, because racial discrimination is a form of praxis, while the others are forms of cognition?

back to the book..

english Freedom Movements

a decommodification agenda by capturing state power?

so after reading Patrick Bond’s Strategies for Social Justice Movements from Southern Africa to the United States

Bond is thinking about circular state measures that eventually weaken local communities, and talks about fundamental change that doesn’t rely on state power, when he writes:

…South Africa’s independent left fully understands the need to transcend national-scale capitalism. One step along the way is the strategy of decommodification.

The South African decommodification agenda is based on interlocking, overlapping campaigns to turn basic needs into genuine human rights including: free anti-retroviral medicines to fight AIDS, at least 50 liters of free water and 1 kilowatt hour of free electricity for each individual every day, extensive land reform(…..)

so I think, if Rachleff is sending out something, there’s gotta be something new in there. The “measures”, as I reade them, of decommodifying services into basic human rights seems to require state intervention, and as he describes local movements in environmental justice, I thought he would provide some sort of theoretical framework to understand these processes. But then., the conclusion comes back with a reliance on state-administered reform:

The latter [change that advances a nonreformist agenda] would include, for example, social policies stressing more generous and universal state services, controls on capital flows and imports/exports, and inward- oriented industrialization strategies allowing democratic control of finance and production in order to meet social needs.
We must capture state power through elections in which a democratic political party amasses community/worker/peasant support by generalizing the sorts of struggles discussed above, eventually contending with those elites who remain locked into neocolonial power relationships.

so I have never taken a polisci course, and so I have always trouble figuring out the influences of macrogroups, hierarchies, and unequal relationships. In other words, when dealing with historic processes, I always started with the little practices and observable phenomenom. am I missing something in Bond’s analysis of how to materialize a “nonreformist agenda”? at least when put into words, doesn’t it look like another developmental rhetoric?


also: what was this NEPAD business? Because the new president of Kenya about a year ago had made some strong statements about NEPAD that made the party of the outgoing president rave. It’s been a while since the news went out, thoguh

class notes english Freedom Movements

Class Notes. movements. Introduction

class notes, Freedom Movements
January 24, 2005

-SNVC (?)

  • we are reading M.L.King and N.Mandela, not because they are everything that their respective movements represented, but in order to get an initial idea of what the main body of texts “representative” in public discourse of the movements is about. That way it is possible to at least talk about some”thing” when directing criticism.
  • David Garrow legal research historian.
  • Anthony Marx. political scientist trained in Amherst
  • Clay Carson. SNIC. Curator of MLK in Struggle

Krog TRC

Frederickson: watch for structures & ideologies

Screening of Mapantsula
What makes black film?

  • Spike Lee argues the screenwriter, director, actors, need to be black, etc, etc
  • Mapantsula differs

Added today: I still don’t get the difference.
-bg: 1985 state of emergency in SA. the figure of totsi (another word for mapantsula, or the young gangster)

  • rapid urbanization after ww2. large scale forced migration of a male workforce. black worker towns. prime example: Soweto.

-hustler, mapantsula outside the cities or the SA version of “ghettoes”
-regarding the social formation of totsis: greater exposure to american-led mass culture -> the big trend of the times was the detectivesque film noir -> young people identify with it to express their anger
-what goes on today is a different matter, where young people of color have started killing other people of color. some social scientists trace the roots back to the 1950’s totsis, whereas the two phenomena deserve differential treatment.
-theoretical framework: infrapolitics. (Will Seidt, Weapons of the Weak – studies resistance in the Phillippines)

  • McDonalds, gangster realities of the 90’s: TUPAC, Dona Carey New York [I don’t get this reference] – role in american icons.
  • makers of mapantsula told distributors that they were maknig “just another gangsta movie”. when the movie was released, it was banned in south africa.

Mapantsula notes
knowledge -> black body

on the syllabus
“do the right thing” <- smiley character? malcolm & king not as opposites. instead nothing but a man. Mapantsula was filmed in 1988