Listen Siblings, I come in peace,
“There is no collective memory where there is no collective effort.” — Onitaset Kumat
A regal Elder once told me to research Anansi the Spider.
When it’s too late to work and too early to sleep, a Sisterhood of Mothers can gather the young and teach them Love, Knowledge and Wisdom. We can call this time “Story Time,” and so it was in my Mother’s youth; in my youth it was called “Television Time” and that is why I never knew Anansi. What future generations call it is up to us.
My Parents were born and raised in Jamaica. When I asked my Mother, Father, Uncles and Aunts about Anansi, they all had a tale to share. Many Carribeans of their age can retell a tale or two. But until I asked I never heard of them; and neither did many American-born Africans, stretching from my generation to my Grandparent’s.
Yet, it should surprise the reader that not only was Anansi’s tales in America, they were here for over four-hundred years and came with African people from Mother Africa. Our Elders in the South until recently lived in a more genuine African culture. With Maternal Uncles–the Brothers of the Mother as the “Father Figure”–and stories passed down from traditional Africa [read more on Uncles on this site.]
In the South during slavery, some Anansi stories were known as Br’er Rabbit stories (in Haiti “Ti Malis”.) Anancy and Br’er come from the African tradition of Fable telling. An Ancient African collection of tales is “Aesop’s Fables.” You are already familiar with “The Hare and the Tortoise” and “The Shepherd’s Boy” (also known as “The Boy who cried Wolf”) and you have heard expressions such as “The Lion’s Share” and “The Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing.” Anansi and Br’er’s tales are similar fables with morals and educational value, but feature the recurring lead characters, Anansi and Br’er Rabbit who Europeans categorized as “Tricksters.” It’s very amazing that Africans on plantations would retell Br’er Rabbit stories and even the European enslavers would listen in glee. Many Europeans recorded the tales for posterity. The most popular European is Joel Chandler Harris who popularized “Uncle Remus.” Others, like Robert Roosevelt, Theodore Roosevelt’s Uncle, published our stories too. It’s interesting that Bugs Bunny is seen as a “Modern” Br’er Rabbit–a “Modern” “Trickster.” However, it’s worth noting how non-violent Anansi and Br’er tales are and how violent Bugs Bunny and ilk are. A proverb recorded from the Akan, who are not ironically tied to the Anansi tales is, “It is the fool whose own tomatoes are sold to him.” We should wonder what sort of person buys bad tomatoes.
All of this is said to provide for you an image of yourself. Your stories are dying. You should keep your stories alive. Some of us are–see Joan Andrea Hutchinson below–but more of us need to do our parts. Below I provide some educational resource for you to revisit and contribute to. While this can be helpful today, nothing will be more helpful for your Community then a Community Center which re-educates us in African Philosophy–the African Blood Siblings Community Center. When we as a Community gather for Story Time, like our Elders did, we as a Community can create generations of Loving, Knowledgeable and Wise Africans. Write me to more deeply discuss this. We sleep in the beds that we make. We don’t need to be making beds with tacks. Subscribe, Share, Love.
Anansi and African Educational Resources
By Onitaset Kumat
*Also called Annancy, Anancy, Anancyi, Ananansa, Ananse, Anansi Drew, Aunt Nancy, Cha Nanzi, Hanansi, Kompa Nanzi, Pablo Barnansi, Compé Anansi, Kwaku Anansi, Nansi, Anansiil, B’anansi, Ayiyi, Kacou Ananzè
Anansi and the Sky Kingdom
Anansi, a fly and an ant go to the Sky Kingdom to retrieve light for the animals on Earth. They are given tasks impossible for one person, but overcome each through teamwork.
Anansi and the Panther Queen
The Panther Queen mocks Anansi so Anansi turns her into a human and only promises to change her back if she helps him.
Anansi Goes to Lunch
This is the lovable story as to why Spiders have small waists and why children should not be greedy.
