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Deconstructing Frameworks of Truth: From Black Bodies Belonging To a Nation


INTRODUCTION According to Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche, nothing is without

examination of spatial and temporal relevance: time and place. To think in the bifurcation of truth versus fallacy as universal is a simplification, a flattening of history, abstracted from context of language, time, and place. There is no pure truth, however the price to construct such notions as truthful bare costly tolls and have been visible in the historical calculation of Black bodies: stolen, raped, beaten, murdered, incarcerated, detained, subjugated, and assimilated. It is to say that through a genealogical excavation of the human sciences and its dominant truths, being attentive to temporal contingencies, Black bodies as linkages to America (The United States of America) are objectified, therefore systemically and socially silenced, in part by their histories, and by the castingof their existences and future possibilities. Prior to the banning of January 1808 White European colonizers imported massive numbers of Black bodies from the continent of Africa to be colonized slave-laborers, part of chattel slavery. The black skin of Africans was the marker of difference, used systematically and scientifically to distinguish and segregate bodies. Distinctions existed between the bodies in tribes, languages and social rankings, but these distinctions were

strategically resolved as slave drivers made sure to break up bands of Africans who communicated together for they posed a threat to the European colonizers; as successful communication could render retaliation. Such rape of linguistic and cultural history results in a degradation of self for the Black body in America. The essence, the soul, the core African identity was ripped from enslaved Black bodies. The Black colonized body had become the objectified being: a slave, viable to White colonialist supremacy lawfully, scientifically, politically and economically.

II. Pathologizations of Black Bodies: Niggers and Knowledge Production Through a compilation of history, events, narratives, and successes it seems that the pathologization of Black bodies in the United States has emerged from fragmented, yet dominant truths. To stereotype that all Blacks eat Soul Food, undoubtedly rejects the historical emergence of Soul Food, and the cultural and political sustenance of Soul Food. It is not safe to minimize what constitutes a large degree of importance by simplifying the various contexts in which have cultivated evolution and adaptation. However, the Human Sciences in their dominant capacities have done just that. The Black body as an enslaved object, through diligent intellectual collaboration proves to be also a subject, bound to servitude. The

interweaving of the political and legal systems of America (The United States of America) validated inhumane categorization of Black bodies through various forms of division. It was through a type of quarantining that White colonizers, and other authority figures could pathologize people whom happened to share similar skin colors and political subjugation. For example the denial to educate Black bodies resulted in uneducated Black bodies. This political and legalized limitation became a pathologization that Black bodies were uneducated and incapable of learning. They were niggers, not fully human, still lacking, yet not racialized as man. The dominant scientific belief within the Human Sciences that Knowledge is universal is the same truth that concealed and rationally justified Blacks social and political existence as inhuman, material, property, and objects. The instances in which a Black body had been formally educated and cultured, according to European standards, was utterly rejected, questionable, and similarly mystical/mystified. For other Black bodies, a sense of pride could be taken upon witnessing an intelligent, knowledgeable, and cultured Black. It is for this reason that such a sophisticated Black body would be silenced, and deemed threatening to the larger White society. It is for this reason that educating Blacks was outlawed.

A. Division of labor

The applicable social scientific practices that were normalized on the American plantations have immense ramifications in the American psyches, counter-memories, and histories. Through practices of division, Black bodies were subjugated to variant treatment and/or select advantages and disadvantages. I must reiterate the analysis within historical context that these bodies were not human. They were objects to be owned and used. Any psychological difference that one may have had was consequence in fact an impact or effect of the internalized oppression undergone to the social and environmental inequities a slave was subject to. Some slaves were favored for their docility, some for their musical talents. In the case of the Black woman, she could have been favored for many reasons, for they were defiled sexually, structurally, and politically with no remorse from their oppressors. W.E.B. Dubois quotes from Double Consciousness and the Veil:
The red stain of bastardy, which two centuries of systematic legal defilement of Negro women had stamped upon his race, meant not only the loss of ancient African chastity, but also the hereditary weight of a mass of corruption from White adulterers, threatening almost the obliteration of the Negro home.

