Cornel West in 2008
|Born||Cornel Ronald West
June 2, 1953
Tulsa, Oklahoma, United States
|Alma mater||Harvard University (A.B.)
Princeton University (Ph.D.)
|School||Neopragmatism, Existentialism, Africana Philosophy, Historicism|
|Institutions||Union Theological Seminary
Yale Divinity School
|Political Philosophy, Philosophy of religion, Ethics, Race, Democracy, Liberation theology|
|Race Matters, Democracy Matters|
Cornel Ronald West (born June 2, 1953) is an American philosopher, academic, activist, author, public intellectual, and prominent member of the Democratic Socialists of America. The son of a Baptist minister, West received his undergraduate education at Harvard University, graduating with a bachelor's degree in 1973, and received a Ph.D at Princeton University in 1980, becoming the first African American to graduate from Princeton with a Ph.D in philosophy. He taught at Harvard in 2001 before leaving the school after a highly publicized dispute with then-president Lawrence Summers. He was Professor of African American Studies at Princeton before leaving the school in 2011 to become Professor of Philosophy and Christian Practice at the Union Theological Seminary in New York City. He has also spent time teaching at the University of Paris.
The bulk of West's work focuses on the role of race, gender, and class in American society and the means by which people act and react to their "radical conditionedness." West draws intellectual contributions from multiple traditions, including Christianity, the black church, Marxism, neopragmatism, and transcendentalism. Among his most influential books are Race Matters (1994) and Democracy Matters (2004).
West is a frequent media commentator on political and social issues. He often appears on networks such as CNN, C-SPAN, MSNBC, Fox News and PBS and programs such as Real Time With Bill Maher, The Colbert Report, and The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson. From 2010 through 2013, he co-hosted a radio program with Tavis Smiley, called Smiley and West. He has also been featured in several documentaries, and made appearances in Hollywood films The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions, also providing commentary for the films. He has also made several spoken word and hip hop albums, and has been named MTV's Artist of the Week for his work.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Career
- 3 Dispute with Lawrence Summers
- 4 Activism
- 5 Views on the 2016 Election Campaign
- 6 Published works
- 7 Filmography
- 8 Discography
- 9 See also
- 10 References
- 11 Further reading
- 12 External links
West was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and grew up in Sacramento, California, where he graduated from John F. Kennedy High School. His mother, Irene (Bias), was a teacher and principal, and his father, Clifton Louis West, Jr., was a general contractor for the Defense Department. Irene B. West Elementary School in Elk Grove, California, is named for his mother.
As a young man, West marched in civil rights demonstrations and organized protests demanding black studies courses at his high school, where he was class president. He later wrote that, in his youth, he admired "the sincere black militancy of Malcolm X, the defiant rage of the Black Panther Party [...] and the livid black theology of James Cone."
In 1970, after graduating from high school, he enrolled at Harvard College and took classes from philosophers Robert Nozick and Stanley Cavell. In 1973, he graduated magna cum laude in Near Eastern languages and civilization. West credited Harvard with exposing him to a broader range of ideas, influenced by his professors as well as the Black Panther Party. West says his Christianity prevented him from joining the BPP, instead choosing to work in local breakfast, prison, and church programs.
In 1980, West earned a Ph.D. from Princeton, where he was influenced by Richard Rorty's neopragmatism. The title of his dissertation was Ethics, historicism and the Marxist tradition, which was later revised and published under the title The Ethical Dimensions of Marxist Thought.
In his mid-20s, he returned to Harvard as a W. E. B. Du Bois Fellow before becoming an Assistant Professor at Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York. In 1984, he went to Yale Divinity School in what eventually became a joint appointment in American Studies. While at Yale, he participated in campus protests for a clerical labor union and divestment from apartheid South Africa. One of the protests resulted in his being arrested and jailed. As punishment, the University administration canceled his leave for the spring term in 1987, leading him to commute from Yale in New Haven, Connecticut, where he was teaching two classes, across the Atlantic Ocean to the University of Paris.
