ChickenBones: A Journal

for  Literary & Artistic African-American  Themes



We stop and we kill and say profiling is needed, / However, some say lessons of ’93 were not heeded

Did we learn from Castro, the Shah of Iran and such? / Must we make our brothers hate us so much?




911 (Are We Flying the Same Flag Now?)

By James Goodwyn

We say terrorism, bin laden is evil, but is that enough said.

There is terror within the “walls of liberty,” not dead.

Some say the fault lies with security or a president that fell.

Some say no — it lived here under a flag of odiferous smell.


We say war is the answer to evil our world shook

However, at the planning we in bedroom windows looked

The nation in mourning and in sorrow will be without end


Some say this land was appreciated with fish and game aplenty

Those then had spirit, ideals, simple life and there was want, not any

They welcomed the creator with praise through song and dance.

A people reduced without that land, that spirit that game is now chance


The country is laboring and awaiting its greatness, still

For some saw on 911 the hour’s lateness, still

The reason they died will become futile at best

If world leaders will not give muscle flexing a rest


We have blessings from men of the cloth

As we flaunt treasures not fit for the moth

As we crusade to show America’s not bent

Why not use that energy to strength and comfort the rent?


Welcome some, but others we do not.

God, his message, have we forgot.

In fear we fly, who can blame us.

In anger, we revisit shadows that shame us

As eminent men of eloquent tongue espouses

We run to Rushmore with inanimate houses.


We shoot to the stars to protect our doors.

Without regard for those weakened shores.

We put at risk our loved ones so sweet

As brave workers search beneath their feet

They search without rest, fear or reward

Will 911 be just another day of record?


We stop and we kill and say profiling is needed,

However, some say lessons of ’93 were not heeded

Did we learn from Castro, the Shah of Iran and such?

Must we make our brothers hate us so much?


As troops gather to exact payment of countrymen

We kill a president, dreamer, prophet and then . . . .

It’s off again to conquer unspeakable the foe,

However, at the return who in time will know?

A well intentioned people decided to Grieve mother earth

What in heaven’s name, can more sorrow be worth?


Are we indeed flying the same flag, now?

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Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America

By Melissa V. Harris-Perry

According to the author, this society has historically exerted considerable pressure on black females to fit into one of a handful of stereotypes, primarily, the Mammy, the Matriarch or the Jezebel.  The selfless Mammy’s behavior is marked by a slavish devotion to white folks’ domestic concerns, often at the expense of those of her own family’s needs. By contrast, the relatively-hedonistic Jezebel is a sexually-insatiable temptress. And the Matriarch is generally thought of as an emasculating figure who denigrates black men, ala the characters Sapphire and Aunt Esther on the television shows Amos and Andy and Sanford and Son, respectively.     

Professor Perry points out how the propagation of these harmful myths have served the mainstream culture well. For instance, the Mammy suggests that it is almost second nature for black females to feel a maternal instinct towards Caucasian babies.

As for the source of the Jezebel, black women had no control over their own bodies during slavery given that they were being auctioned off and bred to maximize profits. Nonetheless, it was in the interest of plantation owners to propagate the lie that sisters were sluts inclined to mate indiscriminately.

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Sex at the Margins

Migration, Labour Markets and the Rescue Industry

By Laura María Agustín

This book explodes several myths: that selling sex is completely different from any other kind of work, that migrants who sell sex are passive victims and that the multitude of people out to save them are without self-interest. Laura Agustín makes a passionate case against these stereotypes, arguing that the label ‘trafficked’ does not accurately describe migrants’ lives and that the ‘rescue industry’ serves to disempower them. Based on extensive research amongst both migrants who sell sex and social helpers, Sex at the Margins provides a radically different analysis. Frequently, says Agustin, migrants make rational choices to travel and work in the sex industry, and although they are treated like a marginalised group they form part of the dynamic global economy. Both powerful and controversial, this book is essential reading for all those who want to understand the increasingly important relationship between sex markets, migration and the desire for social justice. “Sex at the Margins rips apart distinctions between migrants, service work and sexual labour and reveals the utter complexity of the contemporary sex industry. This book is set to be a trailblazer in the study of sexuality.”—Lisa Adkins, University of London

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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Negro Digest / Black World

Browse all issues

1950        1960        1965        1970        1975        1980        1985        1990        1995        2000 ____ 2005        


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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery /

George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 — The Founding of Haiti 

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update 13 October 2011




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