Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Academic and Spiritual Sojourn

To those that view this blog periodically and even decide to make comments, I thank you (whether you agree with my views or not). For the past semester I have been working on my comprehensive or "ascension to candidacy" exams, just another one of the many hoops that those seeking the doctoral degree must jump through as we run the intellectual gauntlet. As I have been working...reading and writing...finding ways to familiarize and summarize the scholarship of my chosen field of study, I have been troubled, intellectually, spiritually, and even physically at times.

This process is surely not for the weak of mind, spirit, or body. And for those that have and continue to offer encouragement I thank you and appreciate your efforts. I tried to think of a way to contextualize what I feel from time to time from DuBois' thoughts in Souls of Blackfolk of being a "problem" to Douglass' plea to Americans to "live up to their constitution." I face the hypocrisy of American history with the transcendent faith that sustained those who sacrificed that I might be able to enjoy the rights and privileges I have.

Moreover, I hope that as I traverse my current stormy swell, I can find ways to not exist in the Ivy Tower of lofty idealism and speak truth to power that creates sustainable ways for the liberation of our minds and spirits. Lastly, I think that I now understand what Prof. John Henrik Clarke meant by proclaiming that:

"History is a clock that people use to tell the political and cultural time of day...it is also a compass that people use to find themselves on the map of human geography. History tells a people where they have been and what they have been...where they are and what they are. Most important, history tells a people where they still must go, what they still must be. The relationship of history to the people is the same as the relationship of a mother to her child."

With that said, I will be taking a brief hiatus from my blog to fully concentrate on my work. I leave you with one of the most moving clips in cinematic history...that I think illustrates Clarke's points and my own intellectual and spiritual sojourn perfectly.




The Black Snob said...

Have fun. Good luck. And I'll still be here blogging obsessively until you come back!


The Black Snob said...

And I told myself I wasn't going to watch that clip from "Glory."

But I did anyway.

Damn. That movie. It's a good thing it was just that one scene because between that last fatal charge in "Glory" and the "Free Mr. Clark" chant at the end of "Lean On Me," plus, pick a scene, any scene in "The Color Purple" and I'm a mess. A crying, hating myself for watching the movie mess.

Oh. And the King miniseries. Lord. Why is every serious movie about black people the saddest thing in the world?

The Uppity Negro said...

Whoa...the Comps!! Good luck man, I'll be headed down that same road in no time. Make the rest of us proud!


Veronica said...

Good Luck!!!!
You are going to do well!!!
You ARE excellence!

Much love and respect always
Peace n Blessings


Constructive Feedback said...

Excuse me Mr. Intellectual - I have a question for you that might satisfy my lack of understanding in regards to the history and its importance in our lives as descendants from Africa.

In having watched a show today which presented a scientific version of how the Earth was created and all of the animals had evolved the scientific conclusion was that the Earth is several hundred millions of years old.

My question to you as I read your web site and all of the various references to "American Slavery" is With the fact that the human species has been on this Earth for several tens of thousands of years......why do you contextualize the HISTORY of the Black man, limiting your focus to the past 300 years in which we were enslaved? Shouldn't the greater history of the African be seen as the "rule" while this short 300 years is the "exception"?

What am I missing that allows this recent history to trump the millennium of freedom and self sufficiency that our people have survived through?

The statement of "Those who forget their history are bound to repeat it" is fatalistic as it purports that our's was a history of SLAVERY.

The truth is that this overused statement should be changed to "Those who don't know their HISTORY will never reorient themselves and their consciousness to their former glory". Indeed - how does one become "unenslaved" mentally, culturally and economically IF so more disproportionate focus is spent on 300 years rather than 10,000+?

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Negrointellectual by Vernon C. Mitchell, Jr. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
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