The sexual subjugation of Black women during colonialism was acquitting of White colonizers as well as fellow slaves from criminalization. This process further divided the Black woman, objectifying her as a sexual entity, as well as subjecting her to open sexual arrangements for breeding purposes. It was biologically and politically enforced through government regulation to

adhere towards rigid reproductive policy, for the common good of the political economy. In 1808 the United States government banned involvement with the Transoceanic Slave trade, which called for White colonizers to breed Black bodies for economic gain; this layering of reproductive exploitation further complexified the structural practices in which Black slaves had already been pathologized: rights lacking, uneducated, and furthermore they were pathologized as promiscuous niggers. The Black bodies of those times were purposefully targeted to propagate as a means to maintain the economic power of White society in the United States of America. The breeding of Black bodies took place on plantations, and sometimes a lighter skinned child would be born only to reveal a once mystified series of rapings inflicted upon the Black slave woman by her White owner(s). Most commonly, it was the lighter skinned slaves that held advantageous positionality on the plantation. These were the slaves that lived in the house. They were privileged socially, compared to their darker counterparts. The complicity of the mixed slave translated into an internalized oppression and/or division. They were not free, yet had White fathers, with whom they may or may not have even known. Bastard children they were known as, adding to the pre-existing pathologization of Black bodies. How could a Black slave escape the dominant truths that evidenced him or her as inhuman and therefore unworthy of freedom? Perhaps through intellectualism Blacks could distinguish themselves from their inherited

oppressions. As the standardization of knowledge flooded universities, it was pathologizations based on dominant truths that were studied. And the knowledge circulating on the Black was just as standardized. It could not be assumed that every Black body had an owner, nor could it be assumed that every Black body was unintelligent and lacking of skills or education. Those whom were free had documentation to prove their freedom, and most whom were free were also literate. Dominant beliefs about Blacks capabilities overshadowed subaltern realities, to the point that Blacks that had special skill sets and/or abilities remained silent, in fear that they would be whipped, hung, or sold off away from their families as repercussion. W.E.B. Dubois has written on the double consciousness that develops within the Black as a result of heavy social liabilities that Black life in America constitutes. In Double Consciousness and the Veil, Dubois writes:
It is a peculiar sensation, this double consciousness, this sense of always looking at ones self-through the eyes of others, of measuring ones soul by the tape of a world that looks on in amused contempt and pity.

The hurdles that a Black must endure during 18th and 19th century America flowed like mountains into valleys, changing form and shape just as policy changed over the years. Rationality was the root of the cause. Because the American political economy depended on the free labor of Black bodies to

work in agriculture on southern and Midwestern plantations, it was only rational to dismiss Blacks as intellectuals.

B. The Negro Intellectual and Knowledge Production Knowledge, deemed by the Black, consists of culture, but also takes into consideration external issues that have astronomical effects on cultural traditions and practices. To the contrary, earlier pathologizations grounded in universal truths and rationality circulated knowledge on Negro society that constantly affected National assumptions. According to Franz Fanon in Decolonizing, National Culture and the Negro Intellectual:
Culture is becoming more and more cut off from the events of today. It finds its refuge beside a hearth that glows with passionate emotion, and from there makes its way by realistic paths which are the only means by which it may be made fruitful, homogenous, and consistent.

The Negro Black could learn; although not fully human according to Americas three fifths compromise, nevertheless the common ideology was changing. Out of strategic thinking Blacks were able to form alliances with White abolitionists, activists, and politicians alike. Black life imploded music, religion, and scholarship, contesting dominant truths that had arisen about the meaning of life, culture, knowledge, and inevitably freedom. It would be through musical and religious platforms, as the most supported and embracive institutions for Blacks in America, that intellectual, social,