Anancy and Common Sense
This is among my favorites. It’s beautifully narrated by Joan Andrea Hutchinson and teaches why everyone has at least a little Common Sense. See more of her work here: http://www.anancy-stories.com/Storyteller.php
Anansi and the Tug o’ War
An Elephant calls Anansi the Spider a weakling, so Anansi teaches the Elephant who between the two is stronger and is respected afterward.
Other African Stories
The Zulu Creation Myth
This is a video representation of the tale of Unkulunkulu, the creator in the Zulu canon. It relates why people die as opposed to having eternal life. Dilligent readers may see the parallel of this creation story with Ancient KMT’s.
Where Stories Come From (A Traditional Zulu Story)
This is said to be a traditional Zulu Story. Around “Story Time” a village found itself without stories, so one woman went out into the world to find some.
This is a growing collection of quotations I come across. Check back with it frequently. I record our witticisms and my own.
This is a separate collection of quotations, largely of the modern African diaspora. It’s a great source of Wisdom.
Wa’Set was the ancient center of Nile Valley Dynastic Education. Most every scholar of the Ancient World went there to study. There were Proverbs all around it. This is a collection of those Proverbs.
A Knowledgeable Brother on Youtube was ‘debating’ so I took what he wrote and put it in this thread. It’s very Knowledgeable. Unfortunately, where he was debating, the video was deleted and all of his comments. It goes to show how useful it is to record when one sees, but also how useful it is to set up an institution for Liberation, not rely on another’s.
“Famous Quotes” by AFieldNegro: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2011/09/13/famous-quotes-by-afieldnegro/
A Brother calling himself AFieldNegro collected motivational quotations from African leaders in America and Gandhi. It’s another strong collection.
Useful Links for Africa Stories
All of the stories above came from this site. The main editor is striving to collect videobooks of children’s stories by or about “People of Color.” It’s a new project that’s so far very intelligently operated. Expect many updates.
Aesop’s Fables : http://www.gutenberg.org/cache/epub/28/pg28.html
This is the ancient collection of African fables. You are already familiar with many, but read and re-read this work. I made a post explaining two of them and their relevance to our struggle: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2011/11/13/two-of-aesops-fables-and-a-lesson/
Uncle Remus’ Stories: http://www.gutenberg.org/cache/epub/2306/pg2306.html
These are the Br’er Rabbit tales as collected by a European. It’s not clear how Anansi turned into Br’er Rabbit, but consider each Br’er Rabbit tale an Anansi Story.
“Dinner After Europe” by Onitaset Kumat: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2012/02/08/dinner-after-europe-my-play-for-the-2nd-annual-national-black-hivaids-theatre-initiative/
This was a masterful ten-minute play I wrote on HIV/AIDS. The mechanics of a good dialogue can be learned by studying this play.
“Blake; or, the Huts of America” by Martin Delany: http://utc.iath.virginia.edu/africam/blakehp.html
Unfortunately, this is only the first part of an excellent, excellent book Martin Delany. Frederick Douglass said of Martin Delany that while Frederick himself woke up every morning saying “I’m a man;” Martin Delany said “I’m a Black Man.” Delany’s book Blake is juicy insight into the conditions of slavery state by state but also how to make plans for liberation: “Stand still and see the salvation.”
Masterpieces of Negro Eloquence: http://www.gutenberg.org/files/22240/22240-h/22240-h.htm
This is a collection of excellent elocution by African people. With Douglass, Dunbar, Miller, Du Bois, Garnet, Crummel and dozens more, it’s an incomparable resource for examining our genius. You’ll see why eloquent Europeans were often rumored to have African blood–and you’ll no longer be surprised at Obama’s rhetorical skills.
The Introduction to the African Blood Siblings: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2012/04/21/the-introduction-to-african-blood-siblings/
This is a superb oration by yours truly, that breaks down the basics of eloqution and what we aim to achieve and how.
