The Dissidents

The Dissidents

Welcome to the Dissidents podcast from the Institute for Liberal Values (formerly the Counterweight Podcast), where we talk about how we can strive for a world in which freedom and reason are at the forefront of all human society. read less
Society & CultureSociety & Culture

Episodes

Legacies of Black Pioneers: The Problem with Black Excellence with Ada Akpala
Apr 5 2024
Legacies of Black Pioneers: The Problem with Black Excellence with Ada Akpala
In this series of the Dissidents Podcast, Legacies of Black Pioneers, we speak with Ada Akpala of the Equiano Project on her problem with the term “black excellence”.  Co-hosts, Winkfield Twyman, Jr. & Jennifer Richmond speak often of black resilience and triumph in their book, Letters in Black and White. After reading Ada's piece, My Problem with the Term Black Excellence, Wink sent her a note saying, "Jen has used the phrase "black excellence" in a recent tweet. I have devoted a month to exploring Pioneer Black Lawyers. Maybe, Jen and I missed the mark..." We talk with Ada about the limitations of a well-intended phrase, black excellence. Does the phrase frame blackness in a negative light? Are there circumstances where black excellence conveys a constructive and positive good? Our discussion takes us from London to Virginia and Nigeria. Does black excellence make sense in a world containing over 1 billion people of Sub-Saharan descent? The question deserves more than a yes or a no answer. Enjoy a thoughtful conversation about a word many take for granted, black excellence.   Sign up on Circle to be a part of our live events and to join the conversations, and visit our website to sign up for our monthly newsletter to keep in the loop of all our new offerings. Resources: My Problem with the Term Black Excellence, Ada Akpala Letters in Black and White, Winkfield Twyman, Jr & Jennifer Richmond The Problem with 'Black Community', Ada Akpala on the Patience Xina podcast The Equiano Project
The Legacies of Black Pioneers: Daniel Brown
Mar 26 2024
The Legacies of Black Pioneers: Daniel Brown
Welcome to our the new monthly series of the Dissidents Podcast on the legacies of black pioneers, brought to you by the Black Institute of Liberal Values (a joint project of ⁠Free Black Thought⁠ and the Institute for Liberal Values). In this episode, Winkfield Twyman, Jr & Jennifer Richmond, speak with Mark Brown on his common cousin with Wink, Daniel Brown. According to Wink, who writes of Daniel often in his book with Jen, Letters in Black and White, Daniel was a “founding father” for his family. Mark, Wink and Jen talk about the relevance of genealogy for seeing each other as “Old Americans”, the role of faith in this mission, the possibility of “Post-Traumatic Slave Syndrome”, and the curative effects of narrative therapy and writing for coming together across the color line. Follow us on Circle for more resources and materials on black pioneers in American history. Circle Institute for Liberal Values Podcast Resources: Letters in Black and White: A New Correspondence on Race in America, Jennifer Richmond & Winkfield Twyman, Jr. Find out more about the book on Truth in Between The Dead Hand of Daniel Brown, Jennifer Richmond & Winkfield Twyman, Jr. On the Road to Oak Lawn, Winkfield Twyman, Jr. Greatness as Character, Winkfield Twyman, Jr. A Race Story, Winkfield Twyman, Jr. Find other resources, including Wink’s Pioneering Black Lawyers, on the Black Institute for Liberal Values on Circle. ⁠Circle⁠
The Legacies of Black Pioneers: Lemuel Haynes
Feb 28 2024
The Legacies of Black Pioneers: Lemuel Haynes
Welcome to our the first episode of our monthly series of the Dissidents Podcast on the legacies of black pioneers, brought to you by the Black Institute of Liberal Values (a joint project of Free Black Thought and the Institute for Liberal Values). In this inaugural episode, Winkfield Twyman, Jr & Jennifer Richmond, speak with Bill Paine and Tom Miller, two descendants of the first ordained black minister, Lemuel Haynes. Jen & Wink talk about what it means for people to come together across the color line in celebration of pioneering ancestors and in community as “Old Americans”. Lemuel Haynes Resources: Sketches of the Life and Character of the Rev. Lemuel Haynes, for Many Years Pastor of a Church in Rutland, and Late in Granville, New York.  Timothy Mather Cooley. Publisher: John S. Taylor, NY. 1839 Black Puritan, Black Republican The Life and Thought of Lemuel Haynes, 1753-1833. John Saillant. Oxford University Press, 2003 Lemuel Haynes, a bio-bibliography.  Richard Newman. Lambeth, Press, NY. 1984 Black preacher to white America : the collected writings of Lemuel Haynes, 1774-1833 / edited by Richard Newman; introduction by Helen MacLam ; preface by Mechal Sobel. Haynes, Lemuel, 1753-1833. Brooklyn, N.Y. : Carlson Pub., 1989 Liberty Further Extended-https://www.jstor.org/stable/1919529 John Saillant SEA Scholar of the Month June, 2023 https://www.societyofearlyamericanists.org/whats-new-announcements/sea-scholar-of-the-month-june-2023-john-saillant   https://www.jstor.org/stable/365942 "Not Only Extreme Poverty, but the Worst Kind of Orphanage": Lemuel Haynes and the Boundaries of Racial Tolerance on the Yankee Frontier, 1770-1820 Author(s): Richard D. Brown Source: The New England Quarterly , Dec., 1988, Vol. 61, No. 4 (Dec., 1988), pp. 502-518 Published by: The New England Quarterly, Inc. https://we-ha.com/memorial-to-lemuel-haynes-dedicated-in-west-hartford/ https://granbydrummer.com/2020/08/lemuel-haynes-an-eloquent-man-of-god/ https://granbydrummer.com/2020/09/lemuel-haynes-an-eloquent-man-of-god-2/ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0AaYsRYojDc  *The Lemuel Haynes part starts at 32:28 And another small segment from West Rutland a couple years ago https://vermonthistory.org/lemuel-haynes https://jwhamil.com/Hamil/Family.htm  (Family website)   Other related resources: Discovering Black Vermont, African American Farmers in Hinesburgh, 1790-1890. Elise A. Guyette. Vermont Historical Society. 2020 The Little Professor of Piney Woods, The Story of Professor Laurence Jones. Beth Day. Julian Messner, Inc. NY. 1956 Benjamin Banneker and Us, Eleven Generations of an American Family. Rachel Jamison Webster. Henry Holt and Company. NY. 2023 Vermont African American Heritage Trail: https://www.vermontvacation.com/~/media/files/pdfs/itineraries/vermont-african-american-heritage-trail-2015.ashx?la=en