Revolution #230, April 24, 2011

April 11 Celebration:
What People Are Saying...

A team from Revolution interviewed people in the audience at the April 11 program, to find out what brought them to the event and what they thought about the performances and the whole amazing evening. The following is what we heard from some of the people the team talked to, before and after the event. Thanks to all those interviewed and everyone who volunteered to conduct and transcribe the interviews.

30ish Black woman

Revolution: How did you learn about the event, and what made you decide to attend?

Through one of the artists that's displaying their work here.

Revolution: What were you expecting about the event? Was there anything that surprised you?

It was very surprising. The performances were… I learned a lot about Bob Avakian, who I did not know, what he was able to accomplish, and the fact that here's this white man doing all this work, that was very surprising. But it was very knowledgeable, and I want to, you know, become more conscious because of this.

Revolution: What did you think of the performances?

They were, like…I was taken aback. Seriously, taken aback. These people did their thing on the stage, it was wonderful to see.

Revolution: What effect do you think this event will have, or hope it will have?

I hope it'll inspire more people to learn, learn more about the mission and what they're trying to accomplish, and help spread the word. I think it's a powerful message that you're conveying here. And I think it'll be great if more of society will learn more about it. Like, i.e., me, for example. If this hadn't happened I would not have known about this guy or what the mission is about at all.


Asian-American university student, studying philosophy

Revolution: How did you learn about the event?

I just got a flyer [on campus].

Revolution: So what interested you about the event, that you decided to come?

I've been interested in this philosophy, actually. But I've never really been involved in a political movement. So, it was pretty interesting, I thought. I wanted to see what it would be like to be with like-minded people.

Revolution: When you say "this philosophy," you're talking about communism?


Revolution: What is it that has attracted you or interested you about it?

It's just an alternative, I guess. And I'm thinking that it might give me some answers, and it might provide something better than what we have now. I'm always searching for the truth, I guess.

Revolution: Had you heard about this leader, Bob Avakian, before this?

No, I haven't.

Revolution: People have been out at various campuses a lot with this event, and other things.

Is that right? Yeah, you know, I got my head in my books, I go between library and class, I don't really hang around. So I was really lucky to have found this.

Revolution: What did you think about the event tonight?

It was interesting. It was a lot of fun. It was more like a cultural entertainment type event. And I wasn't sure what I was really getting myself into. But man, the four acts, it really went by quickly. So, it was good.

Revolution: Was there anything in particular in the program that really struck you?

Yes, I really enjoyed the, I think it was testimonials from prison, their reading. I thought that was well done. It was almost theatrical in a way, like a play. So I really enjoyed that.

Revolution: So you're going to stay in touch?

Yeah, definitely. I'm going to check out the bookstore. Come to events.

Revolution: You've gotten the BAsics book?

A: Yes.


Young Latina (interview originally in Spanish)

Revolution: How was the event?

A very moving event. I thought it was well organized, because the book touches on different points and seeing so many people coming together to celebrate something, because really in the midst of so many things happening in the world, you have to get involved, you have to be part of the movement about what is happening right now. It's real great that so many people have come together here.

Revolution: Are you reading BAsics?

I'm trying to read it. I bought it yesterday and I've been real busy working on the event. And when I was in Revolution Books, I got a copy and started to read it, but I am real familiar with the author, Bob Avakian, because my dad was owner of a bookstore.

Revolution: Have you read Avakian before?

Yes. This book and other books, and also I have seen a lot of quotes in videos. On the web pages that are aimed at videos. He has more than 20 videos, the Revolution Books page, there is a particular video where he talks about how women are treated in this society. It's hard hearing him talk about this because it's true.

Revolution: Do you remember what he said in the video?

The different ways in which on a daily basis women are abused in society, whether due to crimes against them or the simple choice of living in a world controlled by men. There are so many ways to act and the world is not so free. And for me it was really a shock to hear it, but it's a necessary shock so I can be able to change what we are seeing. Sorry I got a little off track from the question.

Revolution: After what you saw tonight, how do you feel about what you just talked about?

It not only was a show but given the unity in organizing the event and participating in it is a very positive experience in the face of the changes that are happening, but also what is coming into being.


A couple in early 30s

Revolution: What did you think about the event?

Woman: I thought it was exciting, great cultural event. It makes you want to read the book. That was the desired effect.

Man: It was exciting. It was one of the more exciting things I've seen from the Party. I would like to see more.

Revolution: Was there something in the program that struck you in particular?

Man: Richard Brown for me. I just started to tear up when he came out, and I was just like, oh man.

Woman: To see the diversity of people was inspiring.

Man: Diversity of people within the movement. I guess I've always seen rallies where it's just mostly maybe young students with older people on the fringes. But this was very diverse.

Woman: Diverse people within and also around—supportive of, not necessarily in the movements or in the Party.


Young white student

Revolution: How did you learn about the event, and how did you come to attend?

A friend told me about it. And I was interested, because I always think about things like this. So I just came to see what you guys have to say. And I liked it, I enjoyed it.

Revolution: When you say you're interested in things like this, what in particular about this event made you want to come?

Well, from the little bit that I knew about the event, it was basically about trying to see things differently, and trying to change people's minds about a lot of things that are happening right now. So that's what made me want to come. Because I wanted to see what other people had to think, and I wanted to see what other people around me had to think. So I figured it was a good place to come and learn. So I just came.

Revolution: Had you heard about Bob Avakian before?

No, I never have. Which I'm really interested about, because I'm dying to see what he has to say.

Revolution: What did you think about the event?

It was great. I liked a lot of the arts, because I'm an artist myself so I really appreciate and I understand it.

Revolution: What kind of art?

I'm a dancer. So I like the fact that they were trying to send a good message, but also give a different side of it, which is the arts, so I liked it a lot, I liked the combination.

Revolution: Was there anything that defied your expectations, that you weren't expecting?

Not really, because like I said I'm already involved. I'm involved in learning and trying to seek different experiences. I'm always around stuff like this. So nothing was shocking to me because I'm already around it. But I'm sure I'm gonna learn some new stuff from this [pointing to BAsics]. I haven't learned enough, so I want to read this.


40ish Black woman

Revolution: What were you expecting coming into the event, and what do you think now?

I liked it, I liked it. I felt the ending could've been a little tighter, you know. But it was free style. I loved Outernational. I loved the singers, spoken word, everybody…I loved it all. Because I'm familiar with everybody. I loved it all.

Revolution: Had you heard about Bob Avakian before this?