He then returned to Union for one year before going to Princeton to become a professor of Religion and director of the Program in African-American Studies from 1988 to 1994. After Princeton, he accepted an appointment as professor of African-American studies at Harvard University, with a joint appointment at the Harvard Divinity School. West taught one of the University's most popular courses, an introductory class on African-American studies. In 1998, he was appointed the first Alphonse Fletcher University Professor. West utilized this new position to teach in not only African-American studies, but also in divinity, religion, and philosophy. West left Harvard after a widely publicized dispute with then-President Lawrence Summers in 2002. That year, West returned to Princeton, where he helped create “one of the world’s leading centers for African-American studies” according to Shirley Tilghman, Princeton's president in 2011. In 2012, West left Princeton and returned to the seminary where he began his teaching career, Union Theological Seminary. His departure from Princeton, unlike his departure from Harvard, was on good terms and he remains an emeritus professor at Princeton.
The recipient of more than 20 honorary degrees and an American Book Award, he has written or contributed to over twenty published books. West is a long-time member of the Democratic Socialists of America, for which he now serves as an honorary chair. He is also a co-founder of the Network of Spiritual Progressives. West is on the advisory board of the International Bridges to Justice.
West is also a member of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity and its World Policy Council, a think tank whose purpose is to expand Alpha Phi Alpha's involvement in politics and social and current policy to encompass international concerns.
In 1995, The New Republic literary editor Leon Wieseltier charged him with opportunism, crass showmanship, and lack of scholarly seriousness. Wieseltier specifically dismissed West's books as "almost completely worthless" because, he said, they are "noisy, tedious, slippery ... sectarian, humorless, pedantic and self-endeared." Nonetheless, West remains a widely cited scholar in the popular press.
West appears as Councillor West in both The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions and also provides the voice for this character in the video game Enter the Matrix. In addition, West provides philosophical commentary on all three Matrix films in The Ultimate Matrix Collection, along with integral theorist Ken Wilber.
He has made several appearances in documentary films also, such as the 2008 film Examined Life, a documentary featuring several academics discussing philosophy in real-world contexts. West, "driving through Manhattan, . . . compares philosophy to jazz and blues, reminding us how intense and invigorating a life of the mind can be." He also appears in conversation with Bill Withers in the Bill Withers documentary, Still Bill.
In 2010, he completed recording with the Cornel West Theory, a hip hop band endorsed by West. He has also released several hip-hop/soul/spoken word albums. In 2001, West released his first album, Sketches of My Culture. Street Knowledge followed in 2004. In 2007, West released Never Forget: A Journey of Revelations, his third album which included collaborations with the likes of Prince, Talib Kweli, Jill Scott, Andre 3000, KRS-One, and the late Gerald Levert. West appeared on Immortal Technique's song "Sign of the Times", which appeared on the 2011 album The Martyr. In 2012, he was featured on Brother Ali's song "Letter to My Countrymen", which appeared on the album Mourning in America and Dreaming in Color.
Dispute with Lawrence Summers
In 2000, economist and former U.S. Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers became president of Harvard. Soon after, Summers held a private meeting with West, where he reportedly rebuked West for missing too many classes, contributing to grade inflation, neglecting serious scholarship, and spending too much time on his economically profitable projects. Summers reportedly suggested that West produce an academic book befitting his professorial position, as his recent output had consisted primarily of co-written and edited volumes. According to some reports, Summers also objected to West's production of a CD, the critically panned Sketches of My Culture, and to his political campaigning, including an alleged three weeks to promote Bill Bradley's presidential campaign. West contended he had missed only one class during his tenure at Harvard "in order to give a keynote address at a Harvard-sponsored conference on AIDS." Summers also allegedly suggested that since West held the rank of Harvard University Professor and thus reported directly to the President, he should meet with Summers regularly to discuss the progress of his academic production.
Summers refused to comment on the details of his conversation with West, except to express hope that West would remain at Harvard. Soon after, West was hospitalized for prostate cancer. West complained that Summers failed to send him get-well wishes until weeks after his surgery, whereas newly installed Princeton president Shirley Tilghman had contacted him frequently before and after his treatment.
