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And from the beginning of slavery, they did.
All right, so -- but, on balance, you have in American blacks
a greater amount of self-doubt, conflict, ambivalence; the kind of
thing that my life and my research demonstrated about the socialization
of black children in America, you know, where it takes them a while to
come to grips with the fact that they are worthy of more respect than
the society as a whole gives them. I mean, they have to have this.
Now, this pattern of socialization, as far as I can see, did
not occur in the West Indies. The West Indian black could afford to
be more assertive and insistent upon his self-esteem and identity,
because he didn't have to fight the counter-forces as vigorously and as
consistently as the American blacks.
So he comes to America, and he has a higher proportion of
his group involved in political assertiveness, and I think the figures
will show that, in the Northeastern part of the nation, where there's
a higher percentage of West Indians than anywhere else, that they are
disporportionately in the area of political activism.
You know, Shirley Chisholm and Ray Jones, and
Wallaba Stewart, Basil Paterson, --
And I guess, if I were a limited American black, I would have
some anxiety about this, as some do. And particularly if I didn't
have time to try to understand the historical and sociological context
in which this makes sense.
A high proportion of West Indian blacks are involved in
educational assertiveness, advancement, and there is a spillover from
their involvement to American blacks -- and economic, a very high
proportion of West Indian blacks are making economic, you know,
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