economic, and political breakthroughs would be grounded. And through those platforms the search for freedom as emancipation, and humanity would be trialed. The emancipation of Black bodies in America rested on many factors. Perhaps the greatest possibility for slaves to ever escape chattel slavery depended on support from northerners; by the mid 19th century most northern states opposed slavery. Northern economies relied on industrialization, which caused for a different type of labor; a more rational progressive labor. Industrialization would challenge colonialism and the lowtech agricultural practices of the South, successively resulting in grand schisms between the Northern and Southern regions of the United States. A run-away slave by the name of Frederick Douglass came to expand upon reasons for abolishing slavery. 1Born into slavery in 1818 on the Holmes Hill farm in Eastern Maryland, Douglass would become one of the most prominent leaders of the Anti-Slavery Abolition Movement of the United States. Douglass earlier years of life seem to align profusely with the dominant truths of American society. He was born to a Black mother and a White, unknown father. During his time of being favored by master his tasks were more domestic, watching over the masters younger son, whom was

Douglass was born in February 1818 as part of the estate of Aaron Anthony, who managed other Maryland plantations that belonged to the wealthy Edward Lloyd V. As cited in A biography of the life of Frederick Douglass by Sandra Thomas.

most likely to be Douglass half brother. Along with that task he ran errands for the members of the house. It was not until Douglass witnessed the harsh treatment of his family members on the plantation that he internalized the institution of slavery. Blacks were prone to random whippings for disobedience and/or defiance. Consequently, the young Douglass' eagerness to escape the hells of slavery began to emerge, and thoughts and plans of the attempt pre-dominated his psyche. After forging a runaway attempt, he was separated from his family and sent to Baltimore to assist his owner extended family. The daughter-in-law Anthony began teaching the eager and articulate Frederick how to read. Upon learning of her tutorial sessions, her husband, Anthonys son, was strictly advised on the reasons why to not educate slaves: it would interfere with the slaves tasks, make the slave disobedient, and would eventually allude to realizations of freedom as liberation. By prohibiting Douglass from an education, his owners were subjugating him to ignorance, pathologizing him. Their control and dominant reasons for such actions were consistent amongst the majority of Southern slave-owners. There was a correlation between the dominant notions of freedom that esteemed northern Whites in the United States, nonetheless; they were based on influences from the French revolution. Economic gaps and disparities divided American ideology and National goals, but also posited the permeable, much necessary niches for Black intellectuals like Douglass to use to persuade the Abolition Movement to the masses. Although the idea

of freedom as emancipation was morally grounded, it was financially benefitting for a capitalist economy as well. The more mobile bodies within the capitalist America equated more National wealth. Each man should be free to compete and free from authority. In statements written by Frederick Douglass in the periodical the Liberator, he explains how for him and other Blacks, freedom meant freedom from White ownership and slavery. He later expanded that freedom included freedom from racist oppression. However the latter ideology was not so widely accepted by dominant society, as all Blacks were not understood to be worthy of freedom, let alone able to evade racism in its totality. The emerging and dominant understanding of slavery was that the evils of slavery held the soul back, limiting man from his full potential. B. The other Other: Negro and Gendered Not only did dominant notions of freedom hold the soul back, dominant ideologies held women back profusely. Alongside the Anti-Slavery movement was the emerging and awareness of Womens rights. Frederick Douglass partner William Garrison, a White man, avidly promoted the Anti-Slavery Movement as well as Womens rights. In regards to womens rights during the mid to late 19th century the dominant truth held by rights-having male citizens of America, was that women were not separate beings, but were supplements to her husband, father, brother(s), and/or son(s). Of course, such a gender-biased ideology favored men: legally and socially, as such

inheritances, riches, and entitlements would be deemed the belongings of the man of the family. The ideology that women were completely subordinate to men began to slowly digress within the political arena. Examining the layers of such a historical discourse, it is important to bring in Black subaltern voices, as Mae Gwendolyn Henderson remarks, It is not that black women, in the past, have not had nothing to say, but rather that they have had no say. So, how did dominant discourses on womens rights of that particular era effect and/or encompass free and enslaved Black women? According to Sojourner Truth in her speech Aint I a Woman, He talks about this thing in the head. Whats that they call it? A nearby woman whispers Intellect. Truth concludes, Whats intellect got to do with

