Dwight Hobbes Something I Said
(Papyrus Publishing, Inc.), essays on domestic abuse/rape, black identity, romance and more range from hard controversy to casual humor.
When millions of women continue to be beaten and abused annually , says renowned artist and activist Sha Cage (Minnesota Spoken Word Association), Hobbes analysis is bold and provocative. Steve Kaplan, editor of the legendary magazine Minnesota Law & Politics, states, Hobbes can be provocative and even infuriating. But, his original take on subjects...are carefully argued, convincing challenges to idea too often taken for grated. Activist and author Matthew Matt Little sums up, Dwight Hobbes is one hell of a writer. The foreword is written by renowned historian, scholar and respected community griot Mahmoud El-Kati. --dh
Hosanna! Dwight Hobbes has finally weaved together a compelling compilation of his timely, important and his always interesting, though sometime unsettling, commentary on the world that he surrounds. It consists of a miscellany of his writings from various publications sandwiched into book form.
In my view, this book is a welcomed dimension to his prolific catalogue of literary gifts as a columnist, critic, playwright, musician, lyricist, and poet. This in addition to his philosophical, ironic and comedic sensibilities, which inherently underlies his work. As a writer, Hobbes, has given himself his own moral assignment. He is part every man, part one of a kind and to say the least, he is a challenging personality. To his credit, he is aware of these traits with no apologies.
Dwight Hobbes has for a number of years, been a veritable watchful and arresting gadfly with the pen, tackling nearly every social and political topic on the agenda of public discourse. By turns, through his newspaper columns, he has managed to cajole, assault, confound and annoy his readership without skipping a beat. And yet by some magical chemistry, he embraces his readership with occasional strokes of tender loving kinship, as a responsible member of a marginalized community.
In some respects, Dwight Hobbes is a modern throw to the like of H. L. Menken and George S. Schuyler, two acerbic journalists who did not bite their tongues. Menken, of the Baltimore Sun, a European-American pain-in-the-neck or lower to the white power structure of his day from the 1920s to after the WWII era. Schuyler, an African-American, who wrote a nationally syndicated column in Black weeklies such as the Pittsburg Courier, who pointed his poisonous pen of detraction against the established African-American leadership of his times (late 1920s through the 1960s). But Hobbes , main thrust is employed as a surveyor, social critic, political agitant, and artistic exponent of the ways of Blacks and beyond.
This book offers critical commentary of some of the most critical questions of our age. Hobbes begins with a bang, addressing his arduous and terrifying experience as a homeless person. In ruthless, uncompromising language, he describes homelessness in two places where he has had the experience. Twin Cities social service programs bend over backwards to put people on their feet, make them self-sufficient, you stand a fighting chance, compared to someplace like New York, where homelessness amounts to a living death sentence.
In summation, let it be said that Hobbes sweeping panoramic view of social ills affecting African American life in part a service reminding us of the nitty-gritty reality of tolerated and unnecessary human suffering: The sweep through homelessness, endemic violence, abuse of women by men and vice versa, victims of incarceration, rape, in short, the mean street and Black conservatives are challenges to African American culture. His recitation of the sins of flesh is an obvious call to action. Something I Said is a book, which clearly outlines social problems begging for studied attention. Some of the horrific problems are but dramatic symptoms, which points to a far deeper intractable historical realty and that is the malicious doctrine of White supremacy, which establishes institutions, large and little, which in turn produces sustained pervasive acts against innocent people. In this age of post racial or multiracialism racism still prevails. And by racism, I mean white supremacy.
In deed some of the questions raised by the author are seemingly self-inflicted, a matter of personal irresponsibility, and a bit of it is, but we must never allow ourselves to forget the larger, deeper trans-generational question of systemic racism, which has to do with power, oppression and domination. --Mahmoud El-Kati
Dwight Hobbes, a veteran writer takes pride in being a self-described warhorse. Been at this a long time. Starting in 1992 with a penchant for flying in the face of politically correctness. Hobbes essay If You Won t Help Yourself...
, an unsympathetic take on homelessness, was reprinted from COLORS Magazine in Reader s Digest and The Washington Post. It jump-started a career that previously consisted of the short story One Going, One Staying
in ESSENCE and a couple plays produced in college. At Long Island University, Hobbes saw Pain in the Midst and You Can t Always Sometimes Never Tell
produced with Broadway-television actor starring in Pain in the Midst
. If You Won t Help Yourself...
was the basis for Hobbes drama, Shelter
, which swept Twin Cities critics at Minneapolis Star Tribune, St. Paul Pioneer Press and City Pages.
Something I Said is not going to please everybody. It is, nonetheless, a page-turner that sets tongues to wagging.