Feb. 11, 2017

Somebody Blew Up America, Written Analysis, Our Black History Need Not Ever Be A Black Mystery

Amiri Baraka

Somebody Blew Up America

The spoken words can antagonize, petrify, arouse the senses, please the masses, elevate passions, defy power, cause distrust, incite anger, shake your slumber, but the most importantly the spoken word must not be silenced. No matter how it may strike passion be it negative or positive the words of those who speak truth to power must remain on the vanguard of a free society. On both sides of the aisle, we disagree with the message. We may even in some cases find it horrific. It still must be protected by the rights of expression. I can choose to disagree with your words but I do not have the right to attempt to silence your voice. This was the case with Amiri Baraka’s poem, Somebody Blew Up America, which caused quite a stir in the nation, especially in New Jersey, where Amiri Baraka was the state’s Poet Laureate. His resignation was demanded by the Governor, and New Jersey State Senate and State Assembly abolished the position of Poet Laureate. Simply because as a poet Amiri Baraka had a mission to reflect his thoughts on paper and in his voice. Mr. Baraka was the voice of agitation during the Black Freedom Freedom after the assassination of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King. He willingly spoke truth to power. So this morning I will commit my entire presentation to this controversial poem which shook the sense of a nation recovering from the devastation of events on 9/11/2001. The words were raw, the words were gripping, the words incited passions both negative and positive. Well, it that the purpose of agitated prose to force one to come face to face with a different level of reality? This nation has created much havoc to many of its own inhabitants. Yet, it is the only nation that I know so I will continue to love the possibilities of possibilities that eventually the creed of brotherhood and equality to overtake the seeds hatred and despair. In his words, my voice Amiri Baraka’s Somebody Blew Up America. I will also do some of Mr. Baraka’s other collections later this month but today I only ask that we remember this”our black history need not ever be a black mystery”.