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for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes


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 From the Black Arts Movement to Hip Hop is a panel discussion . . . Poet

Askia M. Toure cries, "Most of the hip hop generation has lost its national consciousness,

 in its rush to assimilate materialism, bling  bling, capitalism and misogyny.



Books by Marvin X

Love and War: Poems  / In the Crazy House Called America / Woman: Man's Best Friend Beyond Religion Toward Spirituality

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The Tenderloin Book Fair 

and University of Poetry, 2004

Celebrating the Radical Black Arts Movement



Recovery Theatre and Black Bird Press  is proud to host the San Francisco Tenderloin Book Fair and University of Poetry, 2004, celebrating the radical black arts movement, the most significant literary movement in African American history. But as we celebrate, we face the sober reality of a crisis in our community and the world. Author Sam Anderson tells us, "Never before in the history of African humanity has there been such a huge disconnect between revolutionary consciousness and our youth. This book fair should help face this crisis head on."

Indeed, if we look from Africa to America, we see youth in either reactionary drug gangs or diamond seeking child armies, with the ultimate beneficiary  American and/or European imperialism, African middle men serve as traditional colonial servants and running dogs, from Charles Taylor to Colin Powell, Lord have mercy!

As revolutionaries, we must ask ourselves why the diamond merchant and the dope dealer is the number one employer of our youth? In the final analysis, we must give youth a viable economic alternative to the drug culture, pimping life and employment as murderous child soldiers. As elders, we must teach alternatives to street and domestic violence, and we must teach by example.

We will address critical issues of this nature in a series of presentations, panels, workshops and spoken word performances, hopefully igniting the final stage of our cultural revolution, exposing and resolving contradictions that have derailed our recovery and liberation. "By cultural revolution we mean to raise the level of the people's education, eliminate illiteracy, and narrow mindedness," says Amiri Baraka.

One of the founders of the Black Arts Movement (BAM), Baraka will facilitate a workshop for radical writers sincere about going beyond rhetoric. "Projects for Radical Writers Workshop will discuss how writers can unite, inspire, educate, mobilize, organize the great majority of all nationalities to become part of a mass force needed to oppose the current fascist trend in America; this workshop will discuss how to create, publish, produce and distribute writings for the cultural revolution."

From the Black Arts Movement to Hip Hop is a panel discussion designed to address generational problems in African American culture. Poet Askia M. Toure cries, "Most of the hip hop generation has lost its national consciousness, in its rush to assimilate materialism, bling  bling, capitalism and misogyny. With the exception of Common, India Iree, Jill Scott, Dead Prez and a few others, most hip hop leaders don't appear to see that Africans in America have a cultural tradition and a legacy to defend. How did we go from 60s Black Queens and sista freedom fighters to skeezers, chicken-heads, bitches and hos? Why don't hip hop people seek out black revolutionaries?"

Amina Baraka answers Toure, "How can the hip hop generation learn from our mistakes if we are still making them?" And poetess Sonia Sanchez notes, "We cannot condemn the hip hop generation for doing on stage what the Black Arts Movement was doing behind closed doors."

Without a doubt, this panel will be hot and spirited, especially with the participation of the legendary Fillmore Slim. "My message is the same to all youth, male and female. Think about the consequences. There's a price. Are you willing to pay the price for being in the game. If you're willing  to pay the price, what can I say to you? I paid my dues, I went to prison. I'm not proud of what I did, so I tell people to think about the consequences of your actions, think about how you end up in the game."

The Tenderloin Book Fair will expose people to writers not seen in the commercial media and market place, especially self published authors. We want Tenderloin residents and others  to meet these authors who may offer an alternative to a lifestyle of drugs, crime and homelessness. After all, great literature is known to originate from such oppressed conditions, once the oppressed persons regain sobriety, sanity and radical consciousness. My play ONE DAY IN THE LIFE  based on my days as a drug addict in the Tenderloin has become a recovery classic. If I changed my self-destructive behavior to creativity, so can you.

Marvin X
Book Fair Producer,
Recovery Theatre Director


Book fair is free, but Registration is $20.00 for  admission to the University of Poetry, including the Rewards dinner, workshops, panels  and concerts ( both nights). Seating is limited, pre-registration advised. Tickets available at Reggae Runnins, 505 Divasadero, SF, Da Corner, 3rd and LaSalle, Hunters Point, Da Corner, Fillmore and Hayes, San Francisco, Aquarius Rising, 60th and Telegraph, Oakland. 

Or  send check to Recovery Theatre, 133 Golden Gate Ave., San Francisco, 94102. Vendors call Leona Lee at 415-986-8186. For More information call Marvin X @ 510-798-9155 or Geoffrey Grier at 415-241-6506. Special thanks to Joe Halaiko of Theatre St. Boniface.