Maroon and Build For Self: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/maroon-and-build-for-self/
My favorite collection of poetics and prosaics. A fundraiser for the African Blood Siblings authored by yours truly. Please remember that I do serious labour for this site on your behalf–I’m biased because I understand what it costs to give out information more than most others do.
The Complete Poems of Paul Laurence Dunbar: http://www.gutenberg.org/files/18338/18338-h/18338-h.htm
J.A. Rogers calls Paul Laurence Dunbar the First Great Poet in the Americas. While Shakespeare is considered ‘great’ for his breadth of topics, it’s well-known that Dunbar exceeds Shakespeare there; and Dunbar’s mastery of language is unquestioned. Jefferson Davis, President of the defeated Confederacy, applauded Dunbar’s brilliance at a ceremony. It’s Dunbar’s style that I emulate.
“African Blood Siblings (Poem)” by Onitaset Kumat: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/directory/abs/lore/namesake/poem/
The namesake for the African Blood Siblings. It’s not too often that poems are more masterful. This poem is actually three Sonnets with a poignant addition. It emulates Claude McKay’s “If we must die”.
“If we must die” by Claude McKay: http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/15250
One of the strongest poems you can read. “If we must die, let it not be like hogs.” That’s more easily said than done.
“Those Who Know” by Marcus Garvey: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2012/08/15/poem-those-who-know-by-marcus-garvey/
A brilliant poem from a brilliant leader. Marcus Garvey was once nearly forgotten due to our neglect. It’s difficult, but we’re building institutions that we can forever remember ourselves. This is why we urge more contributions and able hands to the African Blood Siblings.
Poems by Phyllis Wheatley: http://www.gutenberg.org/cache/epub/409/pg409.html
Phyllis Wheatley was one of my first role models. Just a real-life genius. Though she is like all of us. With the right nurturing, we can be those “Loving, Knowledgeable and Wise Africans.” Read in her yourself and strive for greatness with the African Blood Siblings.
“Half-Steppin’ Thru History” by Laini Mataka:
Rare that you hear a Sister tell it like this. A popular reference is “She ain’t never lied.” This poem makes you want to say that. “Truth!”
Ancient African Love Poem: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2012/04/16/ancient-african-love-poem/
Arguably one of the best poems of all time. You really wonder how beautiful this woman is.
This is an ancient poem that implicitly shows how Socrates actually insults every European. After reading this, it may be more clear as to why they put him to death.
“Pay for what you need” by Onitaset Kumat: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2011/12/16/poetry-pay-for-what-you-need/
Another excellent poem by me. It’s one to share. It goes over why one ought “Pays for what we need.” As it we’re, most of us are asking one another “Is it free?” or worse, we think poor of those of us who charge one another for necessities. Meanwhile Alcohol, Fast Foods, Haircare and other frivolous commodities are overpriced–clearly we are wise with our money only when it comes to our own people. Hopefully, you’ll notice the Donation button. :)
African Femininity and Masculinity: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2013/01/24/african-femininity-and-masculinity/
Negro Artist: http://www.negroartist.com/
An excellent collection of our art, but also a resource for excellent African manuscripts. Search deeply enough and you can find Malcolm X’s Autobiography as well as Marcus Garvey’s “Philosophies and Opinions.”
Adinkra Symbols: http://www.adinkra.org/htmls/adinkra_index.htm
Wonderfully intelligent symbolism that truly teach you of the African Psychology. Here’s where Sankofa–Return and Get it–comes from and many other brilliant ideas like Woforo dua pa a–”When you climb a good tree.” The full expression is “When you climb a good tree, you are given a push.” This tells you that Communities get behind Community efforts. It was so in Africa, we are striving to make it so here. Be your African self Sibling!
