Paul Cobb’s Vision for the 50th Anniversary Black Arts Movement


As the Bay Area prepares for the 50th Anniversary of the Black Arts Movement (BAM), the most radical artistic and literary movement in American history, Paul Cobb gave fellow writer and festival producer Marvin X his vision for the celebration.

“My interest is putting books in the hands of young men and women who attend this celebration,” Cobb said. “I said long ago, Crack a book before you’re booked for Crack, so if we focus on high risk young people, lifting their literacy and literary pursuits, I will support this BAM celebration. Otherwise, I don’t have time to sit listening to old men and women pontificate about revolution.”

He added, “I will help raise money for books, not for honoraria for speakers.”

Agreeing with his childhood friend from West Oakland, Marvin X said, “When Paul is right, I acknowledge this. I consider him part of the progressive bourgeoisie. He has been more consistent than some of my so-called revolutionary friends and comrades. He usually does what he says.”

“In the past, he has put his newspapers at the disposal of my radical projects, such as the Tenderloin Black Radical Book Fair we produced in 2004,” Marvin X continued.

Through a series of articles in The Post, Cobb promoted the book fair and will do the same with the BAM celebration.

“We think a book fair must be part of the BAM celebration. We know Dr. Nathan Hare’s Black Think Tank Books and my Black Bird Press will arrange for books to be given to our youth to raise their level of consciousness. We call upon other authors and publishers to do the same,” said Marvin X.

For more information on the 50th Anniversary of the Black Arts Movement, contact Marvin X at @[email protected] or (510) 200-4164.


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