In 2002 West left Harvard University to return to Princeton. West lashed out at Summers in public interviews, calling him "the Ariel Sharon of higher education" on NPR's Tavis Smiley Show. In response to these remarks, five Princeton faculty members, led by professor of molecular biology Jacques Robert Fresco, said they looked with "strong disfavor upon his characterization" of Summers and that "such an analogy carries innuendoes and implications... that many on the Princeton faculty find highly inappropriate, indeed repugnant and intolerable."
Harvard University's undergraduate student newspaper, The Harvard Crimson, suggested in October 2002 that the premise of Law and Order: Criminal Intent episode "Anti-Thesis" was based on West's conflicts with Summers.
Views on race in the United States
West has called the U.S. a "racist patriarchal" nation where white supremacy continues to define everyday life. "White America," he writes, "has been historically weak-willed in ensuring racial justice and has continued to resist fully accepting the humanity of blacks." This has resulted, he says, in the creation of many "degraded and oppressed people hungry for identity, meaning, and self-worth." West attributes most of the black community's problems to "existential angst derive[d] from the lived experience of ontological wounds and emotional scars inflicted by white supremacist beliefs and images permeating U.S. society and culture."
In West's view, the September 11 attacks gave white Americans a glimpse of what it means to be a black person in the United States—feeling "unsafe, unprotected, subject to random violence, and hatred" for who they are. "The ugly terrorist attacks on innocent civilians on 9/11," he said, "plunged the whole country into the blues."
West was arrested on October 13, 2014, while protesting against the shooting of Michael Brown and participating in Ferguson October, and again on August 10, 2015, while demonstrating outside a courthouse in St. Louis on the one-year anniversary of Brown's death.
West has described himself as a "non-Marxist socialist" (partly because he cannot reconcile Marxism with Christianity) and serves as honorary chair of the Democratic Socialists of America, which he has described as "the first multiracial, socialist organization close enough to my politics that I could join". He also described himself as a "radical democrat, suspicious of all forms of authority" on the Matrix-themed documentary The Burly Man Chronicles.
West believes that "the overthrow of Saddam Hussein's ugly totalitarian regime was desirable," but that the war in Iraq was the result of "dishonest manipulation" on the part of the Bush administration. He asserts that Bush Administration hawks "are not simply conservative elites and right-wing ideologues", but rather are "evangelical nihilists – drunk with power and driven by grand delusions of American domination of the world". He adds, "We are [now] experiencing the sad gangsterization of America, an unbridled grasp at power, wealth, and status." Viewing capitalism as the root cause of these alleged American lusts, West warns, "Free-market fundamentalism trivializes the concern for public interest. It puts fear and insecurity in the hearts of anxiety-ridden workers. It also makes money-driven, poll-obsessed elected officials deferential to corporate goals of profit – often at the cost of the common good."
West has been involved with such projects as the Million Man March and Russell Simmons's Hip-Hop Summit, and worked with such public figures as Louis Farrakhan and Al Sharpton, whose 2004 presidential campaign West advised.
In 2000, West worked as a senior advisor to Democratic presidential candidate Bill Bradley. When Bradley lost in the primaries, West became a prominent endorser of Ralph Nader, even speaking at some Nader rallies. Some Greens sought to draft West to run as a presidential candidate in 2004. West declined, citing his active participation in the Al Sharpton campaign. West, along with other prominent Nader 2000 supporters, signed the "Vote to Stop Bush" statement urging progressive voters in swing states to vote for John Kerry, despite strong disagreements with many of Kerry's policies.
In April 2002 West and Rabbi Michael Lerner performed civil disobedience by sitting in the street in front of the U.S. State Department "in solidarity with suffering Palestinian and Israeli brothers and sisters." West said, "We must keep in touch with the humanity of both sides." In May 2007 West joined a demonstration against "injustices faced by the Palestinian people resulting from the Israeli occupation" and "to bring attention to this 40-year travesty of justice". In 2011, West called on the University of Arizona to divest from companies profiting from the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian Territories.
