On April 6, 2002, at the close of a lecture at Penn State, Amiri Baraka read his poem "Jungle Jim Flunks His Screen Test." The poem was captivating and far out in all kinds of ways. I was a graduate student at the time, and had no idea that the poem would someday become part of my book Bad Men.
I was fortunate to have recorded Baraka giving that reading. Over the years -- for two decades! -- I played the poem for students. Only a bad man poet could produce and perform such an audacious composition, offering these artful insults of so many different people.
In my book, I provided an extended treatment of "Jungle Jim Flunks His Screen Test," focusing on Baraka's onslaught of poetic jokes and insults.
This entry is part of a series--28 Days & Ways of Thinking about Bad Men & Vulnerable Black Boys.
Note: For a 30% discount, use the promo code 10FEB23 when and if purchasing the book on the University of Virginia Press site. (For February 2023 only).