“Svastika” (as spelled from Sanskrit) : http://onitaset.tumblr.com/post/31492455997/nefermaathotep-the-swastika-that-was-thought-to
The symbol that the German dictator used to represent the Aryan Race is actually a rotation of an Ancient African Symbol representing 360 degrees of Knowledge. That it’s in Asia as well as Africa shows you the extent of African Unity and Rule in the Ancient World. Hesiod of Ancient Greek antiquity put it this way: “The Ethiopes, who are divided in two, the most remote of men: Some where Helios (the sun) sets, others where he rises . . ..”
Pyramids and Dragons: http://onitaset.tumblr.com/post/31376168099/cosmicyoruba-leoyardiechick-cosmicyoruba
In Ancient Times, some Africans represented themselves by the symbol of the Dragon. To this day Europeans teach tales of hunting Dragons for their wealth. What should be interesting here is not only the presence in Asia but also America. This teaches just how unified African people were in the Ancient World. One Queen ruled over Africans in Africa, Asia and the Americas. This is why we say we are trying to Restore African people. Few people understand how great a purpose this is. But your assistance is invaluable. We can restore our architectural prowess and international acumen with your help. We just need to set the foundation.
“You Must Learn” by KRS-One:
This teaches you about the necessity of an independent education system, but also what we do not learn. For instance, how the Dark Ages came about and how “racist” ideas became “academic.”
“Nature of the Threat” by Ras Kass:
This is an interesting summary of History. It’s not 100% true but researching the claims would delight the interested. Though, avoid getting bogged down in the statements. We need to build lasting institutions, not play ‘verify.’ Ultimately, the message is on-point: The Nature of Europeans has not changed.
“Mystery of Iniquity” by Lauryn Hill:
This excellent work by Lauryn Hill gives a lyrically talented description of the judicial system in America and its corruption. From the disinterested jury to the deceitful defense lawyer, it shows why we really need to avoid falling into that trap.
“Shaka Zulu Pickney” by Tarrus Riley:
Tarrus Riley is another excellent artist. He recently released this song promoting our historical legacy. Tarrus Riley’s “She’s Royal” is another favorite. This is a good Brother.
“Hills and Valleys” by Buju Banton:
“Don’t make them fool you, don’t believe for a minute that they are with you.” Buju Banton is now in Prison, but before then he made excellent music and this one is very, very soothing. The lesson is about the deceitful nature of “them.” You figure out who “they” are.
“Crazy Baldhead” by Bob Marley:
Bob Marley is very explicit with who the problem is. A “Baldhead” is a European. This song is in essence “Maroon and Build For Self.”
“Five on the Black Hand Side” by Keisha Brown:
Keisha Brown sings the title track for the 1970s film “Five on the Black Hand Side.” It’s replete with truth on a African Community.
Music of the United Negro Improvement Association: http://www.rbgtube.com/play.php?vid=8532
This is sung by Thelma Massey and Lord Obstinate with Music by the Tony Thomas Orchestra. For The Universal Ethiopian Anthem, the lyrics are by Arnold Josiah Ford. This is on RBGTUBE, a Pan-African “Youtube.” It can not be embedded. This is the subtle obstacles for African industries inscribed in most all European media. Kind of like when you fill out a language box and never get the choice of “Twi” or “Yoruba.”
“See Line (??) Woman”:
The Schipp Sisters, Christine and Katherine, sing this old African song. Nina Simone sang a different version. In case you do not think that you can move to the beat–put on this song and challenge yourself to sit still. This is really, really great music. Too bad that the translation is largely lost. My research into even the title has so far been fruitless.
This is a version of “Sinner Man” sung by Will Holt and Chorus. Nina Simone sang a different version. Peter Tosh sang another version titled “Downpressor Man.” It’s judgment day and the Sinner Man seeks to hide, begging the water and the mountains to hide him. They are not good hiding places. Sinner Man shows God that he’s praying but God says that it’s too late. So Sinner man goes to whom will hide him. It’s an interesting song–kind of fear-based–but it can relate to our experience as African people. Who can we hide from without building and defending our own institutions? “Where you gonna run to?”
