New York Times’ reporter Jennifer Schuessler provided the latest entry in the paper’s strange admiration for left-wing dictators, and those “intellectuals” that admire them. Tribute to Castro-loving Communist Angela Davis on the front of Wednesday’s Arts page, “The Davis Papers: Harvard Gets Them – Angela Davis’s personal archive traces her evolution from obscurity to activist.” Oh joy:
Few people have experienced as dramatic a life as Angela Davis.
Nearly 50 years ago, she was transformed from an obscure 26-year-old philosophy instructor into one of the world’s most famous activists, an instantly recognizable icon of the global left whose image, complete with her signature full Afro, was emblazoned on T-shirts, buttons and banners.
Now she has achieved canonization of a more scholarly sort. The Schlesinger Library at Harvard University’s Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study is announcing Tuesday that it has acquired her personal archive, more than 150 boxes of papers, photographs, pamphlets and other material that spans her entire life.
The acquisition comes as scholars are telling a less male-dominated, top-down story about the Black Power movement and the left in general. It also sheds light on the rise of intersectional feminism (which takes into account women’s overlapping identities) and the campaign against mass incarceration, to name two causes Professor Davis helped pioneer before there were quite words for them.
Davis has no business being anywhere near a critic of a prison system, give her belief of the criminality of Soviet dissidents.
Not a word of criticism of Davis’s radical acts and beliefs of the same ‘60s radical and former fugitive for murder (who made the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted List) who backed the imprisonment of Soviet political dissidents and defending the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968. That and her radical anti-Americanism made her a heroine to the international Communist movement.
A photo caption was damning in showing Davis’s love for Cuba’s Communist tyrant, although the Times seems blissfully ignorant of it: “A “Free Angela” pamphlet from Cuba is affixed with a Post-it note from the writer Alice Walker. “Met and like Fidel,” Ms. Walker wrote.”
Like any good leftist, Davis sold her work to Harvard:
(The library is not disclosing the price of the archive, which it said it bought directly from Professor Davis, who had stored much of the material in her home in Oakland.)
Schuessler finally got around to describing why some people don’t like Davis, in blandished liberal fashion:
In 1970, she was charged with murder, kidnapping and criminal conspiracy charges after guns she had purchased were used in an attack on the Marin County Courthouse that was aimed at liberating the Soledad Brothers, but instead left four people, including the attacker, dead. The trial that followed -- in which Professor Davis participated in her own defense -- sparked an international campaign, turning “Free Angela” into a global rallying cry.
Many are decorated with hand-drawn flowers, as part of a “Million Roses For Angela” campaign, organized by East German youth. “If Jesus can’t save Angelica,” one correspondent wrote, slightly mangling her name, “who can save Jesus?”
The same East German dictatorship which was shooting and torturing would-be emigrants and dissidents.