womens rights or black folks rights? What does intellect have to do with the rights of women or Blacks? During the late 18th century the dominant belief in science and philosophy was that intellect reflected a higher self of personal development, and those without certain knowledges were lesser developed. This included women and of course, Blacks. Analyzing the Romantic Tradition of Western Thought, the other is necessary only as a reflection of the dominant, a reflection that mirrors an earlier more primitive stage of development. Within her speech, Aint I a Woman, Truth makes comparative references to her strength; her ability to endure strenuous work plowing and planting on the plantation to the work that men perform. She can eat just as much as man can, when the food is available. She was able to watch the children she bore, her own flesh and blood be sold off like objects

in the capitalist marketplaces. Her strength was powerful. Therefore, I must remark, what does intellect have to do with the rights of Black women?

Early Involvement in Political Movements Like Frederick Douglass worked alongside William Garrison on AntiSlavery campaigns, Sojourner Truth built alliances with White women, and helped strengthen the Womens Rights Movement. Truths positionality challenged dominant truths: the truth that Blacks lacked intellect and the truth that women were weak and subordinate had all been pathologizations based on the social places allocated for and by gender due to dynamics of power. Hierarchically White womens struggle was not the struggle that Black women faced. Foremost, Blacks were fighting for legal emancipation from White owners. Their ability to be free was contingent upon either being born into freedom, buying ones freedom, or escaping to the North where most states had already abolished slavery. Here talk about Christianity and the Church and how Black women and men of the south grabbed a hold of it for survival. Spirituals, connected to the church as slave music The influence of Protestantism and dominant Christian ideologies surrounding freedom alluded to what Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel predicts,

Freedom is action with accordance of necessity. The realization of spirit,

As quoted in Critical History of the Human Sciences on October 8, 2010.

freedom propels spirit towards realization. Whether it was an idea or a realization, the American populace was in an uproar about all the possibilities of freedom that seemed possible to achieve. And Black bodies will fought for freedom. Tension between the Northern and Southern states intensified; one of the contributing factors was the increasing number of run-away slaves from the South that escaped to the North. Attributing financial, structural, and moral pressures valued and enforced by the federal union led to the final snap; the radical move by the South to organize themselves into independent and separate states known as The Confederate States. The intraregional scrutiny eventually led to the Civil War, and Blacks were felt the effects of such war. Many Southern slave-owners promised their slaves their freedom if they fought in the war. Northern States wanted to abolish slavery altogether. Black slaves forced to fight were caught in a dilemma: either fight for Southern Whites with the promise of freedom, or fight for Whites and Northerners in hopes that the Federal Union abolish slavery.


Emancipated, but not Liberated As a consequence, ending the American Civil War which lasted from

1861 to 1865 the 13th Amendment to the Constitution was passed, although not ratified until 1868, emancipating the Black bodies whom were infringed

As cited from (the 14th amendment ratified).

within the slave system. Suddenly a legalized benefit begot over Blacks in the North and South regions. But how did life improve for Blacks in the South after the Civil War? Because the Confederate States were defeated by the Northern Union, much of the Southern land plots owned by radical Whites were confiscated by the government. Some of the land was allocated to a small number of freed Blacks. For the majority of freed individuals, their freedom meant new worries for livelihood. The period known as the Reconstruction Era in the United States of America was a pivotal time where Black identity was questionable. Were they really free? Many Whites resented the fact that the Emancipation Proclamation granted freedom to Blacks; physical attacks and lynchings increased as racial brutality became a way to counteract Blacks progression in America. Black freedom was inevitable and legally evident. This new found freedom, the ratification of the Emancipation Proclamation, economically and socially positioned southern Blacks to work in sharecropping on the cotton and tobacco plantations, and in wage labor positions on sugar plantations; this work mirrored that of the slave era. How could Blacks be freed, yet still be subjugated to a slave standard of life? Facing racial tensions and economic hardships, something had to change for the better. The way in which the term freedom was understood in its negative dimension meant freedom from slavery. Black men in the South, debating over the actuality of freedom, inspired to see freedom in its positive

dimension, as freedom to. Whether they remained in the Southern states or migrated North, Blacks utilized their freedom to built communities consisting of churches, schools, shops, and other businesses.