Revolution: So what's your view of Avakian?

I like him. I've always liked him. I've always felt that, you know, he's always been consistent. There's a lot of people…I mean, both my parents were Black Panthers. He's somebody who I've always heard about over the years and learned about over the years. He's always been consistent in terms of his views and in terms of the struggle. So, yeah, I'm a strong supporter of Bob Avakian, and he's a strong supporter of us. So I'm definitely…as they say in Facebook, like or unlike, I like him.

Revolution: What do you think about Carl Dix's message from the stage about getting into the BAsics book, and getting it out there in society…

Yes, I think it's important. And I think that,my generation, unfortunately, has become quite passive, and not involved and not active. I grew up in a very active, aggressive, progressive household. So it's difficult to be part of a generation that's not, that's lacking care and concern. But I guess it's gonna take someone like Bob Avakian to get the light under them, you know?


Young man

Revolution: How did you learn about the event, and come to attend?

I was doing some research online, basically searching for the truth. I came across the Revolutionary news. Read a couple of articles. Once I read couple of those articles, it opened up my eyes. Once it opened up my eyes, it kept me searching for more. Because I was seeking the truth, I couldn't find it nowhere else. Continue seeking it, continue seeking it. Seek and ye shall find. I see, ok, there was a revolutionary rally going on. I said, perfect, this is what I want to be about. Because I feel that there is a necessary change that needs to take place. There's a cover-up that's going on. There's a big conspiracy that's going down. And it's right in front of our eyes. Our minds are kind of like mentally enslaved. So when I saw the opportunity to come to this place, I said, this would be an opportunity for myself to express myself also, in my creative abilities, that I see that the world needs to change, and my vision is also aligned with the vision of the revolutionary. However, I believe in god, and they're materialists. But it doesn't matter, because we need to come together for the cause of overthrowing the government that's here now, that's oppressing us, establishing a new government, and working out the kinks from there. Overall, I think this was an inspiring, liberating, and informing event that needs to take place more, and we need it more widespread, we need more exposure. This is what I'm here for. Because I'm here to align myself as an artist, as a younger generation, about the fight the power movement. Because it's not over. They try to say that the civil rights era, all of that is over. No, all of these guys had a bigger conviction that they stood for. And you see from the results of what they produced, what their conviction was. And I align myself with that, that's how I identify the purpose in that. I have a conviction also.

Revolution: You're a spoken word artist?


Revolution: In the event itself, was there something that really struck you or surprised you or inspired you?

Absolutely. The saxophonist?

Revolution: David Murray.

David Murray. Incredible. This is my first time ever coming to a live playing. And I was just able to read the story in his head when he was playing, and it was just incredible. It was my first time experiencing it. It was spiritually uplifting. It was open, you know what I'm saying? Because I'm watching, and I'd never seen this before, and I'm able to play out his story in his head that he was playing 'cause he's telling a story in his music. So it was good.

Revolution: Off of this event, you want to get into the book BAsics?

Absolutely. Absolutely. Because myself, also, is a revolutionary. Like I said, Bob Avakian, he's been doing this for years. So he has way more insight and knowledge. I'm only 26 years old. He's been in it from the '60s, the nitty and the gritty. So he has more knowledge and insight than me. However, I wouldn't doubt myself, because we continue and improve every day. So if I could improve on what he has there, also contribute to it, I think that we have a prosperous future, that's what I say.


Young Black man

Revolution: How did you learn about this event?

I actually learned about it from Outernational. It was on their Facebook page.

Revolution: So what did you think about the event?

Unfortunately, I missed three-fourths of the performances. This is the third time I've missed Outernational. I've never seen them play. What I saw of the event was pretty good. I only caught three performances. Carl Dix, actually, his piece was pretty riveting. I like what he had to say. He was very clear about his message about people getting involved, which is, I guess daunting for a few people because they feel like they're going at it alone. And I'm sure that's something he went through, and many others in the struggle.

Revolution: I see you got the BAsics book.

Yeah, I got the BAsics book. Thinking about getting another, or maybe getting a different book.

Revolution: Getting another copy of BAsics for…

Yeah, possibly for a prisoner. I heard that you can buy another for a prisoner for the same price.

Revolution: This will be a great intro to Bob Avakian.

Yeah, I'm gonna check it out, and hopefully buy another one.


Young Latino dancer

Revolution: What did you think of this whole night?

I think the event was really amazing. An array of different artists, different genres of music and styles. I was part of Maluca, so I was dancing with her. So we kind of brought this tropical punk, sort of hip hop style to the event, which we're honored. It was a lot of fun. Yeah, we're here for a reason, revolution.


50-60ish Black woman

Revolution: How did you learn about the event?

A neighbor told me about it.

Revolution: And what inspired you to come?

The whole idea of change. Positive change. I mean I'm a person who's always been involved in struggle.

Revolution: What were you expecting about the event? What surprised you?

Actually, I've been living in Washington, DC. I've recently come to understand that politics in DC is about positioning, ok? People just want to be in the position that they want to be in. And I came here…I didn't really know what to expect. But what I found was that the art was at a higher level than I expected, which was very gratifying to me because I'm a vocalist, and I was going like, ok, I wonder what this is gonna be—I'm gonna support it, but wonder what it is. So I was pleasantly surprised.

Revolution: Had you heard about Bob Avakian before?

Probably somewhere along the line, I'm sure I had. Because like I said, I've been very close to the struggle. I was not in the Panther Party, but I certainly had friends that were, couple of close friends that were. And I worked closely helping the Panther 8 in New Haven, CT. So I'm sure his name crossed my path.

Revolution: Are you going to check out the book?

I bought it, yeah. I'm definitely gonna check it out. Try to understand what the movement is, then assess how far that it can go, and what it might need to take the next step.


Black woman college student

Revolution: What did you think about the event?

I was blown away. Blown away! I feel really excited about getting involved with the Party. Getting involved with the revolution. I came here already feeling that I wanted to be involved. But now I feel really, really motivated.

Revolution: Were there things in the event that were outside your expectations?

Absolutely. When I heard the gentleman from the Last Poets, I was blown away by his analysis of America. I was blown away by Richard Brown. I think it was Richard Brown that got me to realize the importance of taking action, taking constructive action, not just waiting around for some other person or some other group to get active, but to take responsibility myself to get active.

Revolution: Have you been able to get into BAsics yet? What do you think of the book?

Yes. I think that Bob Avakian has an incredible knack for taking complex ideas and breaking them down in a way so that they are accessible to regular everyday people. That being said, I read several quotes to students at my school. And as soon as they heard them, they started buying the book. It's hot.

