Prison

Commemorating Tiyo Attallah Salah-El, Prison Activist

Tiyo Attallah Salah-El and Howard Zinn (undated) | HowardZinn.org
Source: Tiyo Attallah Salah-El Papers, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Tiyo Attallah Salah-El (Sept. 13, 1932 – June 8, 2018) was a musician, scholar, and prison abolitionist who founded the Coalition for the Abolition of Prisons in 1995. Salah-El was 85 years and had been incarcerated for more than 40 years. He became pen pals with Howard Zinn who Zinn mentioned in his autobiography You Can't Be Neutral on a Moving Train.

“To Be Neutral, To Be Passive In A Situation Is To Collaborate With Whatever Is Going On”

Interviewed by Amy Goodman • Democracy Now! • April 27, 2005
Howard Zinn: I believe neutrality is impossible, because the world is already moving in certain directions. Wars are going on. Children are starving. And to be neutral, to pretend to neutrality, to not take a stand in a situation like that is to collaborate with whatever is going on, to allow it to happen. I did not want to be a collaborator with what was happening. I wanted my history to intercede and to take a stand on behalf of peace, on behalf of a racial equality or sexual equality..."

Critical Thinking

Interview by David Barsamian • International Socialist Review • July 21, 2004
This interview was conducted at at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts and included in the book, Original Zinn: Conversations on History and Politics.

Rise Like Lions: The Role Of Artists In a Time Of War

Interviewed by David Barsamian • The Sun • July 2004
Barsamian: You have called attention to the role of artists in a time of war. What attracts you to artists?
Zinn: Artists play a special role in social change. I first noticed this when I was a teenager and becoming politically aware for the first time. It was people in the arts who had the greatest emotional effect on me.