（マックス・ブロート編集／城山良彦訳『決定版カフカ全集 10 フェリーツェへの手紙（Ⅰ）』（新潮社、一九九二年）、318～319; 一九一三年三月三〇日）
- きのうはかなり心身がよかった印象なのだが、きょうは転じて快適ではなく、二食目を取る前後あたりからまた喉の詰まるような感覚がわずかながら発見されて、胃のほうもごくうっすらと反応している。しょっぱい鹿肉なんか食ったためか？ いずれにしてもそうなるとなかなか書きものをしようという気にもならない。二食目を食い終えたのは五時前くらいだったとおもうが、そこからどうすっかなあというのが、あまりなにもやる気にならず、ひとまずWoolfの英文を読み（本日二度目）、そこからさらに「読みかえし」ノートにも行こうとしたところが読みはじめると気が乗らず、ちょっと休んでからだをみてみるかとおもって目を閉じ静止してみると、五分くらい体内の感覚をさぐるだけのつもりがそのままふつうに瞑想になって三〇分ほど止まっていた。喉の詰まりはたしかにあって、微妙ながら
- あと、したに引用してあるMichael Harriot, “War on wokeness: the year the right rallied around a made-up menace”（2022/12/21, Wed.）（https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/dec/20/anti-woke-race-america-history(https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/dec/20/anti-woke-race-america-history)）という記事はおもしろかった。
- 「ことば」: 40, 31, 9, 21 - 25
- 日記読み: 2021/12/22, Wed.
Michael Harriot, “War on wokeness: the year the right rallied around a made-up menace”（2022/12/21, Wed.）（https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/dec/20/anti-woke-race-america-history(https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/dec/20/anti-woke-race-america-history)）
Staying woke is predicated on a maxim so common in Black America that the New York Times once simply called it a part of the “Negro idiom”. The first documented use of the phrase “stay woke” occurred in 1938, when Huddie “Leadbelly” Ledbetter ended a song about nine Black men by advising Black people traveling through Alabama to “stay woke … Keep your eyes open.” In 1940, a member of the Negro United Mine Workers promised that the striking members would “stay woke up longer” than their opposition.
When Martin Luther King stood before Morehouse College’s graduating class to deliver the first draft of an address that would serve as his go-to speech for the rest of his life, he knew he was becoming a pariah. By 2 June 1959, the US government had already started a program aimed at “maintaining the existing social order” by “neutralizing individuals perceived as threats”. Long before King warned the students against complacency and racial backlash, the FBI had created what a Senate intelligence report referred to as “labels without meaning” that would eventually convince white Americans that King was an anti-American Marxist hellbent on destroying their beloved country.
On that day, King debuted his Remaining Awake speech, explaining: “There would be nothing more tragic during this period of social change than to allow our mental and moral attitudes to sleep while this tremendous social change takes place.”
But less than a decade later, many white Americans were ignoring the central theme of King’s most consistent message: stay woke. By 1964, a majority of white New Yorkers felt that the civil rights movement had “gone too far”. In 1965, a Gallup poll found that 85% of Americans believed that communists were involved in the civil rights movement. By 1966, only 36% of white Americans believed that King “helped the negro cause”.
My, how the times haven’t changed.
Contrary to the claims of those who profess to know “what MLK would have wanted”, King spoke more about being woke than he did about dreams or mountaintops. His Remaining Awake speech contradicted the conservative assertion that institutional racism is a myth and dispelled any notion that the US is not a racist country. In his 1964 address to Oberlin College, King called racism a “national problem”, explaining that “everyone must share in the guilt as individuals and as institutions”. Anti-woke activists would have hated his 1966 lecture at Southern Methodist University, when the speech included a version of history that began in 1619 as the “first Negro slaves landed on the shores of this nation … against their will”. That sounds a lot like critical race theory. Maybe he was trying to teach people how to be an anti-racist.
On 31 March 1968, King decided to sprinkle a few Bible verses into his trusty speech for a sermon at the National Cathedral in Washington DC. In the church called the “spiritual home for the nation”, King gave the most complete version of Remaining Awake Through a Revolution. It was longer than the I Have a Dream and I Have Been to the Mountaintop speeches combined. King explained that battling injustice would cause some Americans to lash out against those fighting to live in a free country. Still, he admonished the worshippers to stay woke, while he offered what still stands as the clearest explanation for the entire phenomenon.
“I say to you that our goal is freedom, and I believe we are going to get there because however much she strays away from it, the goal of America is freedom,” King preached, before revealing the reason why he believed the beta version of the anti-woke movement was doomed.
“If the inexpressible cruelties of slavery couldn’t stop us, the opposition that we now face will surely fail … however dark it is, however deep the angry feelings are, and however violent explosions are, I can still sing We Shall Overcome.”
Four days after he assured the nation that “we shall overcome because the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice”, an anti-woke warrior fired a bullet into Martin Luther King’s face.
So was King wrong?
Maybe the moral arc of the universe is just part of a circle that bends towards whiteness. Perhaps the lesson of 2022 is those who refuse to teach America’s true history have doomed us to repeat it. Or maybe it is a lesson in physics – for every positive action there is an equal and opposite backlash. Emancipation, then mass incarceration. Reconstruction, then segregation. The civil rights movement begat the states’ rights movement. The 1619 Project spawned the 1776 Project. LGBTQ+ pride produced “don’t say gay”. The response to critical race theory was the “great replacement theory”. Black Lives Matter spawned White Lives Matter. And when the murder of George Floyd opened the eyes of people who say they “don’t see color”, the racial reckoning resulted in an equal and opposite white backlash that morphed into the anti-woke movement.
On 5 April 1968, the president of the United States joined an estimated 4,000 mourners to remember King at the church where he delivered his last sermon. As a bell tolled and worshippers exited, a group of white children standing outside began singing We Shall Overcome.
This, my friend, is the oxymoron of America. And that is the lesson for 2022. The only reliable thing in America is the recurring racial backlash; everything else is sermon and song. Progress is fragile. Momentum is fleeting. This country is not a pendulum; it is a metronome. And King was right: we shall overcome. He was also correct when he told the audience at the National Cathedral that “truth, crushed to the ground, will rise again”.
2022 was about the crushing.
Julian Borger in Washington, “Cuban missile crisis, 60 years on: new papers reveal how close the world came to nuclear disaster”（2022/10/27, Thu.）（https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/oct/27/cuban-missile-crisis-60-years-on-new-papers-reveal-how-close-the-world-came-to-nuclear-disaster(https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/oct/27/cuban-missile-crisis-60-years-on-new-papers-reveal-how-close-the-world-came-to-nuclear-disaster)）
Many nuclear historians agree that 27 October 1962, known as “Black Saturday”, was the closest the world came to nuclear catastrophe, as US forces enforced a blockade of Cuba to stop deliveries of Soviet missiles. On the same day a U-2 spy plane was shot down over the island, and another went missing over Siberia when the pilot lost his way.