Revolution: Which particular quotes did you use?

I used 1 and 2 from Chapter 1 – America would not be America without slavery, and then he goes further to talk about the theft of land from the indigenous people, and imperialism, capitalism. And just his straightforward analysis—he's saying things that I already thought and believed, that I've heard my family members and friends say, but the talking heads, they never say these things. So just hearing it, plain, straightforward, has inspired me to say, you know what, that's what I was thinking, that's what I believe. And I'm not crazy, I'm not the only one. Now here's a group of people who feel the way I feel, I'm gonna get involved with them.

Revolution: Your experience of taking it out to other people is very important.

Absolutely. One of the things I'm very critical of…let's say of the civil rights movement…they sort of kept the movement to themselves. I don't think they really passed it on or got younger people involved in a meaningful way. I think that that's where…or I would hope that's where the Revolutionary Communist Party would be very different, in inspiring young people to get involved. And empowering young people to get involved and make whatever contribution they're able to make, to value their contribution, and allow space for younger people to come in.


Young Latino (interview originally in Spanish)

Revolution: We're here with a compañero who is visiting New York, here with his girlfriend. And we want to know how… what do you think about the program?

Well, I came here with my girlfriend in Harlem, to Aaron Davis Hall. And it looked real interesting to me. That's why we decided to come, um, to see. I didn't know there was an organized revolutionary movement here. And this was real interesting for me.

Revolution: What do you think about the atmosphere, the program, the scene?

I liked the program a lot. I liked the poems a lot. They seemed real good and also of a high quality. And I think the purpose, the ideal is real good, the program and the music are also really great.

Revolution: Are you familiar with Bob Avakian?

No. When I saw about the program, I decided to come. Look, I don't know much about Avakian, he seemed interesting to me, but I didn't know about him before… My girlfriend has given me some materials here and there, I think from the Internet.


Young woman

I'm loud mouthed and revolutionary and I'm incredibly optimistic and I try to do, you know, for the best.

Revolution: What did you think of the event?

I actually loved it. I enjoyed it so much because I have never actually participated in some sort of movement within the United States. And my family themselves, you could say they're communists or revolutionaries. It does run in our blood for sure. But within the context of the United States I've never actually been surrounded by a group people that believe the same thing that I do, so it's nice to hear people actually speak about it and just to have everyone together and be in support of this sort of movement.

Revolution: So you've never been a part of anything like this before?

No, not at all.

Revolution: Can you describe a little bit more of how you felt about the event?

It feels like hope. That's honestly what it feels like. Growing up I've always had these sort of ideals and then in high school I was really trying to push them forward and everyone would always try to shut me up or ignore me because everyone either dismissed it completely and said the system that we lived in was fine or just didn't want to get in trouble. But just being around everyone, and hearing and seeing, I just felt immense hope. This is just a small room and a small group of people, but in the wider America and the wider world there's people just like us. And the point is to connect and unite and to bring the word forward.

Revolution: So did this inspire you to think about dedicating your life to something?

Actually this didn't. I've been inspired already! I've been wanting to dedicate my life to this! And what this did was push me forward even more. I'm glad I came.


Two college students

Student 1: Last year we went to the dialogue between Cornel West and Carl Dix. And I ran into Carl and he told me about BAsics so I got in touch with you over at Revolution Books and I got some flyers and handed them out at school and promoted it on site.  So, basically I just wanted to get people to be open to the idea of revolution. If you don't have a political base that's ok, it's about if you feel're living in society and you have no idea what to do about it and at least these are people who have an ideal...

Revolution: Can you expand on this thing of "You encounter things that you never encountered before"?

Student 1: There was the gentleman from Last Poets – I forget his name... his piece blew my mind...the understanding that America's corrupt. We understand that but we don't really know the extent to which things have been done in this country. So the idea that these small Black communities—was it Alabama?—the government blew them up. And these are things that people never hear about. I mean, that goes into "the lies my teacher told me." I had no idea—they tell you one thing, but this is the real story. And it blew my mind because I had no idea, and I turned to my coworker and said, "Did you know about this?" And she said, "No I had no idea we're going to go and look it up." And that way people get educated and open their eyes. I didn't know very much about Bob Avakian's life until today so this gave me an opportunity really to learn about him and find out who he was…and I am thoroughly impressed, and thoroughly involved with the way that sort of charisma that makes him readable. We don't want someone who seems tired. We want a leader that might be able to remind you of want a leader that you can reach...and Bob Avakian has that charismatic personality where he can tell you this is what I believe on the world today, and he makes it available and he makes it funny, which is really difficult because it is a really painful realities that rule and he explains it in a way that helps you better understand the need for revolution and if anything makes you hungrier for it.

Student 2: There are certain documentaries that when you watch them and you hear the music and you want to go out and do something right afterwards – or the next day. But, at least at the end of the day you get a sense that it can be utilized – there is no powerlessness there. We are all powerful in our own right.

Revolution: And did it make you guys actually want to take out...You know part of Carl Dix's  message at the end was, Get in...and take this out to your friends?

Student 2: Oh we are definitely going to spread the message. Definitely.


Young Black man

I'm an artist and an activist on police brutality issues and an educator and a fire-starter.

Revolution: So what did you think of tonight?

It was great; it was beautiful. I really liked the eclectic mix of different types of art, different types of artists, different types of expression; I especially liked the saxophonist going crazy, almost blew my brains out. It was amazing, it was a beautiful show of revolutionary artists and revolutionary expression out here, definitely a motivating night. Keep moving forward in the struggle.

Revolution: Were you expecting something like this?

I didn't know what to expect, but I always know that the Party brings out the hot shit, excuse me [laughs]. But it's always gonna be a good event and there's always gonna be good people, and you know I think revolution really brings out the most exciting art because revolutionary minded artists are the ones who really bring it to that next level of breaking the status quo, and society-wise they are breaking with it, and artistically, and in all types of ways. So it's always a good time. I knew it was going to be good.

Revolution: Have you picked up BAsics, or did it make you actually want to pick it up?

I will definitely read it. I love to read and find new information. I had one quarter in my pocket when I came here and I donated all 100% of my money into the donations bin. So unless you wanna give me the book for my 25 cents, I can't get it tonight; but, I will be sure to pick a copy up.

Revolution: What was the highlight of the evening?

