Episode 20: Black Capitalism or, I’m a Business, Man
A close up of an eye from a $100 bill. Photo by Vladislav Reshetnyak from Pexels
“Gentrify your own ‘hood before these people do it/Claim eminent domain and have your people move in/ That’s a small glimpse into what Nipsey was doing/ For anybody still confused as to what he was doing /The neighborhood designed to keep us trapped. /They red-lined it so property declines if you live by blacks /They depress the asset then take the property back. /It’s a ruthless but a genius plan, in fact….”-Jay-Z, performing at Webster Hall, NYC on 26 July 2019
This is a long one, and we have a lot of… thoughts, and feelings. So many feelings. Listen in as we talk about Reconstruction, economic anxiety, Booker T. Washington, shadow economies, entrepreneurship, space travel, Kamala Harris’s student loan proposal, self-sufficiency vs. self determination, and much more. Capitalism alone is a complex topic, as is Black people’s relationship with it. Consider this episode as a way of laying the groundwork for discussions that we will likely return to off and on in future episodes.
Mentioned on the show
A note before the show notes proper: Yes, it’s Dooboyz and not Doobwah. We regret the misstatement, which can be charged to late in the day fatigue. Speaking of both W.E.B Du Bois and economics, if you have some free time, it’s well worth checking out his painted data visualizations of Black American life in 1900. You can also read more about them here .
Can we turn economic disenfranchisement into a force for good? This article from Black Enterprise thinks so
More interesting links:
IndiVisible, a joint exhibit of the Museum of the American Indian and the National Museum of African American History traces the history of African-Native American people in the US, and of the intersections of Black and Indigenous histories more generally.
The Black/Land Project is a collective that collects and considers stories about Black people and land in North America. If you’re in for a longer, slightly more dense read that contains a lot of interesting personal stories and Black and Indigenous people talking about relationships with land, settler states, and one another, Not Nowhere: Collaborating on Self-Same Land is a great place to start.