Wrapping It Up

We do have a few odds and ends to clear up as a result of today’s discussion. First, I thought I heard Elizabeth mention something about blacks from Senegal in Nova Scotia. That was a new one for me, so I checked it out: as it turns out, there’s a fascinating set of stories behind Nova Scotia’s black population, including a number of black loyalists who fought for the British during the American Revolution. The Wikipedia article is here and worth a look.

Quite a few of you talked about the need to reinvigorate our long-neglected cities. A couple of relevant websites I mentioned during class: The Atlantic Magazine’s Cities site, full of good stuff about the state of cities around the world. Among that sites bloggers is Richard Florida, whose most recent book, The Great Reset: How the Post-Crash Economy Will Change the Way We Live and Work, makes the case for a redefinition of our economy and our cities.

While Roz and I were testing your endurance with our (unrehearsed! can you believe it?) rendition of My Girl, I mentioned a movie about the Motown Records house band: Standing in the Shadows of Motown. It’s a behind the scenes story of the unheralded musicians behind the singers they helped make famous. If you love the Motown sound, you must see this.

We also talked a good bit about the plight of the young black man in today’s America. One of the best books I’ve read on this is Ta-Nehisi Coates’s memoir, The Beautiful Struggle: A Father, Two Sons, and an Unlikely Road to Manhood. Coates is working on a novel right now, and also blogs at the Atlantic, here, on a variety of topics.

That’s all I’ve got. Thanks to all of you for teaching me so much about so many things. I’ll leave the formal farewell to Roy and Dale – Happy Trails!




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