Highlight, for me… I liked the letters from the prisoners. I liked the way that was done. The letters from the prisoners and the way they mixed it up like that. You know, all the artists were dope, but I especially like hearing the voices of people who are in the thick of the shit and really caught up in the belly of the beast and still really fighting towards revolution.

Revolution: Was there something in particular in the letters that moved you?

I think just the simple fact that people are behind the walls, and I know about the ban on the paper going into a lot of prisons. That's where a lot of people end up at regardless of if you're good or bad; that's not what puts people in prison. And people end up going to jail off of the basic needs that they aren't having met by society. And a lot of people don't really recognize what the problems are and who the real enemies are before they go into the system and see it first-hand. I really get inspired by people behind the walls bringing forward that voice.


Black woman

It was very well put together, it was fast-moving. The pace was great. It was entertaining. The artists were marvelous. And how it integrated the education and message with the art. It was very well done.

Revolution: So you can say it WAS a celebration of revolution…

It was. It was not only a celebration, it was an education. That's powerful. It wasn't just a lecture. You could learn a lot. How you do it through music, through art. You remember more—I will… The Bangladesh story was marvelous. The poetry. The Avakian quotes from BAsics. And I bought the BAsics, and I bought the t-shirt.


White woman, rock music journalist

Revolution: What did you think of tonight?

I thought it was great. I've been following Outernational, one of the performers tonight, for a really long time now. It's amazing for them to collaborate with a bunch of other artists on the stage for something they believe so wholeheartedly. It was a beautiful rendition of their song, so it was very nice to see them up on the stage doing what they love, and representing what they love.

Revolution: What did you think of some of the things that were being put forward about Bob Avakian and BAsics?

Well, I have to admit that I'm not very educated in this realm. So for me it was a very informative session, kind of a [laughs] basic session of ideas, everything that was underlined all night. So yeah, it was informative, a good basis to understand what people are talking about.

Revolution: Was there something you were expecting when you came here?

I knew about it a few weeks ago, maybe a month ago. But just through the band Outernational, so I was kind of expecting like a normal kind of musical performance. Then I realized about a week ago that it was a lot more than a music thing. Obviously it had to do with the revolution, book, like that. But I didn't know it was actually a collaboration with other artists and poets. So it was a surprise to have a variety of artists, diverse people.

Revolution: What about this thing about "celebration of revolution and the vision of a new world"?

Like I said, there was a diverse community of artists and people performing. It was a good way to celebrate because it touched upon all the ways that you can spread a message and get heard in the world, through writing, in poetry, speaking, music especially, dance—those are all very powerful forms of expression. I think it was a good way to celebrate and also to do what they had intended to do, which is either to get people to get curious about it, or people who were already informed, more into it and motivated to get involved with it. But for me, it was very much kind of an educational experience…so it was an informative and good night.


White college student

Revolution: Can you tell me what you thought of the program, what you took away from it?

I thought it was very enlightened.

Revolution: How so?

Well, I didn't know the scope of the struggle. And it just made me more aware of what people have done, what the situation is, and where we're headed.

Revolution: Were there any performances in particular that really just etched something in your memory, delighted you…

I really liked the cartoons [by Ted Rall]. Cartoons are really fun.

Revolution: Are you a college student?

Yes, I'm a student, I'm a senior.

Revolution: Did you hear about it on campus?



Young white man

Revolution: What did you think of the program? How did it impact you?

I thought it was fantastic. It was a mixture of lot of different cultural elements that I thought were progressive and cutting edge, and some things that were more traditional. Some things that were based on more pop music that were based on sort of like more standard folk music. With Outernational, had a more basis of traditional Chicano or Latino flavors but it was a little bit more modernized, had electric bass and stuff like that. The music was all great. All the musical performers were amazing. The one great thing about tonight, there's two characters I always love to see. I love to see Carl Dix, because he's a fantastic revolutionary. And the gentleman, Mr. Brown, the fellow with the dreadlocks. The gentleman who was the Black Panther. Richard Brown. He's phenomenal. He's been out here fighting this shit for 50 years. What he said was really inspiring. If we want to get this book BAsics out to people and we want to inspire a new generation of revolutionaries to get involved and get out active, this movement for revolution, that's not going to happen without the aid of older, wiser revolutionaries, you know what I mean? And to be able to see a collection of, a mixture of, old and young here tonight, that being sort of represented was really powerful and positive thing. It's good to see that we still have the asset of people that have so much experience, on our side, ready to bring that towards a new generation of people in conjunction with this book.


Young woman from Spain

I like so much the program, the show.

Revolution: What especially?

Everything. But I like the readings, the poetry. I was crying.

Revolution: Which readings made you cry?

All of them. I like all of them. All the readings. And the readings of the book, and the poetry, and the music…

Revolution: Where did you learn about the event?

Because I found the store, Revolution Books. It's near to my school, my English school. So I found the store, and I read about the event. And I like Harlem… And I thought, I have to go.

Revolution: What memories and emotions and thoughts do you think you're going to take away from this?

Hope. Sí, hope, yeah. I heard a lot of things that is always in my mind. A lot of things that I feel inside. So I was crying because I thought, look, I think the same way. And I think about this all the time. Yeah, it was very moving for me.


Latino musician/educator from Texas

Revolution: I was just wondering what drew people to the event, what people were expecting.

Well, I'm a musician. I used to live here in New York City… I actually was invited here to meet with [an] agent…about doing some work in France. But, I've been to Revolution Books a bunch of times, and it's part of this milieu. So after our meeting I am going to be staying for this event. I thought we were just meeting to talk about some business, and walk into this, and this is something which if I did live in the city, it would have been on my radar and I would have come here intentionally anyway… This kind of thing, it might happen every once in a while in Texas, but it's very rare, you know, just given the history of antagonism towards the left and progressive thought, and people organizing. It's a very hostile place. But New York is a very hostile place too, but there is a critical mass of people who keep the fires lit both on the organizational end and the artistic end, and institutions such as CUNY and this Aaron Davis hall. It's special that this is happening and we shouldn't take it for granted. As dark as things are, the fact that we can even get together and organize here and see what possibilities come of it is a profound thing.

Revolution: Had you heard about the event in Texas, or up here?

No here. Yeah, some friends, actually my friend Paula Henderson is a baritone sax player who is performing tonight. We've played, and performed together a bunch of times. I read about the event on Facebook as well.


Two women from a NYC suburb

Revolution: Your thoughts on the event, what moved you?

