The Fire Next Time By James Baldwin Essay

The Fire Next Time By James Baldwin Essay

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James Baldwin was an influential activist in the Civil Rights Movement and also became know as one of the most prominent African American intellectuals of twenty centuries. Between Martin Luther King Jr non-violent views on integration and Malcom X radical views, there in middle lies James Baldwin ideals a mix of the two. In his book The Fire Next Time, James Baldwin analyses the position of blacks in America a century after the Emancipation Proclamation which supposedly gave blacks their freedom. He uses the essay “My Dungeon Shook” as a plea to his nephew the importance of acceptance and integration. Through the essay “Down At The Cross” to provides readers with personal experiences about the relationship between religion and race that allowed white people to see how racism and oppression made life for blacks. Along with Baldwin’s plea for social and political integration, Baldwin believes in hope and brotherhood, just as Dr. Martin Luther King. Baldwin suggests the only way for which both Negros and white American must transcend from the past an accept it in order to be release from it.
Baldwin was an intelligent man who realized that without acceptance and love for all the issues between black and whites will forever exist. Like Dr. Martin Luther kind Baldwin believe that the only way to improve blacks social position was to accept what the white had did and integrate peacefully. Within his letter to his nephew he explains how the bitterness of his father lead him to suffer a terrible life he states “he was defeated long before he died because, at the bottom of his heart, he really believe what white people said about him” (Baldwin, pg. 4). Baldwin explains how it is none other than the white men of this country who have put t...


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...hence you came, there is really no limit to where you can go (Baldwin, pg.7) Baldwin very much like Dr. Martin Luther King was very hopeful that black and white could integrate and become one he explain how t “ black and the white, deeply need each other here if we are really to become a nation- if we really, that is, to achieve out identity, our maturity, as men and women” (Baldwin, pg. 97) Although deep down in his heart he new the only way for America and the people living here to become one was to let go of the past and expand their perception on both sides. However, he knew America was not ready as he states” as long as we in the West place on color the value that we do, we make it impossible for the great unwashed to consolidate themselves according to any other principle. Color is not a human or personal reality; it is a political reality” (Baldwin, pg.104).
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