I Am Not Your Negro: A Companion Edition to the Documentary Film Directed by Raoul Peck

by James Baldwin

Other authorsRaoul Peck (Compiler)
Paper Book, 2017

Status

Available

Publication

New York : Vintage Books, 2017.

Description

Transcript of the documentary film, I am not your negro, by Raoul Peck composed of unpublished and published writings, interviews, and letters by James Baldwin on the subject of racism in America.

User reviews

LibraryThing member kidzdoc
The companion book to the documentary of the same name is based largely on notes from James Baldwin's non-fiction work "Remember This House", which he began writing in 1979 but did not finish before his death in 1987. Baldwin's aim in writing this book was to tell the story of the United States through the lives of three seminal figures in the Civil Rights Movement, all of whom were close friends of his: Medgar Evers, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr., who were assassinated in 1963, 1965 and 1968, respectively. In this book, Baldwin's excerpted words from "Remember This House" are converted into poetic form, which lends them greater power. Interspersed between these "poems" are portions of past speeches and interviews, photographs that accompany the text, and a limited number of current references, most notably the sequence that consists of apologies by Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, Anthony Weiner, the former US congressman who was forced to step down after sexual misconduct and was further disgraced by additional misbehaviors, Thomas Jackson, the former chief of police of Ferguson, Missouri, and others.

Raoul Peck's compilation does a superb service in bringing James Baldwin's unflinching words to light for those of us who revere him, and to newer audiences who are unfamiliar with him and the searing power of his words. I look forward to seeing the documentary, and to returning to this excellent compilation.
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LibraryThing member jessibud2
I first heard of it when I listened to an excellent interview on CBC radio with the filmmaker, Raoul Peck.

Synopsis from the imdb site: "In 1979, James Baldwin wrote a letter to his literary agent describing his next project, "Remember This House." The book was to be a revolutionary, personal account of the lives and assassinations of three of his close friends: Medgar Evers, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. At the time of Baldwin's death in 1987, he left behind only 30 completed pages of this manuscript. Filmmaker Raoul Peck envisions the book James Baldwin never finished."

I am really glad to have read this book before seeing the film. Peck writes an introduction, explaining how and why he came to put this film together, and how he came to have possession of the 30 pages of notes that were the beginning of that final book Baldwin didn't live to complete. The book is barely 100 pages but it packs so much power into it, as much of Baldwin's works did. And it is startling how timely his words still are today, maybe even more so than one would expect. And that is not a good thing...

"Not everything that is faced can be changed; but nothing can be changed until it is faced."
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