TNAR in New York



TNAR in New York

By Grace Lee Boggs

Michigan  Citizen,  April 24-30, 2011

 Last week TNAR co-author Scott Kurashige, veteran community activist and educator Kim Sherobbi, and I spent three days in New York City  talking about The Next American Revolution

 I had been reluctant to make the trip  because my mobility has declined so much over the last few months. Fortunately most of our engagements turned out to be only 15-20 blocks from our hotel in lower Manhattan,  So I sat in a wheelchair and Scott pushed it and me down New York’s  bumpy and busy sidewalks, while Kim walked alongside carrying my walker. We were an unusual trio.  But few people gave us a second look. We were just part of the city’s multicultural ambience.

 In all, we did nine appearances and interviews in three days: at a  New York University writing class and Graduate  Student  Conference, on Democracy Now,  PBS, WBAI, at the Brecht Forum,  and the Bluestocking Bookstore. 

 The sold-out  event at the Brecht Forum, where I had given my  Malcolm and Martin talk in 2007 (chapter 3 in TNAR) was especially wide-ranging.  Democracy Now host Amy Goodman graciously volunteered to field the questions and asked some of the most interesting ones herself.   

Legendary stage and screen actress Ruby Dee read the poem she had written and sent to Jimmy (with a pan of homemade gingerbread) as he was dying in 1993.  The poem is reprinted in Living for Change, page 286.    

Detroit Summer poet Angela Jones, now living in New York, performed her Dig. My millennial generation friends, Julie Rosier, Nyanza  Bandele, and Matthew  Birkhold shared stories of our interactions over the last few years..

Dan Vea recorded the various talks.  They are available at    You can listen to the WBAI interview at

 As I reflect on the meetings  in Michigan a few weeks ago and last week in New York,  it seems to me that a significant minority of Americans are eager to think, talk and read about the profound changes we and our world are undergoing at this time on the clock of the world. 

 What  does it take  to  make an American revolution in the 21st century?  Are the “from the ground up” activities to bring the neighbor back into the ‘hood and to grow not only our souls but our own food, instead of more jobs, consumer goods and war weapons the form that the revolution is taking in our time and in our country?

 These activities are already under way  especially in  Detroit, because our  de-industrialization has provided us with the space, ,the  place, the  necessity and the possibility to begin anew.

 It is all very exciting and rewarding.


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