Soniah Kamal

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'Islam is not Pakistan's religion; Marriage is'

Saturday, February 23, 2008

The Sacred Place: a novel by Daniel Black

Daniel Black's excellent novel 'The Sacred Place' is based on the 1955 racial murder of fourteen year old Emmett Till. Here's a quote from Black's novel:

"How arrogant it is, Jeremiah thought, for people to expect a Black man to remain humble when he's contantly being downtrodden. He would have to be Jesus to manage that kind of nonviolent forgiveness, and even then Jeremiah wasn't sure he admired such meekness. In the end, it always meant being trampled upon in the service of some higher principle in which, obviously, only the oppressed believe. Righteousness had not borne the fruit Jeremiah's ancestors promised it would, and, for the time being he simply wanted to win. Just once. He wanted the thrill of victory, the recognition by his enemies that he had beaten them, and the life of of children to prove it. Others had warned that God's wrath would visit itself upon him if he exacted justice on his own terms, so, trying not to anger an all powerful God, Jeremiah had surrendered to a non-confrontational mode of resistance until the day Cecil and the Cuthbert boys tried to take his grandson away. After then, Jeremiah determined that God would have to so whatever God was going to do because apparently his people had never considered that righteousness and whipping white folks' asses might be one and the same."

There is also a lovely monologue in the novel about what a relief it is to take off a damn bra at the end of a long day, or any time of the day.


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