Walter Mosley: Workin' on the Chain Gang (USA 2006)
From the Publisher:
Praise for Workin' on the Chain Gang:
"... clear-sighted ... Mosley offers chain-breaking ideas..."
"[A] thoroughly potent dismantling of Yanqui capitalism, the media, and the entertainment business, and at the same time a celebration of rebellion, truth as a tool for emancipation, and much else besides..."
"Workin' on the Chain Gang excels at expressing feelings of ennui that transcend race... beautiful language and penetrating insights into the necessity of confronting the past."
"Mosley eloquently examines what liberation from consumer capitalism might look like... readers receptive to a progressive critique of the religion of the market will value Mosley's creative contribution."
Walter Mosley's most recent essay collection is Life Out of Context, published in 2006. He is the best-selling author of the science fiction novel Blue Light, five critically acclaimed mysteries featuring Easy Rawlins, the blues novel RL's Dream, a finalist for the NAACP Award in Fiction, and winner of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association's Literary Award. His books have been translated into twenty languages. He lives in New York.
Clyde Taylor is Professor of Africana Studies at NYU's Gallatin School and author of The Mask of Art: Breaking the Aesthetic Contract-- Film and Literature.
Walter Mosley: Workin' on the Chain Gang. Shaking off the Dead Hand of History. Foreword by Clyde Taylor. University of Michigan Press, ISBN: 0472031988 (December, 2006), 118 p., $15.95.
Walter Mosley: Workin' on the Chain Gang (USA 2000)
From the Publisher:
Far from being a cause for celebration, the millennium, Mosley argues fiercely, should be the occasion for a frank reckoning with the real state of our society. We have the power to end starvation, but one-third of our children live in poverty. Our politics have degenerated into a multimillion-dollar game show ruled by two indistinguishable monopolies. We drug ourselves with television, sports, sex, apathy, and obsession with celebrity, while our cities rot and violence erupts in our schools.
Why is this happening? Because we have allowed ourselves to be made into property, owned and controlled by an economic system in which "value" means only profit. "Some of us are cogs in the economic machine," writes Mosley, "others are ghosts, but it is the machine, not race or gender or even nationality, that drives us."
But each one of us can work toward breaking off these chains. First by recognizing the truth of our history -- a history that is crucially informed by the black experience. Second by beginning to free ourselves from the noise, the often shallow, diverting entertainments, and an all-consuming economic system. The nation and its potentials are ours to command, but only if we work, individually and collectively, to cast off the chains of yesterday's politics and seize the freedoms that the future holds.
Angry, original, and fearlessly honest, Workin' on the Chain Gang is a powerful examination of the American economic and political machine. No matter what your race, gender, politics, or beliefs, this is a book that will profoundly alter the way you think -- and the way you act.
Walter Mosley: Workin' on the Chain Gang. Shaking off the Dead Hand of History. Ballantine, ISBN: 0345430697 (January, 2000), 118 p., $17.95.