First woman: All I can say is that I was just totally blown away by the whole thing. I had never heard about it. So I had no expectations whatsoever what it would be like. But it was wonderful. And I feel enlightened by the book, that I'm going to read, like a bible, right? And this guy, Bob, I'm sorry I never met him. I really am. This "white boy." [laughs]

Revolution: How did you hear about it?

First woman: This young lady. We came from X…

Second woman: When we were at the Schomburg for the Women's History Month, in fact it might've been the Maggie Brown show, people were handing out the notices about it. So we decided we would come. We were going somewhere else so we stopped at the bookstore and got the tickets to come here tonight.

Revolution: Did you have anything to add to what your friend was saying?

Second woman: No more than what she does, the Black Panthers and all that. But I really believe this, that time is long overdue to do something, because it's not getting any better. And certainly looking like it's getting a whole lot worse.

Revolution: What are you taking away from this program?

First woman: I'm taking away the fear that if things don't change, if there is no revolution, then I pity the people that will still be here. I don't truly believe that revolution will come in my time, but I do believe it'll come in my great-nephew's time. He's nine. [laughs] Because, you know, it's going to take more people that have the knowledge of what's needed. I don't think it's here on a mass scale.


Two community college students

Student 1: I thought it was great. The ideas and all the performers were great. I especially liked Bengali storyteller, and the bass and piano player, those guys were my favorites. And that group, what was it, Maluca, with the two dancers and the girl in the middle. They were great too, I really liked that performance.

Revolution: Any thoughts and memories and things that you are taking away, that jumped out at you, that peaked your interest.

Student 1: I was talking before with one of the women taking donations. I really enjoyed the event and everybody in it. I just wish more people my age would come as audience members and get more involved. I feel like maybe like when older people speak of the '60s, and like past pushes for like social change, that they had such a much bigger young community that was able to go out and you know they had the time because they were either in school. Now it's just a couple of faces here and there, a little bit. I think I would like to know information on how to get people my age together to care more about the things that are going on in the world.

Revolution: Did you think the message from the young person with cancer during the program spoke to that a little?

Student 2: If it was done right.

Revolution: What do you mean?

Student 2: If it was done right, cause him and me already tried. People always look at me like I'm a little odd, a little weird because they don't live in that world. They live in a world that has nothing to do with thinking, nothing to do with things. They live in a world just trying to survive.  So me and him try to spread the word, they look at me like I'm a little funny, like he's a little crazy.

Revolution: It doesn't seem to bother you too much.

Student 2: It doesn't. But like he said, it kind of bothers him too and a little bit. The only thing that bothers us is the fact that you don't want to hear, don't want to listen.

Student 1: And it's harder to stay faithful to it when nobody's giving you any positive responses, you know. I am still definitely for changes. I think we have to change. But I think the people my age, in my age group, they're not seeing the bigger picture. They are just seeing individual selfish ideas, and going to school for a career that's gonna make the money and not for helping people or helping the world in any way… I just wish I could be part of a generation that was for more, that had more input about what's going on in the world.

Revolution: Did the program give you any optimism? That that could be brought about.

Student 1: Yes, definitely. I saw that there's other people that, you know, care, that was my age…


A compañero who is unemployed (interview originally in Spanish)

Revolution: We're here with a compañero who has come to the event. We want to know how… You were telling me you are unemployed, but anyway you have come to the event. How did you hear about the event?

I heard about the event through a friend and on WBAI. It's a radio station out there, it's revolutionary and they are always announcing all kinds of events happening. Like professor Cornel West, and he is real interesting. Also there's the latest book that Avakian wrote, which is called the BAsics. I want to know if there is a summation of this book. If they are going to sum it up, who is going to sum it up. Everybody is talking about it. The thing is, you gotta check out a lot of things. Like the most basic thing for me is Marxism. It's a real right on point of view, it's real progressive…

Revolution: And now you've started with Avakian, right? You have read…

Look, first, I read the autobiography. And then… I have a lot of questions about white people… But I read it… I was into the part where he hooks up with Black people, with the Black Panthers. I met those people, I met Bobby Seale here at the time of the Young Lords. When I was 21, in the Bronx I heard him. Then, this kid, Avakian… OK, this guy, Avakian [laughs]. Avakian is my contemporary. But "he sounds right here." This is very important, he's very honest. And there's this thing that he has, he has a sense of humor. Yes, inside of his seriousness. The guy has a sense of humor. This is for real, a lot of older people don't. There's no hypocrisy. And then I was saying to myself, and this is coming from a white person. That's real hard to do. I was looking at him, analyzing him. OK, you know. I saw him in the "videotapes." What I see is this Avakian is "real," very "real."


Black man, 67, recently laid off from a hospital

I had attend a filming at the Maysle's Cinema a couple of weeks ago. And I had met these brothers—they told me about this and had tickets, so I bought a ticket, that was two weeks ago…

Revolution: So what was it that piqued your interest most?

Well I'd heard of Bob Avakian, but I had never really read anything. But then Cornel West…these jazz performers, it sounded like it was going to be a nice mix, and I'm excited about it.

Revolution: Yes, a celebration of revolution and vision of the future. What are you looking forward to the most tonight?

I'm just open to the whole idea of change and alternative. Because currently, I got laid off after 22 years at [the hospital], unemployed, getting Social Security… So, you know, I'm involved. I just turned 67 in January so it's time for me…

Revolution: So is there something in particular you're looking forward to?

I'm looking for a wonderful evening of ideas and thoughts and communication, all of it. I will be digesting it all.


White woman with Gaza t-shirt, from a NYC suburb

Well, I'm a long-time activist from everywhere, South Africa, Chile, right on through, Indian Point, all over the country. So I'm constantly interested in ways to make this country better, and at this point I think that revolution is gonna be the only way that that happens.

Revolution: Can I ask how you heard of this event?

Yeah, I heard of this event because I get the little news things from Revolution Books. So I get a weekly, or every two weeks I get a reminder about an event that's going on down there.

Revolution: Do you go to most of them?

No, I live in X, so I go to very few of them, but you know, I like to see what's going on.

Revolution: So what drew you to this one in particular?

I read the whole statement. I was handed it at one of the demonstrations I went to, that two-page flier thing, and I totally agreed with everything that was said. Then I saw that it was like a celebration, and I felt like I needed a little uplifting since things are so bad lately…well not bad, but changing, maybe not bad, maybe good [laughs].

Revolution: Changing, that's for sure, but what direction, that's the question.

Yeah, that's the question… Anything that stirs things up is positive, so I'm glad about that. So I wanted to be part of the celebration, hear more about what was going on, and what options are being presented.

