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Thursday, March 10, 2016

Cornel West Speaks about Race, Social Justice, and Art

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Here, Master teacher and speaker Cornel West lectures at the University of Hartford on February 10, 2016. He speaks on social justice issues, race relations, and the importance that artists play in giving insight and creating change.

"Indifference to evil is more evil than evil itself."
-- Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel

"Nobody loves me but my mama, and she might be jivin' too."
-- B.B. King



4 comments:

Joe said...

I think this was a very good lecture. Unfortunately, for me the sound quality was uneven and made his remarks a bit difficult to understand. I tried using the closed captioning, but that was messed up. He said Steve Jobs lacked empathy, but the closed captioning said something about "Steve Jobs embassy."

As a white person, I found many of the references eluded me. When he talked about Nina Simone (Mississippi Goddamn) and Billie Holiday, of course I understood what he was talking about, but many of the other people he mentioned I just did not recognize. He quoted Saint Augustine's saying about people being born "between urine and feces," and I was favorably impressed by the breadth of his scholarship.

He spoke with great intelligence and passion. But he also spoke quite rapidly. I think it would be great if someone could put together a transcript of his remarks. I could then read and absorb his thoughts at my own pace.

BTW, he was interviewed by Playboy some months ago, and that interview was superb.

(I also watched the YouTube segment where he rips into Hillary Clinton, comparing her to Milli Vanilli. A ferocious attack and a brilliant metaphor.)

Joe said...

The Playboy interview was from 2012. The full text can be found here:

http://www.davidhochman.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/AUG-INT-Cornel-West.pdf15.pdf

Note: There is one cartoon reproduced involving some nudity, so sensitive persons might choose to avoid this for that reason.

Alicia Benjamin said...

Joe,

The audio worked fine for me. Maybe it was your device or ear plugs. Yes, Cornel West is very insightful and has a lot of meaningful things to say about social justice and race relations issues. I can't listen to him enough. I always learn something.

Thank you for the Playboy interview link. I'll check out the Cornel West interview asap.

Thanks for commenting!
Alicia

Alicia Benjamin said...

Joe,

I read the article. It was good, but I had to keep reminding myself it was from 2012. I love the way the writer referred to West as an academic gospel-infused performance artist. That's exactly what he is! And I know my performance art.

Thanks again,
Alicia