“You, my audience, are all a bunch of poppaloppers. A bunch of tumbling weeds, tumbling ’round, running from your subconscious unconscious minds…. Minds? Minds that won’t let you stop to listen to a word of artistic meaningful truth…. So you come to me, you sit in the front row, as noisy as can be. I listen to your millions of conversations, sometimes pulling them all up together and writing a symphony. But you never hear that symphony… You haven’t been told before that you’re phonies. You’re here because jazz is popular, jazz has publicity and you like to associate yourself with this sort of thing. But it doesn’t make you a connoisseur of the art because you follow it around. You’re dilettantes of style. A blind man can go to an exhibition of Picasso and Kline and not even see what works. And comment behind dark glasses. Wow! They’re the swingingest painters ever, crazy! Well, so can you. You’ve got your dark glasses and clogged-up ears…. You become the object you came to see, and you think you’re important and digging jazz when all the time all you’re doing is digging a blind, deaf scene that has nothing to do with any kind of music at all.”
Charles Mingus addressing the audience at the Five Spot in NYC.
Meshell Ndegeocello - Suzanne (Collaborative Video)
Meshell’s collaborative fan music video for the track “Suzanne” off her album Pour une ame souveraine (For a sovereign soul) - A dedication to Nina Simone.
Ancient Future: The Teachings and Prophetic Wisdom of the Seven Hermetic Laws of Ancient Egypt by Wayne B. Chandler, with an introduction by Ivan Van Sertima
“Ancient Future celebrates the wisdom of those ancient civilizations that did not disassociate the philosophical, spiritual, and material realms of life. This book is an attempt to recreate this holistic experience in hopes that a synthesized view of life will become of the twenty-first century.”
Chinua Achebe: 12 Quotes On Stories
- If you don’t like someone’s story, write your own.
- To me, being an intellectual doesn’t mean knowing about intellectual issues; it means taking pleasure in them.
- Nobody can teach me who I am. You can describe parts of me, but who I am - and what I need - is something I have to find out myself.
- My weapon is literature.
- People create stories create people; or rather stories create people create stories.
- Storytellers are a threat. They threaten all champions of control.
- It is the storyteller who makes us what we are, who creates history. The storyteller creates the memory that the survivors must have - otherwise their surviving would have no meaning.
- The emperor would prefer the poet to keep away from politics, the emperor’s domain, so that he can manage things the way he likes.
- We cannot trample upon the humanity of others without devaluing our own.
- If you only hear one side of the story, you have no understanding at all.
- The only thing we have learnt from experience is that we learn nothing from experience.
- Stories serve the purpose of consolidating whatever gains people or their leaders have made or imagine they have made in their existing journey thorough the world.
Chinua Achebe is a Nigerian novelist, poet, professor, and critic. He is best known for his first novel and magnum opus, Things Fall Apart, which has sold more than 8 million copies around the world, and been translated into 50 languages. Achebe is the most translated African writer of all time.
Nelson Mandela referred to Achebe as a writer ‘in whose company the prison walls fell down’.
Achebe is the recipient of over 30 honorary degrees. He has been awarded the Man Booker International Prize, the Commonwealth Poetry Prize, an Honorary Fellowship of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Nigerian National Order of Merit.
by Amanda Patterson
From Writers Write
Land without borders! ..One human body