Dr. Julia Hare,
How To Find A BMW (Black Man Working)
The wit and wisdom of this Queen Bee is nationally known. She stole the show at Marvin X's Kings and Queens of Black Consciousness Concert.

Dr. Nathan Hare, Black Anglo-Saxons
Father of Black Studies, sociologist and clinical psychologist, facilitates Recovery Theatre's mental health group session called Black Reconstruction.

Sonia Sanchez, Shake Loose My Skin
Poet, playwright, professor, undisputed queen of the Black Arts Movement.

Amiri Baraka (LeRoi Jones), Somebody Blew Up America
Poet, playwright, essayist, activist, godfather of the Black Arts Movement, pioneer of modern American literature.

Amina Baraka, poet, singer, dancer, cofounder of Spirit House.

Ishmael Reed, Another Day At the Front
Poet, playwright, essayist, novelist, publisher, MacArthur genius award winner.

Fillmore Slim, subject of legend and a movie Gospel of the Game. His day job is singing and playing the blues throughout the world.

Reginald Lockett, The Party Crashers of Paradise
Poet, professor. One of the original members of the West Coast black arts movement. Performed at Black House, San Francisco.

Devorah Major, An Open Weave
Poet, novelist, first African American poet laureate of San Francisco.

James Robinson, Gospel of the Game
Played the game and lived to tell the consequences in his novel Gospel of the Game.

Askia Toure, Dawnsong
Poet, essayist, activist, one of the godfather's of the Black Arts Movement.

Marvin X, In the Crazy House Called America
Poet, playwright, essayist, activist, producer of Tenderloin Book Fair and University of  Poetry. One of the founders of the BAM.

Opal Palmer Adisa, It Begins With Tears
Poet, professor, photographer. Opal and Devorah Major comprise the Daughters of Yam.

Jamie Walker, 101 Ways Black Women Can Learn To Love
poet, author, journalist, editor of Sonia Sanchez Anthology

Andriette Earl, Embracing Wholeness
Spiritual practitioner at the East Bay Church of Religious Science. She is a coach, speaker and facilitator.

Dingane (Joe Goncalves), founder of the Journal of Black Poetry, bible of the 60s radical poetry.

Luisa Teish, Carnival of the Spirit
Yoruba priestess, healer and spiritual worker.

Roxanne Ware, conscious hip hop poet. Her poem "Federal Offense" should be national anthem of the prison movement.

David Hilliard
, This Side of Glory
Black Panther Party chief of staff, facilitates the Huey P. Newton Foundation.

harpist from the hood, with a voice from heaven.

Elliott Bey,
keyboard master, director of Recovery Theatre East, Philadelphia.

Tarika Lewis
Violinist, first female member of the Black Panther Party. Performs with John Handy and Destiny's band of Angels.

Al Young,
Drowning In the Sea of Love
Poet, novelist, one of the members of the West Coast Black Arts Movement.

Lonnie Dewitt, In the Car

His book addresses issues affecting the California Department of Corrections and other agencies.

Ayodele Nzinga
, Walden House Suite
Actress, director, poet, associate director of Recovery Theatre.

Everett Hoagland, Here: New and Selected Poems
Teaches at UMASS, Dartmouth. This volume offers thirty years of his best published poems plus new work.

Dr. Kwasi Harris
, Readings in Black Political Economy
Dr. Harris is professor in political science at San Jose State University.

Spencer Moon, Reel Black Talk
Spencer's book discusses blacks in the movie industry.

Sam Hamod, Islam in the World Today
Sam is an internationally known poet and scholar on Islam.

Rudolph Lewis
, founder of NathanielTurner.Com
One of best websites on the Internet for Black literature.

Sam Anderson,
Black Holocaust for Beginners
Founding member of the Black Panther Party in New York, Sam co-edited the award winning anthology In Defense of Mumia.

Charlie Walker, America Is Still the Place
"In January I was broke. In February I made five million dollars." Charlie tells us how to do for self and be free.

Kalamu Ya Salaam
, The Magic of Juju
Kalamu is one of the founders of Black Arts South.

Tacuma King,
Master drummer, multi-instrumentalist, member of Destiny's band of Angels.

Davey D, legend of hip hop culture, DJ and MC. Listen to him on Hard Knock radio, KPFA Berkeley.

Greg Bridges,
host of spoken word at Oakland's Jahva House, DJ on KPFA and KCSM radio.

Suzzette Celeste, MSW, MPA,  chair, Recovery Theatre, dancer, practitioner at East Bay Church of Religious Science.

Geoffrey Grier, associate director Recovery Theatre San Francisco, actor, Treatment on Demand Council.

Dr. Salat Townsend,
actor,  associate director Recovery Theatre Sacramento

Raynetta Rayzetta, dancer, chief choreographer of Marvin X's poetry.