The Freedmens Bureau established by Congress in 1865 assisted

newly freed Blacks and poor Whites after the Civil War/ Abolition era. Freedmens Bureau is known as Americas first institution of social welfare; helped Blacks reach economic, civil, educational, and political rights in America. The fact that Blacks started their own institutions, I believe helped them in America to become more independent, also differentiated them from the mainstream. Why did Blacks form their own institutions in America?

The Social Construction of Race Knowledge production of the late 19th century influenced much of the national assumption and constitution of Blackness in America. Grounded in truths surrounding biological interpretations of development as evolution, Charles Darwins influences affected Anthropologists like Louis H. Morgan, Herbert Spencer, and Edward Burnett Tylor; they have commented anthropologically on the discourse of such a social evolvements known as race. Tylor quotes:

As cited from Freedmens Bureau on Brittanica Online Encyclopedia -

The inquirer who seeksthe beginnings of mans civilization must deduce

general principles by reasoning downwards from the cilivised European to the savage, and then descend to still lower levels of human existence.

Constant social and political needs adapted through science had proven that some groups of people were in fact lesser human, in some cases, some beings were not even considered to be human. It was socially evident by observing particular groups in their ethnographic environment, observing practices and/or abilities, that consequently science had proven a lesser human species could exist. Blacks, now the freed people were objectified, lesser human beings, and therefore socially excluded from Whites social areas including shops, restaurants, schools, neighborhoods, and more. They were even excluded from sharing public amenities and services such as water fountains, park benches, buses, and taxis. Blacks had designated times and days in which facilities welcomed their patronage. Society was controlled demographically as Black bodies were surveillanced limited by their inevitable Black skin from infesting mainstream society. As Blacks were controlled systematically, Local, State, and Federal laws, known as Jim Crow Laws, accepted segregation among society as a legitimate political division of races. Racial segregation as political and social practice, grounded in science will later be contested and found contradictory when Blacks gain economic advancement and seek to enter spaces where Whites formally had dominated. As a result to this type of social exclusion, Blacks went on to

As cited in Why did evolutionism become discredited in Anthropology by about 1920? ( Year Published, unknown ). D. Ayling.

built their own worlds, becoming entrepreneurs, owners; they became professionals in their own carved out space in American society. It must be understood that these Black communities were not built overnight, but took decades to establish. 6An important person to remember is Mary McLeod-Bethune, who would prosper and become one of Americas most influential women; she overcame economic impoverishment and fought head on against the racial discriminating society of her day. Born just after the emancipation era, she was one of seventeen children, born on a farm in South Carolina; McLeod-Bethune received her primary education at the Presbyterian Church built for Blacks some four miles down from her familys farm. A very diligent and bright student, she was sponsored by a woman in Detroit to further her education in North Carolina at Scotia Seminary. One success seemed to follow another, until the time when upon her preparing for a mission trip to Africa, she would later learn that her acceptance was denied for there not being any open positions available to Blacks (at that specific time she applied). As apparent the lives affected by racism in America during the turn of the century, approximately the 1900s, it is notable to examine systemic opportunities versus systemic limitations. How is it possible that an administrative body, consisting of various coordinating members, could reject an applicant who meets all the necessary requirements for a position?