West also serves as co-chair of the Tikkun Community. He co-chaired the National Parenting Organization's Task Force on Parent Empowerment and participated in President Clinton's National Conversation on Race. He has publicly endorsed In These Times magazine by calling it: "The most creative and challenging news magazine of the American left". He is also a contributing editor for Sojourners Magazine.
West supports People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) in its Kentucky Fried Cruelty campaign, aimed at eliminating what PETA describes as KFC's inhumane treatment of chickens. West is quoted on PETA flyers: "Although most people don't know chickens as well as they know cats and dogs, chickens are interesting individuals with personalities and interests every bit as developed as the dogs and cats with whom many of us share our lives."
In 2008, West contributed his insights on the current global issue of modernized slavery and human trafficking in the documentary Call+Response. West is a member of the Campaign for Peace and Democracy.
In 2011, West addressed his frustration about some critics of the Occupy Wall Street, who remark about the movement's lack of a clear and unified message. West replied by saying:
It's impossible to translate the issue of the greed of Wall Street into one demand, or two demands. We're talking about a democratic awakening...you're talking about raising political consciousness so it spills over all parts of the country, so people can begin to see what's going on through a set of different lens, and then you begin to highlight what the more detailed demands would be. Because in the end we're really talking about what Martin King would call a revolution: A transfer of power from oligarchs to everyday people of all colors. And that is a step by step process.
On October 16, 2011, West was in Washington, D.C., participating in the Occupy D.C. protests on the steps of the Supreme Court over the court's decision in the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission case the previous year. Five days later, he was arrested during an Occupy Wall Street protest in Harlem against the New York Police Department's stop and frisk policy.
Views on Barack Obama
West criticized President Obama when Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009, saying that it would be difficult for Obama to be "a war president with a peace prize". West further retracted his support for Obama in an April 2011 interview, stating that Obama is "a black mascot of Wall Street oligarchs and a black puppet of corporate plutocrats. And now he has become head of the American killing machine and is proud of it." In November 2012, West said in an interview that he considered Obama a "Rockefeller Republican in blackface."
Melissa Harris-Perry, a professor of political science at Tulane University, criticized what she described as the "utter hilarity" of West's statements, writing that his comments are a "classic projection of his own comfortably ensconced life at Harvard and Princeton Universities" and that West "offers thin criticism of president Obama and stunning insight into the delicate ego of the self-appointed black leadership class". West later called Harris-Perry a "fake and a fraud".
In 2011, West participated in a "Poverty Tour" with Tavis Smiley, his co-host on the Public Radio International program Smiley & West. The tour became a two-part special on their radio program as well as a five-night special on the PBS television program Tavis Smiley. They recounted their experience on the tour in their 2012 bestselling book The Rich and the Rest of Us. The stated aim of the tour was to highlight the plight of the impoverished population of the United States prior to the 2012 Presidential Election, whose candidates West and Smiley stated had ignored the plight of the poor.
In 2014, West gave an interview slamming Obama, calling him a "counterfeit" who posed as a progressive. West defined Obama's presidency as "a Wall Street presidency, a drone presidency, a national security presidency."
Views on the 2016 Election Campaign
West openly expressed his support for Democratic contender Bernie Sanders during an interview on CNN Tonight. West argued that Sanders' plans to divert wealth from Wall Street elites to the poorest members of society would be beneficial for the African American community. On August 24, West posted to his Twitter account "I endorse Brother @BernieSanders because he is a long-distance runner with integrity in the struggle for justice for over 50 years."