“Mac the Knife” by Louis Armstrong:
This is more just a sweet tune. Not too historic. But thank me for including it if you love it. It shows how Mac is different from a Shark in his method of killing–he’s without warning or trace.
“Strange Fruit” by Billie Holiday:
Wonderful tune. Very sad. “The Strange Fruit” is the body of an African person. There are lynching stories listed on the African Blood Siblings Table of Contents.
“Lift every voice and Sing” or “The Negro National Anthem” by James Weldon Johnson:
This is a wonderful song and this video is pretty good too. It certainly celebrates Barack Obama. I really enjoy singing this song. At the United African Movement, we began each meeting with a rendition.
“Mississippi Goddamn” by Nina Simone:
This is a song from Nina Simone. Here she rails against Mississippi.
“Young, Gifted and Black” sung by Bob Andy and Marcia Griffins:
This song was written by Nina Simone and it was widely covered. Aretha Franklin’s Album is named after the song. This version by Bob and Marcia is the one I am most familiar with.
“Get a Job” by Silhouettes:
This is a very nice song to listen to. It does follow the mentality of “Working for Europeans” but the magic of the tones and coordination makes you overlook this error. Whether good or bad, this was “The track” in 1958. “Yip yip yip yip yip yip, boom boom boom boom boom boom GET A JOB!” Maybe “Make a Job” would be a more appropriate song today.
The Richard Pryor Show’s “Come From Man” Intro:
Richard Pryor was a very successful African comedian in America. In 1977 “The Richard Pryor Show” premiered and after four episodes was canceled. There he had skits relating the deliberate hiding of African knowledge and the above dance routine. The routine is important for an African people who forget their background.
In our culture, different deities have different styles of dances. In the modern age, many of these dances are recorded. It’s more a matter of knowing the names of the deities then researching them. This video is of Oshun in the Yoruba tradition. The performer here is from Cuba but notice that she’s dancing in Russia.
This, filmed during the 50s, shows a 30s dance, with dancers Al Minns and Leon James. It’s a commercialized version of what was once sacred–dancing. From here we come to where we are today: Losing Meaning Until We Gain Theirs. The trend was set, our actions decide the trend. The trend today in Africa and America are toward our own sexual exploitation. Read the “Effeminization of the Black Male.“ The Modus Operandi remains “Supplant the Meaning.”
“We are Nbogboni” — http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2012/04/27/we-are-nbogboni/
Marimba Ani’s daughter recites this Affirmation at the end of one of her Mother’s lectures. It’s an Affirmation promoting Sisterhood and female empowerment.
“The African Affirmation” — http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2012/01/16/the-african-affirmation/
At the end of each United African Movement meeting, we would recite this Affirmation after joining in a circle. It’s a pledge to rise and never fall again!
“An African Libation” — http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2012/03/09/an-african-libation/
I wrote this African Libation in the Akan tradition. In our tradition, we begin meetings with Libations. Libations are one of our earliest literary forms.
Thinkers and their topics
Cheikh Anta Diop – Cultural Identity
Yosef Ben Jochannan – World Religions
Ivan Van Sertima — Global Presence
J.A. Rogers – Individual Accomplishments
John Henrik Clarke — African Unity
John G. Jackson — Ancient Ethiopia
Malcolm X — Black Nationalism
Martin R Delany – Pan-African Abolitionism
Benjamin Bannecker — Dogon Science
Marcus Garvey – Pan-African Philosophy
Onitaset Kumat – African Consciousness
Notable Mentions (Excerpts are on this Site):
“Stolen Legacy” by George James : A precise thesis on the African Origin of Greek Philosophy
“The Destruction of Black Civilizations” by Chanceller Williams : A precise thesis on how every African Civilization was destroyed by Europeans and Asians
“Maroon and Build For Self” By Onitaset Kumat : A Philosopher-King’s collection of Prosaics and Poetics
Queen Nanny — One of three ABS Guides, Nanny defended the Maroons of Jamaica and restored African culture. To this day “Nannytown” stands as a testament to this Queen’s devotion to us. She is one of the three national heroes of Jamaica.