As cited in Mary McLeod-Bethune. Carol Sears Botsch

The reason is due to the scientifically proven social construct of race, Blacks were first rejected as capable human beings who could think, act, and be part of White, dominate, mainstream society. However there were exceptions to this science, although, overall the exposure to opportunities for social and/or upward mobility would either be limited or abundant, depending on ones race. In the case of Mary McLeod-Bethune, her application for the mission trip to Africa was rejected because she was Black. However, racism, as much as individuals try to reduce its validity and influence over Nations, systemically, it was not illegal, immoral, nor intolerant to inform a denied applicant that his or her application or acceptance had been denied solely on the prcis of his or her racial categorization. Powerfully manipulative and discriminative dynamics and practices grounded in racial science inflict lives were tolerated. The power and rationality of science discourses attributed to how dominant practices and attitudes structured the social order of America. Who used science to validate race and racism? As Mary McLeodBethune studied at Presbyterian churches and schools; were the churches in America racist too? Perhaps it is legitimate to say that most institutions were racist during the late 19th century. McLeod-Bethune did not cease her endeavors, however. Later in her life, after teaching and performing social work in several southern states she decided to open a school for (Black) girls.

By 1904 she had founded Daytona Educational and Industrial Training

School with five students. Within three years after much hard work of fundraising and involving the community McLeod-Bethune expanded her school purchasing over thirty acres of land, housing some fourteen building and four hundred students. McLeod-Bethune eventually opened more schools that educated Black students across the South. She quotes:
I cannot rest while there is a single Negro boy or girl lacking the chance to prove his worth.

Mary McLeod-Bethunes strength and perseverance is commemorated; her ability to fight during times of extreme racial tension empowered the Black community to seek a path of resistance to oppression. The story is remembered when McLeod-Bethune watch-guarded the school property all night and day, as a group of Ku Klux Klan members threatened to burn the building down. Needless to say, The Ku Klux Klan did not go through with the arson attempt. As the times were changing, socially and politically, Blacks found it ever so restraining to remain in the South where racism permeated. Lacking opportunities for work combined with a slowly progressing economy meant fewer jobs. The new idea was to move North and Westward.

As cited in Mary McLeod-Bethune. Carol Sears Botsch.


The Great Migration (1890-1970)

At the turn of the 20th century Black bodies who slaved on southern soils lived to watch the country of the proud and the free change politically and socially. The First Wave of The Great Migration is known as 8the largest voluntary internal movement of black people ever seen. Some two-hundred and fifty thousand Blacks migrated north to cities such as Saint Louis, Detroit, Chicago and Cleveland. Approximately some thirty-five thousand Blacks moved far westward settling in Western and Southwestern states. From 1890 to 1910 urbanization, as the influx of rural dwellers to urban spaces, welcomed a new migrated demographic of Black faces. It was not so much that the economies of the North and West provided flourishing opportunities to Blacks, because many found themselves discontent with their new homes. 9Competing with Whites for employment, Blacks had fewer opportunities and reluctantly found employment doing the undesirable, working as strikebreakers and working in the meat packing industry. Most Black women in urban centers landed positions as domestic workers, as maids, cooks, and care-takers; and overtime due to WWI and its wounded soldiers the profound need for Nurses and other healthcare

As cited from The Migration Numbers. This quotation refers respectively to the First Wave of The Great Migration which was charted from approximately 1910-1919.

As cited from J. Grossman (2005). The Great Migration. The Encyclopedia of Chicago.

specialists meant Black women could gradually enter the mainstream healthcare and medical arena. Overlapping World War I, the Womens Suffrage Movement, and the First Wave of the Great Migration, Americans ideologies were shifting consequently.
10Out of this war will rise an American Negro with the right to vote and the right to work and the right to live without insult.

After 1917 when the United States passed the Selective Service Act,

White and Black bodies were drafted to fight in the war (World War I 1914-1918) leaving many job vacancies open. These northern vacancies, usually lower skilled positions, provided Blacks opportunities: a chance to succeed and achieve the American Dream. The ideology behind The American Dream helped solidify the United States as a nation and mold the people into unifying modes of thinking. According to Jim Cullen (2003) the American Dream is the idea that you can have anything you want if you want it badly enough. The chase towards the American Dream rung as propaganda throughout American society, motivating, inspiring citizens to work hard, save, and live happily ever after. Understanding that the upon the early 20th century, some one hundred years after the first American school of Anthropology was founded at

Quoted by W.E.B. Dubois in 1917, as cited from The Great War: Overview

As cited from Timeline: 1917.

