Welcome to Bookmarker!

This is a personal project by @dellsystem. I built this to help me retain information from the books I'm reading.

Source code on GitHub (MIT license).

xiii

It’s fitting that Huey dedicated this book to Bobby Hutton, the first member to join the Party after Huey and Bobby Seale, and the first Black Panther to be killed: Bobby was just seventeen years old when, after a stand-off, police gunned down the unarmed youth as he surrendered. Huey was devastated by the murder but also clear-eyed enough to understand that a revolutionary is “a doomed man.” In other words, every revolutionary fighter by definition struggles against the power imbalance of the establishment, and the cost of this struggle is often paid with one’s own life. Huey coined the term “revolutionary suicide” to describe this phenomenon. Not to be confused with what he calls “reactionary suicide”—wherein a person kills himself in despair and helplessness—revolutionary suicide is infused with the possibility that one’s death will further the revolutionary cause. As Huey explains, “[I]t is better to oppose the forces that would drive me to self-murder than to endure them. Although I risk the likelihood of death, there is at least the possibility, if not the probability, of changing intolerable conditions. . . . Revolutionary suicide does not mean that I and my comrades have a death wish; it means just the opposite. We have such a strong desire to live with hope and human dignity that existence without them is impossible. When reactionary forces crush us, we move against these forces, even at the risk of death.” [...]

—p.xiii Introduction (ix) by Fredrika Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago

It’s fitting that Huey dedicated this book to Bobby Hutton, the first member to join the Party after Huey and Bobby Seale, and the first Black Panther to be killed: Bobby was just seventeen years old when, after a stand-off, police gunned down the unarmed youth as he surrendered. Huey was devastated by the murder but also clear-eyed enough to understand that a revolutionary is “a doomed man.” In other words, every revolutionary fighter by definition struggles against the power imbalance of the establishment, and the cost of this struggle is often paid with one’s own life. Huey coined the term “revolutionary suicide” to describe this phenomenon. Not to be confused with what he calls “reactionary suicide”—wherein a person kills himself in despair and helplessness—revolutionary suicide is infused with the possibility that one’s death will further the revolutionary cause. As Huey explains, “[I]t is better to oppose the forces that would drive me to self-murder than to endure them. Although I risk the likelihood of death, there is at least the possibility, if not the probability, of changing intolerable conditions. . . . Revolutionary suicide does not mean that I and my comrades have a death wish; it means just the opposite. We have such a strong desire to live with hope and human dignity that existence without them is impossible. When reactionary forces crush us, we move against these forces, even at the risk of death.” [...]

—p.xiii Introduction (ix) by Fredrika Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago
3

I do not think that life will change for the better without an assault on the Establishment, which goes on exploiting the wretched of the earth. This belief lies at the heart of the concept of revolutionary suicide. Thus it is better to oppose the forces that would drive me to self-murder than to endure them. Although I risk the likelihood of death, there is at least the possibility, if not the probability, of changing intolerable conditions. This possibility is important, because much in human existence is based upon hope without any real understanding of the odds. Indeed, we are all—Black and white alike—ill in the same way, mortally ill. But before we die, how shall we live? I say with hope and dignity; and if premature death is the result, that death has a meaning reactionary suicide can never have. It is the price of self-respect.

footnote after Establishment: The power structure, based on the economic infrastructure, propped up and reinforced by the media and all the secondary educational and cultural institutions.

—p.3 Revolutionary Suicide: The Way of Liberation (1) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago

I do not think that life will change for the better without an assault on the Establishment, which goes on exploiting the wretched of the earth. This belief lies at the heart of the concept of revolutionary suicide. Thus it is better to oppose the forces that would drive me to self-murder than to endure them. Although I risk the likelihood of death, there is at least the possibility, if not the probability, of changing intolerable conditions. This possibility is important, because much in human existence is based upon hope without any real understanding of the odds. Indeed, we are all—Black and white alike—ill in the same way, mortally ill. But before we die, how shall we live? I say with hope and dignity; and if premature death is the result, that death has a meaning reactionary suicide can never have. It is the price of self-respect.

footnote after Establishment: The power structure, based on the economic infrastructure, propped up and reinforced by the media and all the secondary educational and cultural institutions.

—p.3 Revolutionary Suicide: The Way of Liberation (1) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago
50

My high school diploma was a farce. When my friends and I graduated, we were ill-equipped to function in society, except at the bottom, even though the system said we were educated. Maybe they knew what they were doing, preparing us for the trash heap of society, where we would have to work long hours for low wages. They never realized how much they had actually educated me by teaching the necessity of resistance and the dignity of defiance. I was on my way to becoming a revolutionary.

—p.50 High School (45) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago

My high school diploma was a farce. When my friends and I graduated, we were ill-equipped to function in society, except at the bottom, even though the system said we were educated. Maybe they knew what they were doing, preparing us for the trash heap of society, where we would have to work long hours for low wages. They never realized how much they had actually educated me by teaching the necessity of resistance and the dignity of defiance. I was on my way to becoming a revolutionary.