Revolution: Have you heard much about Bob Avakian before this event?

I have heard of him, obviously, but I have never heard him speak.


Black man from Boston

Revolution: Maybe you could give a brief description of yourself.

I came down specifically to see the show and the artists coming together at a very critical time and to talk about again, to try to beef up the hope machine, but the hope machine isn't gonna work out. This Party has the means to really inspire people, and raise the sights over the current one. There's basically nothing from the bourgeoisie. I think if we can get…we need to get people to inspire people and have more programs like this, and have a lot more discussion and dialogue, and do this through the newspaper and the website, and see what they can do to have something like this in other parts of the country and the world, really, cause the United States has nothing good for the world except for more, more poverty and more of the same. Obama or any other candidate frankly is indistinguishable from Bush or any other candidate and that's the way business is done. We need to have more programs like this, programs to inspire people, and really raise the bar.

Revolution: What especially inspired you in this program?

The youth, the multicultural theme, and the artwork, and the dance troop, and the jazz, and Bob's immortal words, and how they are…how these inspire a new generation, to really get it out, that this movement cares about the people. It's really not a flash in the pan, fly by night… The system invites people in and then spits em out. This movement doesn't do that. This movement really puts people on the stage to get rid of this rotten system. Not just here but all over the world, with a world to win. And it's important cause we do have a world to win. We don't need to rescue the capitalist system. We don't need to regulate the capitalist system. We need to raise our sights and defeat the system. We don't need to collaborate with the people who run the system. It's not the way things are done anyway. They wouldn't want…the system wouldn't want people to change it. This whole thing about money is debasing and outrageous. This really raises the bar.


Anthropology student (interview originally in Spanish)

Revolution: Can you begin telling us what you do? You were saying you are a student?

Yes, I'm a student. I'm studying for a Masters in Anthropology.

Revolution:  How did you find out about the event?

I heard about the event through the bookstore, Revolution Books in New York. I'm interested in knowing how the event comes out, who comes, what they are gonna do, what they are gonna say. Things like that.

Revolution: What do you think about the atmosphere, the scene, all the artists, the mix of all kinds of people…

It's a gathering of artists. I think it's a good mix of artists, for different tastes and styles, tastes, etc. I think that the purpose is really very good, to bring all kinds of people to a very important event, which is part of a necessary process in this country, of opening the eyes of people, so they begin to think, and to think critically about the situation being experienced in this country, and all around the world, and of the possibilities and particularly the possibility that Bob Avakian talks to us about regarding a communist future.

Revolution: OK. Well, I can see you're already a bit more familiar with Avakian. What can you say about that?

Of course, I have read some of his writings. And I have seen some of his videos.

Revolution: Like what videos… And what writings?

Let's see, the writings…Old Communism Is Dead… Long Live New Communism!, or something like that. Another is about religion, Away With All Gods! And the one that this event is celebrating, which is BAsics by Bob Avakian, which is a compendium of different statements that Mr. Avakian has made.


Victor Toro, Chilean exile and immigrant-rights activist who is facing deportation [see article about his case on]. (Interview originally in Spanish.)

Revolution: Here we are, celebrating BAsics, and the revolution and the vision of a new world…

First, I want to thank you for this invitation because I have seen an extraordinary show, one more example that art and music are inseparable from the revolutionary struggle of the people and, well, for me this has been a great lesson. I congratulate the organizers of this show because this is joy, magic/song, music, folklore of the people. This is not something off to the side. You have to be committed to social demands, to the struggle of the working class, and to the ongoing revolution. So, thank you for having invited me.

Revolution: Thank you for being here, for what you have been doing all this time fighting for revolution to change all this for real. Now, what do you think about Avakian  and his work?

Well, here is an example that in the United States, in the belly of the beast, as we call it, there are revolutionary organizations like the Revolutionary Communist Party, like these organizations which don't give any respite to imperialism, which fight it on all fronts, in the unions, in the hoods, in the street, and also through the music, through the different cultural, multicultural, multiethnic, multiracial expressions which exist here and which is united with the struggle of the people, the fight of the people who are marginalized here in this country, in the United States, which sooner or later we are going to bring about a process of liberation right here. You can't lose hope in this and I think that the struggle of the immigrants contributes to this whole process. And the struggle of the people who live in the hoods which is where we work like in the South Bronx, is also a contribution to the big process of liberation which sooner or later will have to rise here in the belly of the world.


Latino (interview originally in Spanish)

They began and they ended with a sound that encapsulated everything. The totality encapsulated in the sound, the saxophone and the mega-saxophone. Awesome. It was a show which really showed the unity of the people, the unity of the artists, a very well-done message, a very well-consolidated and very well-focused message about the need to make revolution, the desire to make revolution, and the possibility to make revolution, and it was also a very emotional thing, but not only emotional but also intellectual which provoked us intellectually and moves emotionally everyone that is here. And I hope that this book BAsics by Bob Avakian becomes the new Red Book of the revolutionary youth all over the world.

Revolution: Given that you've read some of Avakian and know more about him, what do you say about tonight, what are you going to take home?

I'm not going to take the new book, because I have already read it and I have heard what is talked about, what is said in the videos of Avakian, in the words of Avakian, I have already heard them, I already knew them, what they talked about in this event. But what I'm taking home is a little history, the contribution of Bob Avakian with some videos that they showed with Bob Avakian and his youth in the '60s when he was in the struggle against imperialism which had invaded Indochina and Vietnam and it was massacring innocent people and throwing innocent people in jail who were against that imperialist war and knowing that this guy has been not only dedicated to the revolutionary movement for more than 35 years but also seeing other participants in the revolutionary movements in this country, which is like a treasure and seeing older folks standing up and telling the youth, "It's time that you 'step up,' that you rise up, that you take the lead of the anti-imperialist revolutionary movement." Because as they said, there is nothing else in life that is worth more than being a revolutionary to take humanity to a better place.


Young white man

Revolution: How did you hear about the event, and why did you decide to attend?

I heard about the event through people involved with the production side of it. Most notably the director, who convinced me to come.

Revolution: How did she convince you?

She just started telling me about it. Really what sold me in a big way, I guess, was the acts, was who was coming, different performers and the bands. I'm in the performing arts, and I was intrigued by seeing that part of it, in a big way.

Revolution: What's your reaction to the description of the event—a celebration of revolution and the vision of a new world?

Well, I did get a copy of Bob Avakian's book, but I haven't read it yet, before the event. But I did get a copy of it, and I guess this is my precursor to reading it. I hope when I leave tonight I'm excited to go home to read it.