Taharqo — One of three ABS Guides, Taharqo came from Ethiopia–Africa–to give the last defense of Egypt (KMT). He and his family restored African culture in Egypt too–re-opening temples that were closed by the Asian invaders.
Ngola Nzingha — One of three ABS Guides, Queen Nzingha fought against the slave trade very competently. More of her story here: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2012/04/06/an-occidentals-account-on-the-two-hundred-mile-trek-to-the-slave-pens/
Aahmes Nefertari — Said to be the greatest hero of Ancient KMT and arguably the most honoured. She led the coalition of Africans who defeated the first Asian invaders: the Hyksos. Until the Christian Era parades were regularly done in her honor.
Nana Yaa Asantewa — The last defense against the British for the Ashanti Empire, now in Modern Ghana. When the council of men gave up, she brought forth unwavering bursts of women and men to give the British a real fight.
Dahia-Al Kahina — The Queen in North Africa who stopped Islam from penetrating West Africa. In 705 AD, she re-directed Islam’s spread to Europe. Hence why Europeans were dominated for over 700 years by “Moors.” A true History Maker.
Queen Candace — During the time of “Alexander The Great,” Queen Candace was the most powerful Military Leader. She, the leader of Ethiopia–Africa, was so intimidating that Alexander did not war with Africa because he did not want his first loss to be to a woman. This is why his expansion was east and northward, not southward. Note: the name “Queen Candace” may be redundant.
Bouckman Dutty — A Jamaican transplant become Maroon in Haiti, who with Cecile Fatiman led the Vodou (Vodon) ceremony in Bois Caiman 1791. This initiated the first incident in recorded history where an enslaved people successfully revolted against their enslavers, the Haitian Revolution. This shows the importance of being international, being a Marooon, and being true to your culture. The importance of the African Blood Siblings. “Bouckman” is said to mean “Bookman” because Bouckman could read.
Mathematics and Science
Maroon and Build For Self: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/maroon-and-build-for-self/
There’s a bit of Mathematics in this booklet. The writing should excite even the most experienced mathematicians.
Innerstanding Fractions: http://africanbloodsiblings.wordpress.com/2012/02/15/of-innerstanding-fractions/
I wrote this essay to explain fractions to a young woman. It’s an archetype for what writing an African textbook on Mathematics may look like.
Buffalo’s Mathematicians of the African Diaspora page: http://www.math.buffalo.edu/mad/index.html
This is a collection of pages related to Mathematics, Physics and Computer Science with regard the African experience. Expect a listing of African Mathematicians, Physicists and Computer Scientists, as well as examples of our Ancient Mathematics and Science. Really well-done and comprehensive.
Ancient Ethiopian Calculation Method:
This video shows an interesting way to do multiplication.
Vedic Mathematics: http://www.vedicmaths.org/Free%20Resources/Sutras/Sutras.asp
This site showcases the Ancient “Vedic” Mathematics, which is essentially Ancient African Mathematics. If you want to learn how to easily solve 88 x 98 in your head, come here.
There are many other examples of Ancient Mathematics, but I’m not too familiar with them, so any input there is welcome. “Sacred Geometry” and “Horus-Eye Fraction Method” are such topics, but there are many, many more. It should be known, for instance, that up until the 1585, the Ancient Egyptian methodology of Mathematics was in high usage among Europeans. Now it is hard to understand.
The above list is no where near complete. There could have been many more additions, but this is a foundation from which we can begin transforming our Communities. We should not learn for learning’s sake, but always keep in mind our purpose: To Create New Generations of Loving, Knowledgeable and Wise Africans. Inspire yourself to donate to this cause and work for this cause. Write me today and distribute our flyer. I devote myself to you to secure a better future for all of us. Please give me a push up this good tree as I extend my hand to pull you and our unborn up.
Please share and revisit (bookmark) this page, write and underwrite.