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Black Power - a Basic Understanding by Walter Rodney

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“Black Power, A Basic Understanding” by Walter Rodney

“Black Power, A Basic Understanding”, black isn’t as basic as Walter Rodney states it. This chapter is very interesting in which it describe the state at which blacks, non white, are also known as colored people and are powerless due to the white supremacy of white power. As the write starts off, “Black Power is a doctrine about black people”, but not all black people know nor understand the notion of being black. “I have chosen skin color as essentially the most binding factor in our world”, for all people including those not in the United States, but in the islands, or those of the same social class background will be classified as being black due to the mere fact of a labeling process white created the writer explains. “In the U.S.A. if one is not white, then one is black”, as the writer states as also true in many other places such as, “In Britain if one is not white then one is colored”, and in South Africa “one can be white, colored or black depending upon how white people classify you”, the writer describes how whites are to better understand the correlation made between the whites and white power. So as the writer entails, being black isn’t decided by white people but rather “by White Power’, because if you are black then you’re excluded from power for “Power is kept pure milky white”.

As mentioned, blacks are labeled by the white world and usually become “the most important thing about him”, as the write puts it. As he continues to point out, “literally whites can not tell one black from another”, him being fat or thin, intelligent or stupid, criminal or sportsman for we all just black. The writer finds reasons that white people inability to distinguish the millions of black people from one another whose homelands are in Asia, Africa, and few in the Americas, is because “white people do not personally know many black people”, the write stated; oddly, “reflecting a psychological tendency to deny our individuality by refusing to consider us as individual human beings”. In agreement with the writer, I’ve been told on several occasions to be a black girl by whites in Power, and when I explained that I am of Haitian descent first generation American it meant nothing more than just black. So to whites as noted in the chapter, “a Pakistani could and would be easy spotted as a Nigerian in the Midlands just to be simply black”.

In addition, to the writer points on black and white, there are also many events that describe the power relations between them in this chapter. First, “the First World War in 1914, the capitalist division of the world was complete”, states the writer. The division which made capitalists dominant over workers and white people dominant over blacks, and at this point in the world” white people held power in all its aspects of politics, economics, the military, and even culture the author mentions. So the power episode became all over including Europe, Americas, and in Africa the whites held power. “The essence of white power is that it is exercised over black people”, the writer suggest, “whether it was a country belonging originally to whites or to blacks”. In example, blacks are powerless in their own home which occurred in Africa. In result, “black people have no share in that power and are, therefore, denied any say in their own destinies”, the author writes. This in fact occurred over 400 years of slavery and transferred millions of Africans to work and die in the New World.

Secondly, “since 1917 White Power has been slowly reduced”, as the write notes. Another event had been when the Russian Revolution put an end to Russian imperialism in the Far east, and the Chinese Revolution by 1949 had emancipated the world’s largest single ethnic group from the white power complex. As writes continues to explain that in result, “the white power which is our enemy is that which is exercise over black peoples, irrespective of which group is in the majority and irrespective of whether the particular country belonged originally to whites or blacks”, the write repeats again. The message the author is sending is that power resides in the white countries and is exercise over blacks allover the world not only in Africa as we may know but also happened in different parts of the global as well. For example, in Haiti, the Haitians

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