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photoMy work on the Lincoln Film has been transformative. I have gone back to read W.E. B DuBois Black Reconstruction in America, Doris Kearns Goodman Band of Rivals, and Fawn Brodie's Thaddeus Stevens: Scourge of the South, about one of the true, anti-racist warriors. I have been studying and learning from Black teachers and Black history since I was 17, and yet the process of knowledge is perpetual. Prompted by my anger at and strong disagreement with the writing of Tony Kushner in the Lincoln screenplay, I have been studying, studying, and studying more and more about the civil war and Reconstruction and the treachery of white imperialism and how it works, and the profound beyond-words amazing role of Black people in their struggle not just for their own liberation but for the liberation of all oppressed people. In this review, I was clearly influenced by my conversation with Mumia Abu Jamal on my radio show, Voices from the Frontlines about what he called "menticide" inflicted on Black youth by the system's systematic campaign to eradice and deny them their people's revolutionary History. I am continuing the interrogation of the film Lincoln to teach how many elements of white chauvinism permeated the entire film to raise awareness of the profound racism of white liberal thought and how we can learn categories to identify and expose them—beginning in our own minds. I wrote the book, Katrina's Legacy: White Racism and Black Reconstruction in New Orleans and the Gulf Coast as another weapon in this struggle. It would mean a lot if you would circulate this review to friends as we await the "spectacle" of the White Oscars in which Black People, great historical actors, are treated as invisible women and men. I hope we can use this review as a small contribution to the ongoing struggle to elevate Black revolutionary political thought and denigrate white chauvinist ideology.

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About the Author

  • Eric Mann is a veteran of the Congress of Racial Equality, Students for a Democratic Society, and the United Auto Workers, where he spent ten years on auto assembly lines. He is the director of the Labor/Community Strategy Center in Los Angeles and the author of Playbook for Progressives: 16 Qualities of the Successful Organizer. He is the host of the radio show Voices from the Frontlines (KPFK 90.7 FM Los Angeles Pacifica. His radio show and blogs can be found at www.voicesfromfrontlines.com

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