Essay about The Black Arts Movement By Gil Scott Heron

948 Words Sep 24th, 2015 4 Pages
Leaders of the Black Arts Movement believed that in order for change to occur, African-Americans would need to stand up for themselves and create a separate Black culture. Larry Neal explores this objective in depth, in his piece, The Black Arts Movement. Gil Scott-Heron further promotes the message in his famous poem, The Revolution Will Not Be Televised. As evidenced in both of these works, Black culture would need to overtake White culture in order to overturn the oppressive society of the time.
The importance of nationhood empowered the African-American community to attempt to destroy White culture and create their own Black culture. At the time, many thought that there were two separate spirits in America, a Black spirit and a White spirit. The White spirit dominated and ruled the nation while the Black spirit rarely had any fair impact or voice in society. As part of the Black Arts Movement, African-American writers re-evaluated the Western atheistic and felt the need to develop a “Black aesthetic.” Those who believed in the Black aesthetic, including Neal, thought, “Western aesthetic has run its course: it is impossible to construct anything meaningful within its decaying structure” (Neal 1). African-Americans had little hope in succeeding in this White society because White culture was so powerful and oppressive. In order to fix this unjust civilization, African-Americans would to need eliminate White culture and “define the world in their own terms” (1). Instead…

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