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W.A.R. Stories: Walter Anthony Rodney FILM SCREENING – Tonight in NYC!

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As I first mentioned HERE a few weeks ago, a much-needed documentary on noted Guyanese activist and historian, Dr. Walter Rodney, is showing tonight at The Brecht Forum (451 West Street (between Bank & Bethune Sts., NY, NY 10014 – right off the West Side Hwy) at 7:30pm with a discussion on the film to follow. If you can, come out and support this film.

Directed by Clairmont Chung, W.A.R. Stories, as quoted directly from the screening host’s website, tells:

[A] story of a man who dedicated his life, and ultimately, gave his life in the struggle for equal rights and justice. He did so through his considerable intellectual gifts and actual grassroots involvement everywhere he went. The people who knew him weave a tale of how they related to him and him them. In the process we see the growth of their friend, his ideology and how that changed over the years from his coming of age in racially divided Guyana through the cold war, the Black Power Movement, Pan-Africanism, Caribbean independence, and the idea of self emancipation.

It’s about the influence of places on him and him on places as evidenced by the ‘Rodney riots’ of 1968 in Kingston, Jamaica, his role in Southern Africa’s struggle for independence and, finally, civil rebellion in Guyana where his life ended just a block from his birth-home. It’s a film about us: all of us. In the film, Dr. Robert Hill of UCLA described the riots as having lit a spark that now defines modern political history in the region. Dr. Rupert Lewis, author of Walter Rodney’s Intellectual and Political Thought, said about the riots, “..it was as if something was released in Jamaica, and in Kingston, at the time. The consequence of which was the university campus was sealed of by security forces for three weeks”.

The documentary features luminaries from every continent. These include publisher, Walter Bgoya of Tanzania, a personal friend and confidant of former President Julius Nyerere, Dr. Clive Thomas, Dr. Rex Nettleford, Dr. Leith Mullings, Amiri Baraka and Dr. Rodney’s daughter, Asha Rodney.

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