Archive for April 1st, 2013

Political Prisoner Talk with Music @ Pleasant Street Books Tuesday 7:30pm

marroonWe received this note and invitation from Sonny 
Saul of an unusual "happening" at Pleasant 
Street Books tomorrow evening:

My son, Quincy, has co edited a book of the 
writings of Russell "Maroon" Shoatz. 

The talk here, Tues April 2 at 7:30 is an 
early stop on a "book  tour" that will 
cross the states. 

Mr Shoatz's daughter, Teresa, will 
also speak. 

It is fair to say that Mr Shoatz is a political prisoner. He 
has been held in solitary confinement for nearly thirty years. Yes. 
Thirty. None of us can imagine that. 

Part of my interest is humanitarian. The proceeds from the book tour 
- I hope that everyone who  comes will buy the book - 
(through a generous donation by Shiretown Books it will be 
offered at a significantly lower price) - will all be  used for
legal fees, the object being the release of Mr Shoatz into the 
general prison population. 

Another part of my interest is existential.The most ascetic monks
we know of have not lived more in solitude than 
Russell Shoatz. 

And, finally, there are the writings which I suspect will 
become very widely read.Mr Shoatz's intelligence will be obvious  
to readers at once and his alternative 
perspective on U.S. history and 
on patriarchy/matriarchy are worth knowing.  

There will be live music. A trio - bass, clarinet and 
piano will perform a piece written for this event.     

I hope that you will come and possibly, spread the word to 
others who may have an interest. THANK YOU!     Sonny Saul

Here is a description of the book from its publisher, PM Press:

Russell Maroon Shoatz is a political prisoner who has been held unjustly for over thirty years, including two decades in solitary confinement. He was active as a leader in the Black Liberation Movement in Philadelphia, both above and underground. His successful escapes from maximum-security prisons earned him the title “Maroon.” This is the first published collection of his accumulated written works, and also includes new essays written expressly for this volume.

Despite the torture and deprivation that has been everyday life for Maroon over the last several decades, he has remained at the cutting edge of history through his writings. His work is innovative and revolutionary on multiple levels:
• His self-critical and fresh retelling of the Black liberation struggle in the U.S. includes many practical and theoretical insights;
• His analysis of the prison system, particularly in relation to capitalism, imperialism, and the drug war, takes us far beyond the recently-popular analysis of the Prison Industrial Complex, contained in books such as The New Jim Crow;
• His historical research and writings on Maroon communities throughout the Americas, drawing many insights from these societies in the fields of political and military revolutionary strategy are unprecedented; and finally
• His sharp and profound understanding of the current historical moment, with clear proposals for how to move forward embracing new political concepts and practices (including but not limited to eco-socialism, matriarchy and eco-feminism, food security, prefiguration and the Occupy Wall Street movement) provide cutting-edge challenges for today’s movements for social change.