Interview with Sonia Sanchez

Could you talk again about the, um, the non-involvement of Black women in the leadership, in terms of planning for the Congress of African Peoples' Convention?


Well, one of the things that one understood as, as one appeared in Atlanta, Georgia. Um, one understood that there was no real leadership, um, of Black women in the planning, in even the execution, maybe in the execution, maybe in the doing of, um, um, running around making sure that things were kept on time or passing out pencils or making sure the, um, that we had directions, in terms of places to eat, et cetera. But you came there, not really knowing what that agenda was all about. You came there, not really knowing what the expectations were. So, therefore, you came out of great love, ah, for our people. You came out of great love for the people who were going to be participants there. And you came because you knew you were involved with history. You were indeed a part of history so you came, ah, wondering exactly what would come out of all of that. Um, what came out of all that was of course, um, African Liberation Days. Um, what came out of that of course was Gary, later on, where we say the fusion of, ah, poets and writers and cultural workers and politicians and, and the fusion of people who were involved in politics, with people who were just ordinary students and workers, et cetera. But we also knew at that particular point, ah, that, there again was an example of things being planned without the participation of African-American women. And I decided at the last minute that I would not participate in that, um, I decided that, um, I would not go, that I would wait for the conclusions, ah, of that, ah, meeting.