doctrinaire marxism

Revolution begins with the self, in the self. The individual, the basic revolutionary unit, must be purged of poision and lies that assault the ego and threaten the heart, that hazard the next larger unit–the couple or pair, that jeopardize the still larger unit–the family or cell, that put the entire movement in peril. We make many false starts because we have been programmed to depend on white models or white interpretations of non-white models, so we don’t even ask the correct questions, much less begin to move in a correct direction. Perhaps we need to face the terrifying and overwhelming possibility that there are no models, that we shall have to create from scratch. Doctrinaire Marxism is basically incompatible with Black nationalism; New Left politics is incompatible with Black nationalism; doctrinaire socialism is incompatible with Black revolution; capitalism, lord knows, is out.

–Toni Cade Bambara, “On the Issue of Roles”, in The Black Woman: An Anthology (ed. Bambara)