Posts Tagged: slavery

The Thread: Ways of Being Seen

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Can you see it now? Is the image different in your mind yet? A thing you can’t unsee. ...more

Not Your Auntie

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What I need is for white people to stop calling the Honorable Representative Maxine Waters “Auntie.” For real. It needs to stop. ...more

VISIBLE: Women Writers of Color: Brooke C. Obie

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Brooke C. Obie discusses the historical basis for her debut novel, Book of Addis, writing to dismantle white supremacy, and why Black speculative fiction is integral to her survival. ...more

Nothing Foreign about It: Talking with Omar El Akkad

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Omar El Akkad discusses his debut novel American War, suicide terrorism, fossil fuels, and blankets. ...more

Magical Systems and Fusion Reactors: Rivers Solomon Discusses An Unkindness of Ghosts

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Rivers Solomon discusses her debut novel, the importance of writing the body into a story, and more. ...more

The Lens Magnifies, the Mirror Reflects: What Photos from the Race War Show Us about Ourselves

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[Still photos] grab what otherwise might feel too foreign to understand. ...more

The Human Cost: Discussing Political Storytelling with Olivia Kate Cerrone

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Olivia Kate Cerrone discusses her novella The Hunger Saint and the significance of historical fiction. ...more

Your Patriotism Isn’t Love, It’s Blindness

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Love of country, some argue. With their boots firmly planted in my chest as I struggle to protest. No, that is not love, but blindness. ...more

There Is Simply No Time for This: Whose Streets? and Civil Rights Cinema

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It is unlikely I will see the US justice system evolve toward an egalitarian ideal in my lifetime. But Whose Streets? does offer a clearly visible North Star. ...more

David Biespiel’s Poetry Wire: 21 Poems That Shaped America (Pt. 15): “Southern History”

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We can’t hide from our history and we can’t pass it on to future generations. ...more

On Grief and Inheritance: A Conversation with Brionne Janae

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The poet Brionne Janae discusses her debut poetry collection After Jubilee, intergenerational trauma, and writing her way into historical personae. ...more

All Writing Is Political: A Conversation with Mohsin Hamid

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Mohsin Hamid discusses his new novel, Exit West, hope in fiction as a form of resistance, the necessity of learning to accept social change, and how much America and Pakistan have come to resemble each other. ...more

The Rumpus Mini-Interview Project #81: Chanelle Benz

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Chanelle Benz’s debut collection, The Man Who Shot Out My Eye Is Dead, is filled with characters often facing a moral crossroads. The stories contain the unexpected, like a classic Western complete with local brothel as well as a gothic tale.

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The Rumpus Saturday Essay: The Savage Mind, Pt. 3

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To deny violence is to do it. Our surprise at Sandy Hook and Cold Springs and Columbine is a form of violence in its own right. ...more

Interrogating the English Language with Safiya Sinclair

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To be forced to speak in the language of the colonist, the language of the oppressor, while also carrying within us the storm of Jamaican patois, we live under a constant hurricane of our doubleness. ...more

The Rumpus Book Club Chat with Damian Duffy and John Jennings

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Damian Duffy and John Jennings discuss their new graphic novel adaptation of Octavia Butler's classic novel Kindred. ...more

Touring Trump’s America on Colson Whitehead’s Underground Railroad

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Colson Whitehead’s The Underground Railroad won the National Book Award on Wednesday night. In his acceptance speech he told us, “We’re happy in here; outside is the blasted hellhole wasteland of Trumpland. Be kind to everybody. Make art and fight the power.”

Not only was this apt for the evening, but it also describes the landscape of his novel, which presents us with several different Americas, including the diverse, literary America he was referring to.

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The Rumpus Review of Nate Parker’s The Birth of a Nation

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Parker set out to bring a different kind of “slavery movie” to audiences. And it is different. ...more

The Rumpus Interview with Russell Banks

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Russell Banks discusses his new book, Voyager: Travel Writings, why we are never free from our history, and how writing saved his life. ...more

Riding the Underground

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The Underground Railroad has always fascinated Americans, and recently it has exploded in popularity, with books, TV shows, and even representation on United States currency. But does the mythologized version of the Underground Railroad live up to actual history? In a recent New Yorker article, Kathryn Schulz examines recent media incarnations of the Railroad:

But, as more recent work has made clear, they should also incite our curiosity and skepticism: about how the Underground Railroad really worked, why stories about it so consistently work on us, and what they teach us—or spare us from learning—about ourselves and our nation.

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History as Structure

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In a Q & A with debut novelist Yaa Gyasi on the ZYZZYVA blog, Ismail Muhammad asks Gyasi to expound on narrative structure and the far-reaching effects of the international slave trade:

I realized that I was interested in tracking how slavery, colonialism, and institutionalized racism work over a very long period of time—not just the beginning and end, but the movement from the beginning to the end.

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The Rumpus Interview with Yaa Gyasi

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Yaa Gyasi discusses her debut novel Homegoing, growing up in Alabama, the multiplicity of black experiences, the legacy of slavery, and her writing process. ...more

The Rumpus Interview with Ben H. Winters

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Ben H. Winters discusses his new novel Underground Airlines about an America where the Civil War never took place, writing speculative fiction, and modern racism. ...more