The Negro Hat

The Negro Hat: The Rise and Fall of Marcus Garvey. By Collins Grant

Redemption Song by Bob Marley

Talkin’ About a Revolution by Tracy Chapman

Fight the Power by Public Enemy

Ignorance by Paramore

Minority by Green Day


In an introduction to The Negro Hat, a vivid image of self-belief in a liberal way is painted, and how Marcus idealizes the concept of liberty from a revolutionary ide[1]The context analyzes Jim Crow’s era in the derivative approach from the theory of human freedom. Marcus is symbolized as a Pan Africanist with militia mentality through an autobiography concept. The trajectory of a tortured life as depicted in the context not only formalizes the entire slavery era in the blacks’ community but a turning point for liberation amongst the oppressed human society. Redemption song is in conjunction with the chapter. “Emancipate yourself from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our minds.” Marcus idealized the concept of overcoming slavery was by freeing one’s mind first. Mental slavery creates an imaginary boundary within an individual’s perception, portrayed as impossibility or illusion. Chapter one focuses on the works of the black nationalist at early years, on how Marcus encountered a tortured life. In spite of it all, the philanthropist overcame the encounters by attaining mental leverage. Bob insists on accomplishing mental slavery from the works of Marcus, on being free. In reality, the black community was never free, but the road to a new revolution began by freeing oneself from mental slavery.

The views depicted by Marcus towards fascism derives an intriguing theory of ‘black power.’ Marcus emphasizes on the concept of being oppressed by whites since way back. The context depicted his views on the subject as a way of sparking a new revolution. “We were training children, had 100,000 organized, disciplined men while Mussolini’s recognition did not exist”[2]. The interpretation showed how Marcus had identified the black oppression by another race in the form of enrichment for the awakening call. All Africans around the globe had to be enlightened to understand the genesis of white superiority. Tracy Chapman mentions the concept of sparking a revolution in her lines; ‘It sounds like a whisper while they’re standing in the welfare line, crying at the doorsteps of those armies of salvation, wasting time in the unemployment lines, sitting around waiting for a promotion.’ The concept explains revolutionizing the black society in the same idea as of Marcus. African Americans encountered oppression for an extended period. The persecution contained borrowed concepts and systematic thinking from the black community. In return, the case falls back as reverse psychology. Talking about a revolution highlights the possibility of sparking a revolution from such extreme measures and tolerance.

In this section, the song Fight the Power analyzes how Garvey understood the concept of slavery as a whole and its impact imposed on millions of generations. The white superiority lacked any loopholes for the oppressed community in regaining their dignity and identity[3]. The impact drastically affected the African Americans’ perception and thus lived in a reality whereby one society has to become submissive to the other. Conducting court petitions towards Jim Crow laws and the entire structure seemed a waste of time. Marcus upheld the analogy and formed numerous liberation unions and movements, but as a way of implementing military tactics towards the systems[4]. A concept of fighting back for what was stolen from the people as a tit for tat. Public Enemy borrowed the militant idea used by the pan-Africanists. Strong emphasis such as “people, people, we are the same, no we’re not the same, coz we don’t know the game.” The concept entails self-awareness of the African American community and a chance to spark a militant revolution.  Marcus theory highlighted in the line ‘gotta go for what you know’ idealizes result derived from the system whereby one society dominates the other.

The works conducted by the Ku Klux Klan were highly opposed throughout Marcus’s missions and helpful strategies. Most of what was idealized were the concept of black torture. Paramore’s song Ignorance introduces the context. Grievances towards the scene escalated into what was depicted as a racial profiling concept with permissions from the authority. Marcus emphasized the killing of black people was an upgraded and fancy lynching style. The lyrics in Ignorance depicts the gruesome response of an oppressed person; ‘you’re not a judge, but if you’re going to judge me, well sentence me too another life’. In a cognitive analysis towards the ideologies imposed by the system during Marcus time, the racial degrading by some whites depicted the wrong side of humanity. In return, militant attacks from the oppressed were portrayed all over the affected parts. An individual is better of the dead rather than becoming a slave to a fellow human being. However, profiling individual and imposing death unto the victims shows human beings playing god.

Liberal movements in the last chapters depict the atonement of self-reclamation of Marcus, and the black community as a whole. I introduce the section with the song Minority by Green Day. In as much as strong emphasis on sparkling a revolution was placed into context, Marcus attained reclamation outside the current world. Most black lacked mental freedom and thus suffered severely with the hopes of fitting into Jim Crow’s system. Garvey enraged the compelling structures that seemed fatal and sparked a movement that was based on empowering the black community[5]. ‘Like a sheep running from the herd, marching out of time.’ The robust emphasis ascertains awakening of one’s soul in the sense that liberalization ceases to exist without bits of oppression.



Grant, Colin. Negro with a hat: The rise and fall of Marcus Garvey. Oxford University Press, 2008.

Lawler, Mary, and John Davenport. Marcus Garvey: black nationalist leader. Infobase Publishing, 2009.

[1]a Colin, Grant, Negro with a hat: The rise and fall of Marcus Garvey, Oxford University Press, 2008.

[2] Colin, Grant, Negro with a hat: The rise and fall of Marcus Garvey, Oxford University Press, 2008.


[3] Mary, Lawler, and John Davenport, Marcus Garvey: black nationalist leader, Infobase Publishing, 2009.


[4] Colin, Grant, Negro with a hat: The rise and fall of Marcus Garvey, Oxford University Press, 2008.


[5] Mary, Lawler, and John Davenport, Marcus Garvey: black nationalist leader, Infobase Publishing, 2009