Revolution: What's your expectations?

Well, I'm expecting a celebration. I'm expecting a party. I feel like a lot of times with revolutionary politics, people can get bogged down in negativity, bogged down in, like admittedly incredibly huge crisis that confronts any left-leaning and forward-progressive moving group. So what I'm looking for tonight is a celebration of unity and a celebration of a commitment and a re-commitment to those goals, you know, in the face of overwhelming odds.

Revolution: Overwhelming odds…

Well, seemingly, you know, sometimes. It can be a hard slog for people.

Revolution: Had you heard about Bob Avakian before this?

No, I was not familiar with Bob Avakian's work, which is why I got the book. My understanding of like the philosophies behind communism and socialism is pretty…I mean, I've taken socialist theory in college and I've done some reading. But honestly it's been a while since I've engaged actively with left-leaning philosophy, left-leaning politics.


Immigrant compañera (interview originally in Spanish)

Revolution: We're here with an immigrant compañera who studies and works. We would like to know what you think about the event.

It was great, awesome. You can definitely sit down and see all this talent, all this culture. In particular the book by Bob Avakian. I want to say it's a very interesting way to introduce a book. I think that everyone who was here are definitely people who believe in Bob Avakian and in revolution and this is another chance to be here and go out and grow more and distribute the book to be able to get to revolution.

Revolution: Have you already read BAsics?

I am reading it. I love what I've read up to now.


College student

Revolution: Give me a one sentence description of yourself.

I'm a Latino New Yorker, student at a college.

Revolution: How did you learn about this event?

I heard about it through people from Revolution Book store, who had presented it to our class. The class focuses on African American and Latino diaspora in America. So that's how I heard about it.

Revolution: The professor was encouraging students to go?

As a matter of fact, all of the class is here, it's kind of like a trip, a field trip.

Revolution: Aside from this being a class outing, what's your interest in this, what are you expecting?

Well, I'm not sure what to expect, honestly. I'm not entirely familiar with the whole movement. But it sounds really interesting, so I want to come experience it, get some information and educate myself.

Revolution: Well, the title of the program says "celebration of revolution and the vision of a new world." Is that something that attracts you, a possibility of a whole different world from what we have now?

It certainly is. It's not impossible, I don't know how to get there, but I see that obviously there's some kind of movement. The information is there, the people are working. So I just want to get some information and try to contribute in some way, shape or form. But honestly, this is like my first event. I've never been exposed to the whole revolutionary party or anything like that, so I'm really new to everything.


Black college student

Revolution: How did you come to know about this event?

I saw a flyer at a local restaurant, around the college, when I was going out for lunch one day.

Revolution: What inspired you to come and check this event out?

Well it seemed interesting. I looked at the topic. I looked at some of the speakers, and I decided that maybe I should check it out.

Revolution: Tell me more—like you said the topic interested you…

Well it seemed more about celebration than merely about grievances. And I tend to have a pretty positive point of view. And I also wanted to come to a place where there would be other people who had a similar perspective on things. So you know, I hope to come and interact with different people and see different things I thought were cool.

Revolution: Did you know anything about Bob Avakian before this? The event is on the occasion of the publication of his new book, BAsics.

I have a vague recollection of the name, even though I'm not really familiar with much of the work.


White woman college student

Revolution: Tell me how you came to learn about the event and why you're here.

One of my friends saw the posters in on the campus, they're all over the place. We're doing an open-mike/poetry event on the 27th, so my teacher actually gave me the money to come to this event so I could see, because I've never actually done a poetry event before. But this is really cool. Like the whole revolutionary thing, I don't know much about it, but I'm willing to learn. I think it's really interesting.

Revolution: Do you know of any of the performers tonight?

Not really. I'm generally interested in a lot of things. This is just so cool, they're having a whole event, just to have people learn about it. To have a lot more people know. Because I'm sure a lot of people on the campus don't know anything about the book. But now we've seen the posters all over the place, and some of us are coming here to check it out, see what's going on.


White woman college student who was volunteering at the Revolution Books table at the event

Revolution: So how did you come to learn about the event, and not just come to it, but to volunteer here?

OK, I'm a student of International Studies at X College. One of my professors kind of connected us with A, B, and C, and they visited our class two or three times and spoke to us about this event and other events. They showed us copies of Revolution newspaper, and they sold us our books for the class. So it's just been a little bit promoted through the last couple of weeks, both in my class in particular and throughout the college. I went to buy my ticket for the event from A, and A said, "would you like to volunteer?" And I said, "that sounds great." So I volunteered.

Revolution: There was something about the event that really attracted you…

Absolutely. So in International Studies we talk about, why does the world work the way it does, and what are the reasons for it. What can we do to change or make it better. And I think that this event was something that drew me just because it… the word "revolution" is just such a great word. Such a huge word. I think that what they're trying to do here is a really important thing. Just to encourage young people like myself to get involved, to give us a voice, let us know that we can have a chance to make social change—is really important to me. This idea of imagining a world without America is really important to me. Not important, but rather interesting, because as an International Studies major I'm always trying to think of things with a different perspective than the American perspective. And so I think that learning how to change our system in America will help the world move to a better place.

Revolution: Have you read any of the works by Bob Avakian, like his new book?

I'm actually planning on reading the book after this event, but I haven't yet.

Revolution: What do you think so far, of being here at the Revolution Books table, and interacting with the whole crowd here?

It's been really fun, and I think that's really the most important thing, to make these important issues something that we want to think about and something we want to do, and make it fun and interesting through art and poetry and music. There's no better way to express ourselves. And if we're moving towards such a big change, then we should do it in the most fun way possible. And that the thing I've learning most from the people from Revolution Books, is just to make it fun, and care.


A theology student

Revolution: What drew you into coming to the event?

I think the words in the title of the event, Revolutionary Communist Party. Basically that's what got me interested.

Revolution: How did it interest you? You're wanting to change the world, and this is something you wanted to check out?

Something like that.

Revolution: What do you think of the program so far?

Uh, I felt…it reminded me of sort of old school movements that were very figurehead-based. I felt a little Scientology at times, I don't know if that makes sense, the way to describe that. But the sort of the culture of the hero, the leader—that was a little off-putting. But other than that, it was very great. The music was beautiful, the poetry was amazing. And I've never been to a place that seemed more friendly. As soon as I came in here, there were 20 people greeting me, so it was really nice.