- "Black Theology and Marxist Thought" (1979) – essay
- Prophesy Deliverance! An Afro-American Revolutionary Christianity (1982)
- Post-Analytic Philosophy, edited with John Rajchman (1985)
- Prophetic Fragments (1988)
- The American Evasion of Philosophy: A Genealogy of Pragmatism (1989)
- Breaking Bread: Insurgent Black Intellectual Life (with bell hooks, 1991)
- The Ethical Dimensions of Marxist Thought (1991)
- Beyond Eurocentrism and Multiculturalism (1993)
- Race Matters (1994)
- Keeping Faith: Philosophy and Race in America (1994)
- Jews and Blacks: A Dialogue on Race, Religion, and Culture in America (with rabbi Michael Lerner, 1995)
- The Future of the Race (with Henry Louis Gates, Jr., 1996)
- Restoring Hope: Conversations on the Future of Black America (1997)
- The War Against Parents: What We Can Do For America's Beleaguered Moms and Dads (with Sylvia Ann Hewlett, 1998)
- The Future of American Progressivism (with Roberto Unger, 1998)
- The African-American Century: How Black Americans Have Shaped Our Century (with Henry Louis Gates, Jr., 2000)
- Democracy Matters: Winning the Fight Against Imperialism (2004)
- Commentary on The Matrix, Matrix Reloaded and Matrix Revolutions; see The Ultimate Matrix Collection (with Ken Wilber, 2004)
- Hope on a Tightrope: Words & Wisdom (2008)
- Brother West: Living & Loving Out Loud (2009)
- The Rich and the Rest of Us: A Poverty Manifesto (with Tavis Smiley, 2012)
- Pro+Agonist: The Art of Opposition (2012)
- Black Prophetic Fire (2014)
- Sketches of My Culture (2001)
- Street Knowledge (2004)
- Never Forget: A Journey of Revelations (2007) (with BMWMB)
- Guest appearances
- E-40 - "Born in the Struggle" from Revenue Retrievin': Overtime Shift (2011)
- Bootsy Collins - "Freedumb" from Tha Funk Capital of the World (2011)
- Immortal Technique - "Sign of the Times" from The Martyr (2011)
- Brother Ali - "Letter to My Countrymen" from Mourning in America and Dreaming in Color (2012)
- Africana philosophy
- American philosophy
- Black existentialism
- Christian left
- Democratic Socialists of America
- List of African American philosophers
- List of American philosophers
- "Cornel West". Aljazeera.com. 2010-03-11. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
- "Cornel West - Center for African American Studies". Princeton.edu. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
- Debenedetti, Gabriel (2011-12-01). "Cornel West to Retire From Princeton - Center for African American Studies". Princeton.edu. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
- Utsnyc.edu[dead link]
- "Contemporary « Research Pragmatism Cybrary". Pragmatism.org. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
- "Cornel Ronald West". Contemporary Black Biography, Volume 33. Ed. Ashyia Henderson. Gale Group, 2002. Reproduced in Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Mich.: The Gale Group. 2004.
- "Cornel West y la política de conversión". Thomas Ward. Resistencia cultural: La nación en el ensayo de las Américas. Lima: Universidad Ricardo Palma, 2004, pp. 344–348.
- Nishikawa, Kinohi. "Cornel West." The Greenwood Encyclopedia of African American Literature. Ed. Hans Ostrom and J. David Macey, Jr. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2005. 1714–18.
- Cornelwest.com[dead link]
- "Tavis Smiley, Cornell West ending their public radio show in December". targetmarketnews.com. Retrieved April 26, 2015.
- "Smiley and West – Noam Chomsky: The Final Smiley and West". Oppression Monitor Daily. Retrieved April 26, 2015.
- "Cornel West - Professor of Philosophy - Biography". Egs.edu. 1953-07-02. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
- Elder, Robert (1998). "Prisoner of Hope". inFlux. University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication. Retrieved January 21, 2002.
- "Cornel West Biography". Enotes.com. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
- smitty, Fahizah (June 4, 1999). "Opening Doors: Irene West Gave Her All as a Teacher and Principal, Now, a New School Honors Her Name and Hard Work". Sacramento Bee.
- West, Cornel (August 13, 2000). The Cornel West Reader. ISBN 978-0-465-09110-2.
- "Author Cornel West to Speak in Robsham Theater Oct. 30". The Boston College Chronicle. October 21, 2004. Retrieved January 1, 2013.
- Goodman, Amy (September 30, 2009). "Dr. Cornel West Releases Long-Awaited Memoir, "Brother West: Living and Loving Out Loud"". Democracy Now. Retrieved April 21, 2012.
- Mendieta, Eduardo (2007). Global Fragments: Globalizations, Latinamericanisms, and Critical Theory. Albany, N.Y.: State University of New York Press. p. 173. ISBN 978-0-7914-7257-6.
