http://www.archive.org/stream/BuildingBridgesRadioRedSeasWithGeraldHorne play stream
Red Seas: Ferdinand Smith & Radical Black Sailors in the
United States & Jamaica
Gerald Horne, Prof. of History and African-American studies at the
University of Houston
During the heyday of the U.S. & international labor movements in
the 1930s and '40s. Ferdinand Smith, the Jamaican-born co-
founder and second-in-command of the National Maritime Union,
stands out as one of the most "if not the most" powerful black
labor leaders in the United States. Smith's active membership in
the Communist Party, however, coupled with his bold labor
radicalism & shaky immigration status, brought him under
continual surveillance by U.S. authorities, especially during the
red Scare in the '50s. Smith was eventually deported to his
homeland of Jamaica, where he continued his radical labor and
political organizing until his death in 1961. Horne draws on Smith's
life to make insightful connections between labor radicalism & the
Civil Rights Movement "demonstrating that the gains of the latter
were propelled by the former & undermined by anticommunism".
Moreover, Red Seas uncovers the little-known experiences of black
sailors & the contribution to the struggle for labor and civil rights,
the history of the Communist Party & its black members, and the
significant dimension of Jamaican labor & political radicalism.
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Our beat is the labor front, broadly defined, both geographically and conceptually. We examine the world of work and workers on the job as well as where they live. We examine the issues that affect their everyday lives, with a particular sensitivity towards human rights abuses, environmental concerns and the U.S. drive for global domination. We record their global struggles and provide analysis of their efforts to empower themselves and transform society to provide greater democratic, human, social, political and economic rights. Each program consists of feature stories, generally interviews, within a historical context, often accompanied by sound from demonstrations, rallies or conferences, and complemented and enhanced by poetry and instrumental or vocal -- people's culture.
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