—p.50 High School (45) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago
56

About two years before I completed high school, my inner life was plunged into a sea of confusion and turmoil that lasted until Bobby Seale and I organized the Black Panther Party. For four years I went through the kind of pain that comes when you are letting go of old beliefs and certainties and have nothing to take their place. This distress had begun earlier and was a result of contrasting and varying elements in my life. As I matured physically, the problems seemed more insoluble, the strain became greater; I felt adrift. I began to question everything about my life. There seemed no haven of security in anything I was doing or hoping to do.

I questioned my religious activities and my search for God. I questioned whether school was worth the effort. Most of all, I questioned what was happening in my own family and in the community around me. My father’s struggle with bills was common in many of the families of my comrades. He had worked hard all his life only to sink more deeply in debt. It seemed that no matter how hard he worked and sacrificed for his family, it led to more work. Things never became easier. I began to ask why this had happened to us and to everybody around us. Why could my father never get out of debt? If hard work brought success, why did we not see more success in the community? The people were certainly working hard. It seemed we were predestined to endless toil. We poor people never reached the point of having time to pursue the things we wanted. We had neither leisure time nor material goods. Not only did I want to know why this was so; I wanted to avoid a similar fate.

—p.56 Moving On (56) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago

About two years before I completed high school, my inner life was plunged into a sea of confusion and turmoil that lasted until Bobby Seale and I organized the Black Panther Party. For four years I went through the kind of pain that comes when you are letting go of old beliefs and certainties and have nothing to take their place. This distress had begun earlier and was a result of contrasting and varying elements in my life. As I matured physically, the problems seemed more insoluble, the strain became greater; I felt adrift. I began to question everything about my life. There seemed no haven of security in anything I was doing or hoping to do.

I questioned my religious activities and my search for God. I questioned whether school was worth the effort. Most of all, I questioned what was happening in my own family and in the community around me. My father’s struggle with bills was common in many of the families of my comrades. He had worked hard all his life only to sink more deeply in debt. It seemed that no matter how hard he worked and sacrificed for his family, it led to more work. Things never became easier. I began to ask why this had happened to us and to everybody around us. Why could my father never get out of debt? If hard work brought success, why did we not see more success in the community? The people were certainly working hard. It seemed we were predestined to endless toil. We poor people never reached the point of having time to pursue the things we wanted. We had neither leisure time nor material goods. Not only did I want to know why this was so; I wanted to avoid a similar fate.

—p.56 Moving On (56) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago
58

The struggle with religious faith is a difficult experience to describe because it involves many things that are either repressed earlier in life or not understood. In the process, the fears that are not related to religious beliefs are released. By then you no longer have any protection from your religion, and you have to start dealing with your dread. The real world closes in on you, cutting off traditional comforts like a simple prayer. Eventually, you, and you alone, have to deal with troubling questions. This always leads to anxiety. There is nothing, so you are free—and terrified.

—p.58 Moving On (56) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago

The struggle with religious faith is a difficult experience to describe because it involves many things that are either repressed earlier in life or not understood. In the process, the fears that are not related to religious beliefs are released. By then you no longer have any protection from your religion, and you have to start dealing with your dread. The real world closes in on you, cutting off traditional comforts like a simple prayer. Eventually, you, and you alone, have to deal with troubling questions. This always leads to anxiety. There is nothing, so you are free—and terrified.

—p.58 Moving On (56) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago
62

Maurice taught me a lesson that I try to apply to the Black Panther Party today. I dissuade Party members from putting down people who do not understand. Even people who are unenlightened and seemingly bourgeois should be answered in a polite way. Things should be explained to them as fully as possible. I was turned off by a person who did not want to talk to me because I was not important enough. Maurice just wanted to preach to the converted, who already agreed with him. I try to be cordial, because that way you win people over. You cannot win them over by drawing the line of demarcation, saying you are on this side and I am on the other; that shows a lack of consciousness. After the Black Panther Party was formed, I nearly fell into this error. I could not understand why people were blind to what I saw so clearly. Then I realized that their understanding had to be developed.

—p.62 College and the Afro-American Association (60) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago

Maurice taught me a lesson that I try to apply to the Black Panther Party today. I dissuade Party members from putting down people who do not understand. Even people who are unenlightened and seemingly bourgeois should be answered in a polite way. Things should be explained to them as fully as possible. I was turned off by a person who did not want to talk to me because I was not important enough. Maurice just wanted to preach to the converted, who already agreed with him. I try to be cordial, because that way you win people over. You cannot win them over by drawing the line of demarcation, saying you are on this side and I am on the other; that shows a lack of consciousness. After the Black Panther Party was formed, I nearly fell into this error. I could not understand why people were blind to what I saw so clearly. Then I realized that their understanding had to be developed.

