Neal’s chapter 2 focuses on the Black Public Sphere during an era of brutal repression.
After completing this assignment, students should be able to
- Recognize the recordings listed below based on a 10-15 second clip.
- Summarize the trajectory within the Black public sphere that Neal traces via Marvin Gaye’s “trilogy”: “What’s Going On,” “Trouble Man,” and “Let’s Get it On.”
- Summarize Neal’s argument about the importance of live recordings in this era.
- Identify and explain the importance of COINTELPRO.
- Identify the techniques used by COINTELPRO against activists, including “black-jacketing.”
- Identify Fred Hampton and William O’Neal.
- Paraphrase and explain this analysis of “What’s Going On”:
The genius of Gaye’s work is that by mimicking the diversity of communal voices, he popularized a dominant black social paradigm, precisely at the moment when communal relations within such a paradigm were increasingly fractured and disjointed” (64).
- Summarize Neal’s argument about the “narrative silence” of “Trouble Man.”
- Summarize Neal’s argument about the reasons that Brand Nubian was drawn to “Trouble Man.”
- Summarize Paul Gilroy’s point about the political resonance of blaxploitation’s “amplified and exaggerated masculinity” (70).
- Explain the significance of women artists’ “willingness to articulate the rich diversity of human emotions within black popular culture” (75).
- Summarize the parallel Neal draws between Black feminist fiction and popular musical artists.
- Neal, “From Protest to Climax: Black Power, State Repression, and Black Communities of Resistance”
- Lecture Slides: The Black Public Sphere in Transition
- Video Lecture Slides: The Black Public Sphere in Transition (youtube.com)
Listening (on YouTube)
- What’s Going On (Marvin Gaye, 1971)
- Inner City Blues (Marvin Gaye, 1971)
- Trouble Man (Marvin Gaye, 1972)
- Let’s Get it On (Marvin Gaye, 1973)
- Meaning of the 5% (Brand Nubian, 1993)
- Hypnotized (Linda Jones, 1969)
- Walk Tall (Cannonball Adderley Quintet, 1969)
- Country Preacher (Cannonball Adderley Quintet, 1969)
- The Ghetto (Donny Hathaway, 1972)
- Precious Lord, Take My Hand/You’ve Got A Friend (Aretha Franklin, 1972)
- Protest to Climax