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Reading, Looking, Listening, . . . Questioning
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Kalamazoo, Michigan, by race

What happened after Ta-Nehisi Coates visited our city? By Sue Ellen Christian   Everything and nothing, as you would expect. But also, for me, old ideas from the American psychologist Gordon Allport and the journalist Robert Maynard got a new hold on my imagination. The auditorium was packed with 2,500 people and could have held […]

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Categories: Drew Whitcup, ZiR | Add a Comment

This week, I am continuing to read Ta-Nehisi Coates’ in-depth analysis of mass incarceration in the United States. In the remaining two parts of the piece, Coates revisits the legacy of Daniel Patrick Moynihan and his now-famous report: Moynihan is in the midst of a renaissance. Fifty years after the publication of ‘The Negro Family: The […]

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Categories: Drew Whitcup, ZiR | Add a Comment

 This week, I am continuing to read Ta-Nehisi Coates’ in-depth analysis of mass incarceration in the United States. In part V of the piece, Coates studies the policies that led to increased incarceration rates, and the rhetoric behind them: When Nixon proclaimed drugs ‘public enemy No. 1,’ or declared ‘war against the criminal elements which […]

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Categories: Drew Whitcup, ZiR | Add a Comment

 This week, I am continuing to read Ta-Nehisi Coates’ in-depth analysis of mass incarceration in the United States. Having provided some of the historical-political background in the early chapters of his essay, Coates goes on in part III to tell the stories of real people contending with the vastly expanding net of incarceration. Time spent […]

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Categories: Drew Whitcup, ZiR | 1 Comment

As a number of my past posts indicate, when Ta-Nehisi Coates writes something, I read it. This is especially true when he publishes his brand of long-form, in-depth, history-in-context pieces, like he did last summer in his case for American reparations. This month, he’s published another missive in The Atlantic—one which frames the modern African American experience […]

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Categories: Drew Whitcup, ZiR | Add a Comment

Weeks ago, I read Ta-Nehisi Coates’ missive on the need for reparations for the African-American community. In that piece, Coates tackled the seamless history of oppression that black Americans have faced since slavery was abolished. On Monday, Coates wrote another piece for The Atlantic; this one is narrower in scope, but no less scathing in […]

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Categories: Drew Whitcup, ZiR | Add a Comment

For Parts I and II of X, please click here. For Parts III, IV, and V, click here. For Parts VI, VII, and VIII, click here. The writing in the first eight chapters of Ta-Nehisi Coates’ argument in favor of reparations does not necessarily lack passion. Interspersed among the the well-researched historical facts and anecdotes is some heartfelt […]

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Categories: Drew Whitcup, ZiR | Add a Comment

For Parts I and II of X, please click here. For Parts III, IV, and V, click here. As I continue to read  Ta-Nehisi Coates’ case for reparations in The Atlantic, I am struck not just by the content, but also by the ease with which Coates shifts from the personal to the local to the national, and back to […]

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Categories: Drew Whitcup, ZiR | 2 Comments

Click Here for PDF For Parts I and II of X, please click here. Last week, I highlighted the first two chapters of Ta-Nehisi Coates’ extensive piece in The Atlantic, in which he presents his case for reparations. In the chapters that follow, Coates blends more history and statistics in support of his premise. On claims for […]

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Categories: Drew Whitcup, ZiR | 3 Comments

Click Here for PDF Last month, The Atlantic published journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates’ lengthy argument in favor of reparations for African-Americans. It is an impassioned plea, to be sure, yet notably measured and meticulously researched. Coates begins his case with a history lesson, and a reference point in the form of a man named Clyde Ross: Clyde […]

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Categories: Essay | 3 Comments
Frank Kermode, August 2000, photo by Charlie MacDonald

Click Here for PDF Last month, The Atlantic published journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates’ lengthy argument in favor of reparations for African-Americans. It is an impassioned plea, to be sure, yet notably measured and meticulously researched. Coates begins his case with a history lesson, and a reference point in the form of a man named Clyde Ross: Clyde […]

Essay

June 14, 2018

The time that takes place in stories compared to the time that we actually live is radically abbreviated. It briskly sweeps aside all the commonplace moments that make up the long stretch of toilsome time and focuses instead on the interesting and compelling. With a mere section break or a simple transitional phrase, days, months, and whole years are disposed of as if they had no significance at all. “Then time passed slowly until the day arrived when….” A lot of important living is hidden in such a phrase. From the moment-to-moment flow of time, the storyteller lifts out only those narr...

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Categories: Essay | 3 Comments
Frank Kermode, August 2000, photo by Charlie MacDonald

Click Here for PDF Last month, The Atlantic published journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates’ lengthy argument in favor of reparations for African-Americans. It is an impassioned plea, to be sure, yet notably measured and meticulously researched. Coates begins his case with a history lesson, and a reference point in the form of a man named Clyde Ross: Clyde […]

Essay

May 11, 2018

Using personal essay, literary reference, and journalistic voice, the article plants itself on our existential doorstep while illuminating Barnes' novel one more time. Very strong. Thanks.

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Categories: Essay | 3 Comments
Frank Kermode, August 2000, photo by Charlie MacDonald

Click Here for PDF Last month, The Atlantic published journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates’ lengthy argument in favor of reparations for African-Americans. It is an impassioned plea, to be sure, yet notably measured and meticulously researched. Coates begins his case with a history lesson, and a reference point in the form of a man named Clyde Ross: Clyde […]

Essay

May 10, 2018

"When these new memories suddenly came upon me … time had been placed in reverse. As if, for that moment, the river ran upstream." Stolen from Barnes's book for my poem "From the Vale for a Soul Making". Great book to write about.

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