Assata: An Autobiography by Assata Shakur

By Assata Shakur

On could 2, 1973, Black Panther Assata Shakur (aka JoAnne Chesimard) lay in a health facility, on the subject of loss of life, handcuffed to her mattress, whereas neighborhood, country, and federal police tried to question her concerning the shootout at the New Jersey Turnpike that had claimed the lifetime of a white kingdom trooper. lengthy a goal of J. Edgar Hoover's crusade to defame, infiltrate, and criminalize Black nationalist agencies and their leaders, Shakur used to be incarcerated for 4 years ahead of her conviction on flimsy proof in 1977 as an associate to murder.


This intensely own and political autobiography belies the fearsome picture of JoAnne Chesimard lengthy projected by way of the media and the nation. With wit and candor, Assata Shakur recounts the reviews that led her to a lifetime of activism and portrays the strengths, weaknesses, and eventual death of Black and White progressive teams on the hand of government officers. the result's a sign contribution to the literature approximately becoming up Black in the USA that has already taken its position along The Autobiography of Malcolm X and the works of Maya Angelou.

Two years after her conviction, Assata Shakur escaped from criminal. She was once given political asylum by way of Cuba, the place she now resides.


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Example text

The medics examined me. I tried to talk, but only bubbles came out. I was foaming at the mouth. ” they asked each other as if i wasn’t there. They concluded their examination. I was relieved. “Let’s move it,” one of them said. , but wait a minute,” said the driver and he got out. “Hit twice,” i heard him say. ” The driver slammed the door. He said something else but i didn’t understand it. Time passed. I was floating off again. It felt so weird, like a dream, a nightmare. More time passed. It seemed like forever.

It felt so weird, like a dream, a nightmare. More time passed. It seemed like forever. I was in and out, in and out. ” I floated off again. I heard another voice. ” I wondered how long the ambulance had been sitting there. The attendants looked nervous. The bubbles in my chest felt like they were growing bigger. When they burst, my whole chest shattered. I faded again and it was down South in the summertime. I thought about my grandmother. At last the ambulance was moving. ” Š The hospital is glaring white.

We figured a request for a federal escort out of the state of New Jersey might put some pressure on the local police. These were the kinds of measures—and friends—needed in such a volatile time. I relate this incident in detail because it may help readers of Assata’s autobiography not only to focus on the political role of the police during the 1970s but also to better understand important historical aspects of the routine racial profiling associated with current police practices. Such a historical perspective is especially important today when brazen expressions of structural racism—such as the pattern of mass imprisonment to which communities of color are subjected—are rendered invisible by the prevailing moral panic over crime.

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