Columbia University, discourses surrounding the construct of race, had profound influences over political/governmental practices. How did this affect the succeeding migration of Blacks in the following decades?

The Second Wave of the Great Migration (1940-1970) The American people endured extremely violent times the first thirty years of the 20th century. The Klu Klux Klan, a terrorist organization founded on White supremacist principles perpetuated to the Race wars of society. Amid Blacks and Whites tension grew and also which inspired many to follow the American Dream, to work hard and live peacefully and happily. The Second Wave being influenced by subaltern Thought and discourses, PanAfricanist Marcus Garvey, Educator Booker T. Washington, Sociologist W.E.B. Dubois, Religious Leader and International Human Rights Activist Malcolm X, also known as El Hajj Malik El-Shabazz, and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. all contributed great resistances from the Black male perspective. Preaching unity, emancipation, education, self-love and pride, each of these figures had distinct ideologies, however their aims were all consistent and insubvertedly aligned with the American Dream: to have peace and happiness. With faith in their hearts Blacks, typically migrating as families, moved Northward bound for a change. From 1916 to 1960 close to one million Blacks had migrated from their Southern and mostly rural communities into Northern urban centers. As the United States supplied materials to aid Great

Britain and Russia during WWII (1940-1945) the jobs provided seemed to counteract harsh realities the nation faced during the Great Depression. Some men worked as construction workers, building roads, train tracks, walls, homes, and buildings. Some joined the military. It seems that the cohesiveness of American society was contingent upon a strong work ethic, to be constantly improving, in aims of a goal. Black bodies entranced by Blues which later evolved into Jazz, developed a counterculture that was centrifugal towards the dominant Black culture, which had been more Christian, more Southern, more traditional.


Where are we now? (1980-2010) Studying the Great Migration and its affects is a feasible point where

the divisible growth amid the Black community can be excavated by examining dominant truths and the effects of such power/knowledge and power/dynamics implicated by the nuances of time. What brought success to some, where murder was onto others? Jurgen Habernas (1968) writes:
The sciences have retained one characteristic of philosophy: the illusion of pure theory Knowledge-constitutive interests From knowing not what they do methodologically, they are that much surer of their discipline, that is of methodical progress within an unproblematic framework.

It is my own assumption as a Black women living in 21st century America that I presume that through observation, resistance, and communitarian efforts

Black bodies have survived in America. The pursuit of an American dream through peaceful protest, violent protests, racial tensions, discrimination and brutality, through education, and spiritual development somewhere lies many truths that may not be inscribed scientifically. They may not heard by the mainstream. According to Mae Gwendolyn Henderson ( ), Black women writers have encoded oppression as a discourse dilemma, that is, their works have consistently raised the problem of the black womans relationship to power and discourse. Silence is an important element of this code. The fact that I write not only calls the attention of to the world, hundreds of years of silenced oppression, bearing witness to those fallen women, White, men, Black, and those others. When I write of my truth it is angry, for I bear witness to my own oppression, for yet I have no spoken. Men, white, women, white, men, black, women, black have all oppressed me, and women like me, just as thus created systems of power. There is no monolithic experience, truth, or ability. Understand that my legacy is one that has spoken and therefore been assassinated. They have been hung from trees; whipped til their black skins have ripped from the bone. So when I speak, it is not for a chance at the American Dream. I speak for those who can no longer speak. I write for those who lost their lives, because they wrote their truths. Mae Gwendolyn Henderson adds:
Yet the objective of these writers is not, as some critics suggest, to move from margin to center, but to remain on the borders of discourse, speaking from the vantage point of the insider/outsider.

As an Anthropologist, Black, Womyn, hyper-sexed, pathologized, there is no way dominant human scientific truths have no affected my identity, for how others see me and how I see myself. Somewhere along the path to the American Dream, I sit, there at the margin of an urban intersection. Any spare change I have, I give to my Black brother standing on the median, begging. His story, his truths remain silenced. But they are real, and nowhere in the White House has the first Black President Barack Obama voiced this epidemic, for silence permeates us all. Why doesnt he speak to us?