Thursday, August 28, 2008

Of Historical Proportions

No matter how you slice it, it's just plain Historical; that a black man is accepting the nomination of a major politcal party to possibly become the president of the United States of America. I have to admit, I didn't think he'd get this far. Now, I believe that it just might happen. But, I just wonder though: remember how your grandmother or auntie used to have the photographs of Martin, John and Jesus hanging on the wall like members of the family? Will a new generation add Obama's portrait?

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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Counting Down to Graduation

I'm really excited today,first: because today I begin my last full-time semester as an undergraduate student. I won't graduate until May, but I'll only be part-time starting in January. I'm also excited because I deliberately saved African American literature and studies for my last year, in order to spend this time reading and writing about the work that I was raised on and inspired by. With the exception of a World Music class, (which I'm taking to satisfy a humanties requirement), I'm taking a second semester of African American literature from 1919-the present, an African American studies class on the Harlem Renaissance, and I will be doing my thesis which is a close reading of the narrative, From the Darkness Cometh the Light or Struggles for Freedom by Lucy Ann Delaney.
I am especially geeked about the Harlem Renaissance class, not only because we will look at the films Lady Sings the Blues and The Great Debaters, but the text for the class will be engaging and I can't wait to get into that whole "art as propaganda" discussion brought forth by W.E.B. DuBois, and The Negro and the Racial Mountain by Langston Hughes. In addition to the Norton Anthology of African American Literature edited by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (and the late Nellie McKay), I'll be reading The Cambridge Companion to the Harlem Renaissance edited by George Hutchinson, and Voices From the Harlem Renaissance by veteran, Nathan Irvin Huggins. We'll also be reading Ernest J. Gaines' A Lesson Before Dying, Their Eyes Were Watching God, and August Wilson's The Piano Lesson. If that isn't enough, we'll also be seeing productions of Wilson's Gem of the Ocean and Radio Golf.
Is this school, or literary Heaven?

[Last photo is a scene from Wilson's Gem of the Ocean.]

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Life After the GRE

So I'm trying to look on the bright side after failing miserably on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). This is the standardized test one has to take if one desires to attend graduate school. And while my hopes of getting into graduate school have been doused only momentarily (uh, I will be taking it know, if at first you don't succeed, yadda, yadda, yadda), it has got me to thinking about what in the world will I do with myself come August 2009. For starters, I can try and get used to the idea of working an eight or nine hour day again. Lord knows that'll be the hardest part. I could also work on a more consistant workout schedule; loose a few extra pounds. And hey! I'll also have more time to start reading all the books that I never have time to read because of class assignments. Most of all, I'll be able to focus more on my own writing again. I wrote the most during those times when that was all I had, and now that I have a little more of a foundation I believe I can create a stronger process for myself; become more disciplined. Yes, that's it! I'll turn lemons into mojitos! Okay, so I'll use limes, but it'll work for what I could use right now.

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Sunday, August 10, 2008

Black Moses

Isaac Hayes, 1942-2008

Saturday, August 09, 2008

King of Comedy

Bernard Jeffery McCullough
"Bernie Mac" 1957-2008


Friday, August 01, 2008

Musician, Author...James McBride

Heard a great interview this evening on the PBS show Between The Lines,the "weekly author interview program" hosted by the wife of the late Maynard Jackson, former mayor of Atlanta. I've listened to the show many times, and learned about some great new authors as a result. Today I learned about James McBride, author of Color of Water, Miracle at St. Anna(the film produced by Spike Lee soon to be released)and Song Yet Sung (Riverhead Penguin). Take time to listen to the podcast where he talks about the characters in his new novel. Sounds like a must read; it'll definately be on my list. And check out his website also, really cool. In addition to being an author, McBride is also a musician and has written songs for Grover Washington and Anita Baker, among others. Click here to see the trailer for the movie Miracle at St. Anna, due to be released September 22.

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