November 9, 2008


Black is not a color... it is beginning to dawn upon our generation. There are shades of blackness that define us as a human race that constantly get defined and redefined as part of political processes that shape our culture and our perceptions of us and the 'others'... Jean Paul Sartre wrote in 1944: "l'enfer, c'est les autres" (The ' other' is hell), in "No Exit " however, our generation's quest is not to find an exit but to open doors.... Doors to perception and change.... Change is fueled by 'blackness' not as a perceived tool but as what defines the collective contemporary consciousness in the 21st century. We are ready to define the 'otherness' by redefining ourselves as a human race - represented not as a 'crowd' but as an individual consciousness that contributes to the larger 'us' as a collective culture - We do not 'exit' not because of the fear of the unknown, but because of what can be attributed (as in Garcin's desire in the play by Sartre) for validation that he is not a coward - each one of us is not a crowd.

The ‘otherness’ is now new ‘blackness ’….. Blackness used to be defined as the degree to which an individual, regardless of their ethnic background, is sympathetic to or a part of the mainstream African-American culture. But now, that is being put into another context and being redefined as an almost ‘colorless’ blackness under globalizaion and changing definitions of mariginalization. Blackness at times, is a brand… as presented to us by the media. It is not merely a political tool, but it is also a process that transcends color, race, ethnicity or intellectual orientation. It is at once expressed as power and powerlessness as strength – epitomized by language and its use. It is visual and pure blindness simultaneously.


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