Grace Lee Boggs is a prominent feature in this discussion, and importantly so. Both her book and film are apt adaptations showing the possibility of human beings to adapt to the social situations and involve in constructive activism in the development of the country’s social-economic agenda and in striving towards living in harmony with each other. The movie ‘The American Revolutionary” addresses the different phases of her life as a revolutionary dealing with the various scourges that have faced humanity during her lifetime, ranging from the cold war to the Bush administrations inadvertent attacks on Iraq and Afghanistan. The enduring message derived from the film is one of a mental activist able to adapt to different situations while treating all injustices as equal problems facing humanity rather than concentrating on a particular line of activism, say social, at the expense of environmental for instance.
‘This bridge we call home’, is a critical look at the influence the feminist movement has had on the politics influencing everyone else. The Bridge is colloquially used to refer to the differences existing between people and the ways those differences would be exploited in making the world a better and equal place to inhabit for everyone. Transformation of silence into action chronicles a soliloquy by the author on the circumstances leading to her present nature, that of being outspoken. Her imminence with fatality by a potentially malignant tumor instigated in her the need to speak out and incite others to do so about the issues bogging on them.
The issues the authors address arise from the inherent condition of the world possessing differences in the way people treat each other, in contrast to the way they should treat each other. The existence conflicts in human interaction arise out of failure by people to tolerate each other’s differences. As Grace Lee Boggs states in her book, ‘The survival of mankind depends on the individual’s willingness to transform themselves into active planetary and global citizens. Further, she quotes Martin Luther in espousing on the statement as ‘to develop n overriding loyalty to mankind as a whole in order to preserve the best in their individual societies’. The issues addressed by the authors, therefore, rise out of the need to embrace the needs of all humankind in the common human mind, overriding the physical, religious and social differences that alienate people from each other.
Grace Lee Boggs notes that the conduct of politics needs to change from politics as usual. In this regard, she is calling for people to cease making excuses for what is wrong in the society by concentrating by the top leadership; instead, she calls on the revaluation of the way of handling things by making a shift from the pursuit of private happiness for the collective advancement of humanity. Audra Lorde observes that people, and in particular her immediate audience at the time, women, are gripped by fear to speak out. The fear to speak, and express discontent at the current situation slows down the rate of change that would have otherwise occurred. As Audra Lorde noted, the silences she had been harboring had not protected her, rather, she had felt regret at having held herself back when the prospect of death occurred to her.
The enduring theme of the film and the writings is a clarion call to people to change their perceptions and appreciate the interrelatedness of everything and life especially. In seeking their joy, to consider the harm that might be done to others in the process, in seeking justice, to overlook the immediate personal interests for the greater good, in leading life, to adapt constantly to the times and demands of the current situation. ‘Now let us make a shift’, captures this theme/ motif in, its conclusion in the prayer, ‘ then with feather, bone, incense and water you attend the spirits’ presence; spirit embodying yourself as a rock, tree, bird, human, past, present, and future’ This prayer insinuates the view humans should approach life with, as extensions of nature and of each other, as such; they are able to care for each other’s interests.
The films/ articles provoke a feeling of individual responsibility over the collective destiny of the human condition. In this respect, interaction with material leads one to desire a life greater than one of personal happiness achievement, in achieving collective good, one enjoys increased satisfaction in comparison to personal happiness achieving.