By William L. Van Deburg
In Black Camelot, William Van Deburg examines the dynamic upward thrust of those new black champions, the social and old contexts within which they flourished, and their robust effect at the African-American community.
"Van Deburg manages the enviable feat of writing with aptitude inside of a standardized educational framework, protecting politics, social matters and leisure with equivalent aplomb."—Jonathan Pearl, Jazz Times
"[A] interesting, thorough account of ways African-American icons of the Sixties and ’70s have replaced the process American heritage. . . . An in-depth, even-tempered research. . . . Van Deburg’s witty, vigorous and regularly grounded kind entertains whereas it instructs."—Publishers Weekly
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Extra info for Black Camelot: African-American Culture Heroes in Their Times, 1960-1980
Todate, their contributions to the Black Revolution and to the continuing vitality of the American spirit have been less than adequately recognized or thoroughly studied. Black culture heroes possessed a full complement of the qualities for which John Kennedy was cherished. As standard-bearers for the modern-day heroic, they offered their followers both entertainment and ego enhancement. They were a source of in-group identity and provided an avenue to intergroup understanding. As the mainstream culture absorbed, adopted, modified, and mimicked the deeds and style of black heroes, the cultural void within society and between groups grew a little smaller.
Lo As one might expect, the Anglo-Saxon’s heroes shared these unfortunate attributes. They, too, had deified Self and adopted “kill or be killed” and “might makes right” as behavioral watchwords. With “moral obtuseness and refined brutality,” these soldiers and strong men had advanced Western civilization by imperialism and slavery. Theirs, said Du Bois, was the “cool logic of the Club”-individualism gone berserk, might transformed into the most sacred right at the expense of human brotherhood.
Branch of the AngloSaxon family tree was said to be horribly diseased. Its contamination of American culture was in an advanced, critical stage. Indeed, to Du Bois, the term “Anglo-Saxon” (or “Teuton”) stood for all that was wrong with contemporary society. They always seemed to be preoccupied with war or the preparation for war. When not directly engaged in conquest for commerce’s sake, their energies were expended in creating a drab, dehumanizing, domestic workplace that was capable of sapping even the most vibrant life force.
Black Camelot: African-American Culture Heroes in Their Times, 1960-1980 by William L. Van Deburg
Categories: African American Studies