—p.62 College and the Afro-American Association (60) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago
65

He offered the community solutions that solved nothing. I could have accepted this if he had been ignorant, but I believe he knew what he was doing. At least he knew what the popular position was. That is why I tell the Black Panther Party that we must never take a stand just because it is popular. We must analyze the situation objectively and take the logically correct position, even though it may be unpopular. If we are right in the dialectics of the situation, our position will prevail.

on Donald Warden of the Afro-American Association. love this

—p.65 College and the Afro-American Association (60) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago

He offered the community solutions that solved nothing. I could have accepted this if he had been ignorant, but I believe he knew what he was doing. At least he knew what the popular position was. That is why I tell the Black Panther Party that we must never take a stand just because it is popular. We must analyze the situation objectively and take the logically correct position, even though it may be unpopular. If we are right in the dialectics of the situation, our position will prevail.

on Donald Warden of the Afro-American Association. love this

—p.65 College and the Afro-American Association (60) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago
70

It was my studying and reading in college that led me to become a socialist. The transformation from a nationalist to a socialist was a slow one, although I was around a lot of Marxists. I even attended a few meetings of the Progressive Labor Party, but nothing was happening there, just a lot of talk and dogmatism, unrelated to the world I knew. I supported Castro all the way. I even accepted an invitation to visit Cuba and recruited others for the trip, but I never made it. When I presented my solutions to the problems of Black people, or when I expressed my philosophy, people said, “Well, isn’t that socialism?” Some of them were using the socialist label to put me down, but I figured that if this was socialism, then socialism must be a correct view. So I read more of the works of the socialists and began to see a strong similarity between my beliefs and theirs. My conversion was complete when I read the four volumes of Mao Tse-tung to learn more about the Chinese Revolution. It was my life plus independent reading that made me a socialist—nothing else.

I became convinced of the benefits of collectivism and a collectivist ideology. I also saw the link between racism and the economics of capitalism, although, despite the link, I recognized that it was necessary to separate the concepts in analyzing the general situation. In psychological terms, racism could continue to exist even after the economic problems that had created racism had been resolved. Never convinced that destroying capitalism would automatically destroy racism, I felt, however, that we could not destroy racism without wiping out its economic foundation. It was necessary to think much more creatively and independently about these complex interconnections.

—p.70 Learning (67) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago

It was my studying and reading in college that led me to become a socialist. The transformation from a nationalist to a socialist was a slow one, although I was around a lot of Marxists. I even attended a few meetings of the Progressive Labor Party, but nothing was happening there, just a lot of talk and dogmatism, unrelated to the world I knew. I supported Castro all the way. I even accepted an invitation to visit Cuba and recruited others for the trip, but I never made it. When I presented my solutions to the problems of Black people, or when I expressed my philosophy, people said, “Well, isn’t that socialism?” Some of them were using the socialist label to put me down, but I figured that if this was socialism, then socialism must be a correct view. So I read more of the works of the socialists and began to see a strong similarity between my beliefs and theirs. My conversion was complete when I read the four volumes of Mao Tse-tung to learn more about the Chinese Revolution. It was my life plus independent reading that made me a socialist—nothing else.

I became convinced of the benefits of collectivism and a collectivist ideology. I also saw the link between racism and the economics of capitalism, although, despite the link, I recognized that it was necessary to separate the concepts in analyzing the general situation. In psychological terms, racism could continue to exist even after the economic problems that had created racism had been resolved. Never convinced that destroying capitalism would automatically destroy racism, I felt, however, that we could not destroy racism without wiping out its economic foundation. It was necessary to think much more creatively and independently about these complex interconnections.

—p.70 Learning (67) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago
72

Back at the college, [...] others had begun to organize the West Coast branch of RAM, the Revolutionary Action Movement. They claimed to function as an underground movement, but instead of revolutionary action, they indulged in a lot of revolutionary talk, none of it underground. They were all college students, with bourgeois skills, who wrote a lot. Eventually, they became so infiltrated with agents that when an arrest was made, the police spent all their time showing each other their badges.

lol

—p.72 Learning (67) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago

Back at the college, [...] others had begun to organize the West Coast branch of RAM, the Revolutionary Action Movement. They claimed to function as an underground movement, but instead of revolutionary action, they indulged in a lot of revolutionary talk, none of it underground. They were all college students, with bourgeois skills, who wrote a lot. Eventually, they became so infiltrated with agents that when an arrest was made, the police spent all their time showing each other their badges.

lol

—p.72 Learning (67) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago
75

At Oakland City College many of the Blacks were working as hard as they could to become a part of the system; I could not relate to their goals. These brothers still believed in making it in the world. They talked about it loud and long, expressing the desire for families, houses, cars, and so forth. Even at that time I did not want those things. I wanted freedom, and possessions meant nonfreedom to me.

—p.75 The Brothers on the Block (74) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago

At Oakland City College many of the Blacks were working as hard as they could to become a part of the system; I could not relate to their goals. These brothers still believed in making it in the world. They talked about it loud and long, expressing the desire for families, houses, cars, and so forth. Even at that time I did not want those things. I wanted freedom, and possessions meant nonfreedom to me.

—p.75 The Brothers on the Block (74) by Huey P. Newton 5 months, 2 weeks ago