i am not your negro
stunning. powerful. artistic.
I just saw I Am Not Your Negro by Raoul Peck at E Street Cinema. There are so many things in the film that moved me. James Baldwin, of course. I was moved by the beauty, anger and love that emanated from him, and his intellect and conviction.
Peck's narrative has given me much to think about. From the vantage point of dc1968, I am even more convinced that my decision to critique the hyper focus on "the riots" is the right one. at the same time, it has pushed me to think about how I will narrate the first week after King's assassination. What images will I use? How will I frame those days?
I am also struck by the wealth and breadth of images and videos that I had never seen before. Visuality really shapes perception, particularly when the same images are used over and over again.
At the same time, Peck illustrated how over-circulated images can be reframed.
For example, the image of the older black woman being abused by several white police officers, one of whom has his knee in her neck.
For example, the image of the black female teen who was aggressively smacked/pushed by a white police officer.
For example, the video of Rodney King being criminally abused by multiple white police officers.
With this film, it did not feel rote or voyeuristic to watch these. I felt like I saw the full, immediate and historical brutality of them for the first time.
take a deep breath.