Keith Crawford,
promoter, associate of Recovery Theatre.

Leah Thomas,
writer, Mentor Project, planning advisor to Marvin X.

Ptah Allah-El (Tracy Mitchell),
writer, Journal of Black Studies at San Francisco State University. Videographer for Recovery Theatre, filmed video version of One Day In the Life, coordinator of filming for the video Kings and Queens of Black Consciousness by Marvin X.

Duncan Barber (Rafiq), cofounder of Black Arts West Theatre, SF

Hillary Broadus (Abdullah), cofounder of Black Arts West Theatre, SF

Emory Douglas, Black Panther Minister of Culture. Emory was part of the Black Arts Movement  (came to Black House) and still is today.

*   *   *   *   *'s 25 Best Selling Books



#1 - Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark
#2 - Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree
#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
#4 - Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper
#5 - Stackin' Paper 2 Genesis' Payback by Joy King
#6 - Thug Lovin' (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark
#7 - When I Get Where I'm Going by Cheryl Robinson
#8 - Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#9 - The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 - Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 - Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 - Don't Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 - For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 - For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 - Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 - The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 - Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 - Purple Panties: An Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 - Stackin' Paper by Joy King

#20 - Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 - The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 - Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 - Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 - I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter


#1 - Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable
#2 - Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
#3 - Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane
#4 - Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper
#5 - Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant
#6 - Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey
#7 - The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight
#8 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#9 - The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 - John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 - Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 -The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 - The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 - The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 - Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can't Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 - Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 - Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 - A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 - John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 - Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino
#23 - Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul by Tom Lagana
#24 - 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 - Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

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Salvage the Bones

A Novel by Jesmyn Ward

On one level, Salvage the Bones is a simple story about a poor black family that’s about to be trashed by one of the most deadly hurricanes in U.S. history. What makes the novel so powerful, though, is the way Ward winds private passions with that menace gathering force out in the Gulf of Mexico. Without a hint of pretension, in the simple lives of these poor people living among chickens and abandoned cars, she evokes the tenacious love and desperation of classical tragedy. The force that pushes back against Katrina’s inexorable winds is the voice of Ward’s narrator, a 14-year-old girl named Esch, the only daughter among four siblings. Precocious, passionate and sensitive, she speaks almost entirely in phrases soaked in her family’s raw land. Everything here is gritty, loamy and alive, as though the very soil were animated. Her brother’s “blood smells like wet hot earth after summer rain. . . . His scalp looks like fresh turned dirt.” Her father’s hands “are like gravel,” while her own hand “slides through his grip like a wet fish,” and a handsome boy’s “muscles jabbered like chickens.” Admittedly, Ward can push so hard on this simile-obsessed style that her paragraphs risk sounding like a compost heap, but this isn’t usually just metaphor for metaphor’s sake. She conveys something fundamental about Esch’s fluid state of mind: her figurative sense of the world in which all things correspond and connect. She and her brothers live in a ramshackle house steeped in grief since their mother died giving birth to her last child. . . . What remains, what’s salvaged, is something indomitable in these tough siblings, the strength of their love, the permanence of their devotion.—WashingtonPost

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The Looting of America: How Wall Street's Game of Fantasy Finance

Destroyed Our Jobs, Pensions, and Prosperity—and What We Can Do About It

By Les Leopold

How could the best and brightest (and most highly paid) in finance crash the global economy and then get us to bail them out as well? What caused this mess in the first place? Housing? Greed? Dumb politicians? What can Main Street do about it? In The Looting of America, Leopold debunks the prevailing media myths that blame low-income home buyers who got in over their heads, people who ran up too much credit-card debt, and government interference with free markets. Instead, readers will discover how Wall Street undermined itself and the rest of the economy by playing and losing at a highly lucrative and dangerous game of fantasy finance. He also asks some tough questions:  Why did Americans let the gap between workers' wages and executive compensation grow so large? Why did we fail to realize that the excess money in those executives' pockets was fueling casino-style investment schemes? Why did we buy the notion that too-good-to-be-true financial products that no one could even understand would somehow form the backbone of America's new, postindustrial economy? How do we make sure we never give our wages away to gamblers again? And what can we do to get our money back? In this page-turning narrative (no background in finance required) Leopold tells the story of how we fell victim to Wall Street's exotic financial products. Readers learn how even school districts were taken in by "innovative" products like collateralized debt obligations, better known as CDOs, and how they sucked trillions of dollars from the global economy when they failed. They'll also learn what average Americans can do to ensure that fantasy finance never rules our economy again. The Economy

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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Negro Digest / Black World

Browse all issues

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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery / George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

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ChickenBones Store (Books, DVDs, Music, and more)






update 31 January 2012




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Related files: Tenderloin Report  The San Francisco Tenderloin Book Fair