Yuri Prasad

Selective Memories

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Review of 'The Majestic', director Frank Darabont

In the US in the 1950s thousands of actors, film-makers, writers and technicians had their lives and livelihoods destroyed by an anti-Communist witchhunt. In an atmosphere of mutual suspicion, many of those accused of Communist sympathies named their friends in order to avoid being blacklisted themselves. The studios willingly joined the frenzy, passing on the names of longstanding staff who then had to face the inquisition. Hollywood's cooperation with the show trials has been a shame from which it has tried to make amends on many occasions. 'The Majestic' is its latest attempt.

Mekin Sense Outta Nansense

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Linton Kwesi Johnson spoke to Yuri Prasad about poetry, music and the fight against racism.

What was it like to be a poet and a black political activist in the 1970s? How did the two come together and what kind of issues did you take up?

I came to poetry via politics. I discovered black literature as a consequence of my involvement in the Black Panther movement. We never came across any black literature or literature about blacks at school. When we did history--we did British history, we never did anything about slavery.


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