Iranian-American in his 20s

Revolution: How did you learn about the event, and why did you decide to attend?

Well, I heard it from a friend, she's attending NYU, she told me about it. So I came along because where I'm from, we're going through a revolution, so…

Revolution: Where is that?

Iran. So it's like the whole Green movement and all that.

Revolution: Are you a university student also?

No, no, I'm a musician. Just attending to see what it's about, that's all. Because I came from…that time, it was the heat of the revolution. I had a lot of friends that attended marches and all the breakouts, and getting arrested, going through all that. It's just like a flashback again.

Revolution: Had you heard about Bob Avakian before? There was the part of the program where there was a reading of the poem by an Iranian revolutionary about Avakian.

Yeah, yeah, I heard that part. And it was really good for me, as half Iranian, half American, to hear that Iran is being considered, you know, as part of this. It was really interesting.

Revolution: Are there other things that struck you during the program so far?

Not really, I couldn't really bond with it because I had no information on it. But it was interesting. The poetry was interesting, yeah. Especially the guy, I can't remember his name, the guy, he came from India, had an Indian family and lived in Harlem?

Revolution: You mean Aladdin—from Bangladesh.

Yeah, Bangladesh. That was really interesting.


Black college student

Revolution: Where did you learn about the event?

A gentleman and a young lady and another gentleman came to a class I was having… They did a presentation, they had handed flyers out. They recommended that it would be something for us to check out.

Revolution: What was it that drew you to the event?

Well, they played also a CD with a recording by the author…

Revolution: Bob Avakian…

Yes, Bob Avakian, Mr. Avakian. And they actually gave me a sample of the CD. And I listened to that. And actually, a lot of things that he's saying on there are things, subjects, that I've heard about and have some interest in. And somebody says "revolution," you know, it kind of piques your interest. You wanna know what they're really talking about, what they're going on with.

Revolution: So from what you've learned so far from tonight and from things you've been reading and hearing about this revolution and this leader, what are you thinking?

I think I'm still in the learning process, and just trying to learn some more, take in as much information as possible. And from there, I mean, I'll see where I would go. But as I said, I want to just see, take in some more, learn some more, and see what takes with me, what avenue I want to go down on. If there's a role for me to play, whatever role that I wanna play or however I would pursue it, anything I would want to do.

Revolution: What do you think about the first half of the program?

It was pretty good. Actually, I caught half of the first half. I'm coming in from work. But it's very inspiring and very interesting. I'm enjoying it.

Revolution: Particular artist or poet or performance that struck you?

I was interested in the letters from the prisoners. That was really interesting, because that's a serious thing, serious subject and topic that we should address. And the young man too, Alejandro del Fuego. It's very interesting to see young people, teenage, early 20s, taking interest in that, because in my opinion, I think that a lot of people, they're too focused on materialism, and status and this, so it's good to see somebody who's thinking in a conscious aware state that's that young.


Black man, veteran of the '60s who rode a bus from Houston with BA shirt to come to the Harlem event

Revolution: Let me start out asking you why you came to this event, what made you think you really had to be here?

Well, I think the world is on the brink of ultimate destruction and this might be the light that save humanity, a different way, a different solution… people with different ideologies, based on human life instead of money and wealth and all this, preserving mankind. I mean this whole convention I think is one step on preserving life on the planet with, you know, people saving the planet.

Revolution: What do you think of the name of it, "A Celebration of Revolution and the Vision of a New World"?

I think the vision of a new world to me is redistributing…or a redistribution of the wealth of the world. A new world where the wealth and prosperity won't be in the hands of just a few people, a very minute minority. Whereas everybody in the world can have a share in the planet instead of just ownership by corporations, big businesses and stuff like that.  A redistribution of the wealth of the world. That's it.

Revolution: What have you learned about Bob Avakian before this event? This event is celebrating on one level, the publication of BAsics. Have you read much of it?

Most of it, his writing, his speeches. He is a very charismatic leader, he know all the words, and he is saying them with people beginning to wake up, and I am just thankful to be a part of this movement… It's not about individuals, or wealth, or accumulating billions and billions of dollars for 30 or 40 years. It's not that type of movement. It's for working people, union, organizing, young people, working people, life for everybody, animals, plant, all kind of life. I think in these days and time, brought about this movement. I am here to help it out.  I am really looking forward to it.

Revolution: Somebody told me that when you came to New York, you went to a church where the event wasn't at, and they directed you here. You really wanted to get here.

I traveled by Greyhound bus all the way, and I went to the church, and some people around there told me they would walk me over to the location, and help me find out where it was and told me to be careful and all that, don't talk to strangers and all that kind of stuff. I could come stay with them. It was very good.

Revolution: They knew about it in other words?

They knew about the whole movement, the whole thing.


Young white man

Revolution: So here we are at intermission, you said you were enjoying yourself…

I am enjoying myself. The member of the Last Poets who did his recitation, I've been an admirer of the Last Poets for a long time. I find a lot of their stuff inspiring, it's a total godsend just to happen in to a place where he drops in. I recently attended an anarchist demonstration down around Washington Square Park. And while I admired their fixation to their cause, they struck me as ineffectual, because the art with which they presented their cause was not particularly good, rather sub-par. These guys are consummate artists, the ones that performed so far. The dancers and musicians all have a great deal of technical skill. And due to that, their message comes through much more clearly, which is admirable.

Revolution: What do you think about revolution, and about communism, and this communist leader, Bob Avakian?

At the anarchist fair I was at yesterday, I was actually hearing a lot of people bash him and his followers. I myself don't know a great deal about the anarchist scene. I'm a self-professed hedonist for the most part and have not strayed into politics much in my life. So I would withhold any judgment until I learned more about everyone's side of the argument. I'm not inclined to listen to bashers. I'm not inclined to listen to anything until I know a great deal about it.

Revolution: Part of the title of this event is about the "vision of a new world." Do you get a sense of that, with all these different people coming together…

Absolutely. I would describe myself as a liberal. As to my thoughts on revolution as a concept, I am a practical man. I would have to think about the prospects of workability, and furthermore, what the new world would look like in of itself, which is one of the things I'm hoping these guys will explain to me at greater length, what exactly…what their utopia would be.

Revolution: It's a glimpse of a future—it's not the new world itself, we have to make revolution to get to that, but there are people here coming together, enjoying the night together…

I mean I'm all for coming together and enjoying the night together regardless of social class. With this performance itself providing a glimpse, I would be inclined to like it.

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What Humanity Needs
From Ike to Mao and Beyond