Open Access (free)
James Baldwin and the Broken Silences of Black Queer Men
McKinley E Melton

James Baldwin writes within and against the testimonial tradition emerging from the Black Church, challenging the institution’s refusal to acknowledge the voices and experiences of black queer men. Baldwin’s autobiographical novel, Go Tell It on the Mountain, creates a space for Baldwin’s testimony to be expressed, and also lays the foundation for a tradition of black queer artists to follow. In the contemporary moment, poet Danez Smith inhabits Baldwin’s legacy, offering continuing critiques of the rigidity of conservative Christian ideologies, while publishing and performing poetry that gives voice to their own experiences, and those of the black queer community at large. These testimonies ultimately function as a means of rhetorical resistance, which not only articulates black queer lives and identities, but affirms them.  

James Baldwin Review
James Baldwin’s Just Above My Head
Jenny M. James

This article considers James Baldwin’s last published novel, Just Above My Head (1979), as the culmination of his exploration of kinship, reflecting on the ways distance and loss characterize African-American familial relations. By analyzing Baldwin’s representation of Hall Montana’s relationship to, and mourning of, his younger brother Arthur, this article argues that JAMH revises the terms of the black family to imagine an alternative, errant kinship that is adoptive, migratory, and sustained through songs of joy and grief. My approach to the novel’s portrayal of kinship is indebted to Édouard Glissant’s Poetics of Relation (1990), in which he defines “errantry” as a fundamental characteristic of diaspora that resists the claustrophobic, filial violence and territorial dispossession that are slavery’s legacies. Baldwin represents errant kinship in JAMH through his inclusion of music and formal experimentation. Departing from previous scholarship that reads JAMH as emblematic of the author’s artistic decline, I interpret the novel’s numerous syntactic and figurative experiments as offering new formal insight into his portrait of brotherly love. Baldwin’s integration of two distinctive leitmotifs, blood and song, is therefore read as a formal gesture toward a more capacious and migratory kinship.

James Baldwin Review
Open Access (free)
James Baldwin’s Pragmatist Aesthetics
Rohan Ghatage

This essay establishes a philosophical connection between James Baldwin and the philosopher William James by investigating how the pragmatist protocol against “vicious intellectualism” offers Baldwin a key resource for thinking through how anti-black racism might be dismantled. While Richard Wright had earlier denounced pragmatism for privileging experience over knowledge, and thereby offering the black subject no means for redressing America’s constitutive hierarchies, uncovering the current of Jamesian thought that runs through Baldwin’s essays brings into view his attempt to move beyond epistemology as the primary framework for inaugurating a future unburdened by the problem of the color line. Although Baldwin indicts contemporaneous arrangements of knowledge for producing the most dehumanizing forms of racism, he does not simply attempt to rewrite the enervating meanings to which black subjects are given. Articulating a pragmatist sensibility at various stages of his career, Baldwin repeatedly suggests that the imagining and creation of a better world is predicated upon rethinking the normative value accorded to knowledge in the practice of politics. The provocative challenge that Baldwin issues for his reader is to cease the well-established privileging of knowledge, and to instead stage the struggle for freedom within an aesthetic, rather than epistemological, paradigm.

James Baldwin Review
Catherine Akurut

continuation of patriarchy, which as Holter (1997 : 839) defines, is the ‘long-term structure of the subordination of women’. Ward believes this affects the decade-long endeavours to obtain gender equality by the feminists’ movement. While extending services designed for women to men is better than offering no services, it is problematic and fails to consider what genuinely gender-inclusive programming would look like. This reveals a blind spot regarding gender

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Corporations, Celebrities and the Construction of the Entrepreneurial Refugee Woman
Annika Bergman Rosamond and Catia Gregoratti

( Prügl, 2015 ; Roberts, 2015 ), habitually diagnose deficiencies and devise interventions to bring about improvements. The offering of such problem representations, moreover, rarely attends to the power relations that are reproduced when the other’s story is reinterpreted and simplified to fit within logics and finalities of improvement schemes ( Li, 2007 ). It is not uncommon for humanitarian actors seeking to empower women beyond borders to engage in

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Open Access (free)
Róisín Read

showcase the potential for important research to emerge when academics and practitioners collaborate meaningfully. The feminist ethos at the heart of these collaborations showcases what more explicitly feminist approaches to humanitarian research and practice can offer. Ricardo Fal-Dutra Santos tackles this question explicitly, offering a thoughtful and insightful commentary on the compatibility of feminism and humanitarian principles. He questions the idea that gender equality as a goal runs counter

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Megan Daigle, Sarah Martin, and Henri Myrttinen

dominated by the romanticised figure of the white, male humanitarian – and a space where those questioning exclusionary constructs of danger are quickly silenced and even ridiculed, despite claims to inclusiveness. We begin by discussing the rising sense of risk in the aid sector in the last two decades and a number of responses to it, most notably HEAT training, before offering observations about how the sector conceptualises security and what that means for its efforts to prevent

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
A Response to the Journal of Humanitarian Affairs Special Issue on Innovation in Humanitarian Action (JHA, 1:3)
Anna Skeels

Issue) that while donor finance has fuelled humanitarian innovation, donor conditions have also introduced limitations: Rarely have donors provided the funding flexibility or time necessary to test implementation variables around uptake, penetration, barriers or the applicability of the innovation across different clusters. Such donor round tables are a highly promising example of the kinds of strategic collaboration at system level that we need to see. While such discussions are incremental in nature, not immediately transformative in offering up a new financial

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
An Interview with Celso Amorim, Former Brazilian Foreign Minister
Juliano Fiori

, with that problematic way of seeing things, we had good foreign ministers: [Antonio Francisco Azeredo da] Silveira, during the government of [General Ernesto] Geisel, was probably the most notable. We need to lose that tendency to put ourselves down. When people criticise me, saying Brazil was trying to do more than it could actually do, I tell them, ‘Much of the time, it wasn’t Brazil offering to do things. We were called upon by other countries.’ I’m not a megalomaniac, but there are plenty of ‘nanomaniacs’ out there. Brazil was called to

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Uses and Misuses of International Humanitarian Law and Humanitarian Principles
Rony Brauman

workers than to ‘not take sides in a political controversy’, but we cannot ignore the fact that such condemnation amounts to taking a side in the controversy. Should a Burmese Buddhist organisation protesting (just hypothetically) the atrocities against the Rohingya and offering them help be considered in violation of humanitarian principles? One can argue that, on the contrary, it should be supported for its humanitarian commitment, even if that commitment violates the

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs