« on: June 08, 2007, 05:53:01 PM »
Negroes know about each other what can here be called family secrets, and this means that one negro, if he wishes, can knock the others hustle - can give his game away. It is still not possible to overstate the price a Negro pays to climb out of obscurity - for it is a particular price, involved with being a negro; and the great wounds, gouges, amputations, losses, scars, endured in such a journey cannot be calculated. But even this is not the worst of it, since he is really dealing with two hierarchies, one white and one black, the latter modeled on the former. The higher he rises, the less is his journey worth, since (unless he is extremely energetic and anarchic, a genuinely "bad n-word" in the most positive sense of the term) all he can possibly find himself exposed to is the grim emptiness of the white world-which does not live by the standards it uses to victimize him- and the even more ghastly emptiness of black people who wish they were white. Therefore, one "exceptional" Negro watches another "exceptional" Negro in order to find out if he knows how vastly successful and bitterly funny the hoax has been. Alliances, in the great cocktail party of the white man's world, are formed, almost purely, on this basis, for if both of you can laugh, you have alot to laugh about. On the other hand, if only one of you can laugh, one of you, ineveitably, is laughing at the other."
Nobody Knows My Name
Any comments. Antiquated? Still relavent? Was Jimmy tripping? Personally, I would love to grow up and be this "bad ass n-word" he speaks of..