Indignant Heart: A Black Worker’s Journal
By Charles Denby
Autobiography of the Black worker-editor of News & Letters.
Expanded 1989 edition includes “In Memoriam” to Charles Denby by Raya Dunayevskaya and Introduction by William H. Harris.
Wayne State University Press, 1989. 303 pp.
$14.95 + $4 postage
“Denby’s is an engrossing account of wildcat strikes, union discord, racial disputes within shops, and the gravest problem facing modern workers: the impersonal assembly line with its foremen, useless union stewards, and the oppressive speed-up…It is a book that is timeless in its analysis of marginality, oppression, character, and work…one which will enlighten your understanding of working-class people and of the history of Afro-Americans.”—William H. Harris, from the Introduction
“As literature, as a historical document, and as a political document, Indignant Heart is a classic…A few themes shine out from the book…Perhaps most fundamental is his belief in the power of self-initiated and self-directed action…Second, he opposes the idea that there is ‘no Black question outside the class question.’ This argument is used to keep Black struggles under the control of the trade union officialdom. A third theme is the development of workers’ activities independent of the union officialdom.”—Jeremy Brecher, In These Times
“The 75 years of Charles Denby’s life are so full of class struggles, Black revolts, freedom movements that they illuminate not only the present but cast a light even on the future…[T]he genius of Charles Denby lies in the fact that the story of his life—Indignant Heart: A Black Worker’s Journal—is the story of workers’ struggles for freedom, his and all others the world over.”—Raya Dunayevskaya, from the Afterword