The Socratic/Prophetic Traditions
“How do you straighten your back up? How do you tell the truth? How do you bear witness? How do you organize? How do you mobilize? How do you generate forms of resistance and resiliency in the face of some very, very ugly forms of terror and trauma and stigma?” Activist/Scholar Cornel West asks these fundamental questions. And he takes inspiration and guidance from the prophetic tradition of ideas and images that have historically helped oppressed people develop the will and the means for taking action against their oppressors. Wedding that tradition with the Socratic legacy of Ancient Greece of seeking the truth by challenging assumptions and raising the most difficult questions is a powerful formula for achieving freedom and emancipation.
Cornel West is Professor of the Practice of Public Philosophy at Harvard. He has been called “the preeminent African American intellectual of his generation.” With his preacher-like cadences and passionate delivery, he is much in demand as a speaker. Among his many books are Race Matters, The Rich and the Rest of Us and Black Prophetic Fire.