A Thought From Taking BA Speaks: REVOLUTION—NOTHING LESS! to the Classroom

March 10, 2013 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us


From a reader:

A couple of us went into a classroom to promote the premier of BA Speaks: REVOLUTION—NOTHING LESS! We made a presentation aimed at making the point that the most important thing these students could do was clear the day and be in the house for that premier. We showed them the ad that's being played before every film that shows at the commercial theater in NYC where the premier will occur. The professor told the students that he was going and that he would give extra credit to any student who attended the premier and wrote a paper on it.

All of this created a lively atmosphere with students speaking bitterness about particular outrages and raising broader questions about whether revolution was possible, was there a plan for it, whether it would lead to chaos, how could you have police who wouldn't use their power to abuse people and more. The grappling over this was 2 sided, with some students addressing the questions that other students raised, and the 2 revolutionaries telling people that these questions are reasons why they needed to be at the premier because BA was going to address all that and more.

With all this swirling, the young revolutionary called on those who were going to be there for the premier to stand up. 2 students stood up, and we led 2/3 of the class in applauding them. The revolutionary asked them to say why they were going to the premier. The 1st student, a young woman said: "I know about the problems, and we shouldn't have to be living like this. I know it's going to take a movement to do something about all this, and I want to learn more about it." The 2nd, a young man, said: "I know a little bit about revolution, and I know it's something that we need. I want to be there to learn more about it and be a part of it."

This exerted a pull on other students to take the premier more seriously. Another student bought a ticket at the end of the class, and almost all the students gave us their e mail addresses to get updates on the premier. This meant we could send them the e mails being put out about the premier, and we had already urged them to spread the word on the premier to others. It also meant they'd be getting materials they needed to check out themselves, like the interviews BA did with Cornel West and Michael Slate, and the video clip of BA thru the years.

Now we need to work on ways to tap into the desire of a number of the students to be there on the 16th and work to get them to be in the house then and to engage BA in the lead up to the premier.

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