In 2010, the Newseum in Washington D.C. finally obtained the suit O. J. Simpson wore in court the day he was acquitted, and it now stands as both an artifact in their "Trial of the Century" exhibit and a symbol of the American media's endless hunger for the criminal and the celebrity. This event serves as a launching point for Ishmael Reed's Juice!, a novelistic commentary on the post-Simpson American media frenzy from one of the most controversial figures in American literature today. Through Paul Blessings—a censored cartoonist suffering from diabetes—and his cohorts—serving as stand-ins for the various mediums of art—Ishmael Reed argues that since 1994, "O. J. has become a metaphor for things wrong with culture and politics." A lament for the death of print media, the growth of the corporation, and the process of growing old, Juice! serves as a comi-tragedy, chronicling the increased anxieties of "post-race" America.
Author Ishmael Reed
Title First Published 01 April 2011
Nb of pages 296 p.
GTIN13 (EAN13) 9781564786371
Publication Date 05 April 2011
Nb of pages 296
Dimensions 5.5 x 8 in.
List Price $14.95
Otter, Rabbit, Snakes, Bat, and me, Bear were getting older. Late sixties, early seventies, but because we were in the arts we were still producing though challenged by a younger generation and their manifestos in which we were dismissed as part of an old school or, as one writer with a penchant for redundancy put it, "fading anachronisms."
Someday if he is lucky, he will reach our stage in life. We'll see if he manages to survive the gauntlet formed by diabetes, or Parkinson’s Disease, or the Big C. See if he can live from six months to six months awaiting the results of his PSA tests. How will he experience the sadness that comes when visiting hospitalized friends like I felt when visiting Bat at that nursing home? He’d gone to the bathroom in his gallery thousands of times, but this time he opened the wrong door, and instead of the entrance to the toilet, he opened the door to his apartment, took a few steps and fell. You know those old Blues songs about one’s “good-time friends?” His good-time friends abandoned him. Later, after he’d recovered, he was being escorted to his gallery after returning from his job as a part-time heckler at the Nuyorican Poet’s Café’s slam poetry competition. The escort abandoned him at the bottom of the steps. He made it up halfway to the gallery only to fall again, this time injuring his shoulder. Let the young bloods try to encourage other friends awaiting transplant organs or being told that a balloon can substitute for a bladder or that their triple bypass resulted in an infection.