Changjiang Liu Essay 2

1476 Words6 Pages
Changjiang Liu
AMST 252
Essay 2
Professor Francille Rusan Wilson
TA: Maytha Alhassen

When talking about the perspective of Assata Shakur, we always remember her radical style. Assata felt the power of oppression when she was a child. As she narrated in her autobiography, there was a zoo near her grandparents’ home. Everyday she would beg, plead, whine and nag her grandmother to take her to the zoo. However, one day her grandmother told her that they were not allowed to enter the zoo because they were black (Shakur 27). This childhood memory left a deep impression of segregation on Assata. When discussing the origin of Assata’s radicalness, we can conclude that her childhood memory was one important reason.
Shakur saw
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In her opinion, understanding history helps African Americans to understand the meaning and value of their movement. Once people know their goals and values by history, they know why they take part in the movement and what should they do. Comparing Assata’s political view with other nationalists and feminists, we can find some similarities and some of Assata’s distinctiveness.
Although Malcolm X is also considered as a radical activist, the extent of his radicalness is quite small compared with Assata Shakur. They both believed that government would not protect African Americans at all. As Malcolm X referred in his speech The Ballot or The Bullet:“ You and I in America are faced not with a segregationist conspiracy, we are faced with a government conspiracy” (Marable & Mullings 407). Similar to Assata’s perspective that politicians are liars, Malcolm X also thought that Black people could not rely on government. In the opinion of Assata and Malcolm X, black people must do something by themselves in order to live a better life. However, Malcolm X didn’t engage in terrorism like Assata did. He thought that African Americans didn’t need to attack white people and police. Malcolm would like to see white people as untrustworthy competitors. In his opinion, African Americans should understand the importance of controlling the economy of their community (Marable & Mullings 410).

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