- "Ethics, historicism and the Marxist tradition". Retrieved October 27, 2009.
- Henderson, Ashyia, ed. (2002). "Cornel Ronald West". Contemporary Black Biography 33. Farmington Hills, Mich.: Gale Group. Retrieved October 22, 2011.
- Aaseng, Nathan, ed. (2003). "Cornel West". African-American Religious Leaders. New York: Facts on File. p. 237. ISBN 0-8160-4878-9.
- Duke, Lynn (August 16, 2002). "Cornel West's difficult road to Princeton". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 22, 2011.
- "Other Key Moments in the Department". Department of African and African American Studies, Harvard University. Retrieved October 22, 2011.
- Goodstein, Laurie (November 16, 2011). "Cornel West to Take a Job in New York". New York Times. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
- Goodstein, Laurie (November 16, 2011). "Cornel West Returning to Union Theological Seminary". The New York Times.
- "NSP Co-Founders". Network of Spiritual Progressives. Retrieved October 22, 2011.
- "Board of Directors and Advisors". International Bridges to Justice. Retrieved October 22, 2011.
- "Special Recognitions 2008". World Cultural Council. Retrieved August 19, 2013.
- Dawson, Horace; Edward Brooke, Henry Ponder, Vinton R. Anderson, Bobby William Austin, Ron Dellums, Kenton Keith, Huel D. Perkins, Charles Rangel, Clathan McClain Ross, and Cornel West (July 2006). "The Centenary Report of the Alpha Phi Alpha World Policy Council" (PDF). Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity. Retrieved May 23, 2011.
- "All and Nothing: The Unreal World of Cornel West," The New Republic, March 6, 1995, pp. 31–36.
- Fletcher, Michael A.; Ferdinand, Pamela (April 13, 2002). "Cornel West Quitting Harvard". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 22, 2011.
- Agger, Michael. FILM; And the Oscar for Best Scholar . . .. The New York Times. May 18, 2003. Retrieved March 7, 2011.
- Pratt, Doug. The Ultimate Matrix Collection. The Hollywood Reporter via AllBusiness. December 6, 2004. Retrieved March 7, 2011.
- "Examined Life (2008) – Plot Summary".
- "Real Time with Bill Maher: Full Cast and Crew". Retrieved April 21, 2012.
- Rhonda Hammer; Douglas Kellner. "Academic Scandals and the Broadcast Media" (PDF). Gseis.ucla.edu. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
- Blake, Meredith (May 17, 2012). "30 Rock: "What Will Happen To The Gang Next Year?"". The A.V. Club.
- Han, Lisa. Cornel West Theory. Daily Princetonian. February 4, 2010. Retrieved March 7, 2011.
- Cornish, Audie N. (November 6, 2001). "Harvard Professor Makes Hip-Hop CD". Washington Post. Retrieved October 21, 2014.
- Swan, Rachel (April 21, 2004). "Cornel West - Street Knowledge". East Bay Express. Retrieved October 21, 2014.
- Johnson, Brett (September 6, 2007). "CD Review: Cornel West". Tucson Citizen. Retrieved October 21, 2014.
- McDonald, Rebecca (October 27, 2011). "Immortal Technique talks about his new free album The Martyr and Occupy MN". City Pages. Retrieved October 21, 2014.
- Patrin, Nate (September 19, 2012). "Brother Ali: Mourning In America and Dreaming In Color". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved October 21, 2014.
- "Who is Cornel West?". Cable News Network. Associated Press. January 10, 2002. Archived from the original on December 26, 2007. Retrieved January 21, 2008.
- Steinberg, Jacques (November 29, 2001). "At Odds With Harvard President, Black-Studies Stars Eye Princeton". The New York Times (New York City: The New York Times Company). Retrieved January 21, 2008.
- Belluck, Pam; Jacques Steinberg (April 16, 2002). "Defector Indignant at President of Harvard". The New York Times (New York City: The New York Times Company). Retrieved January 21, 2008.
- "Cornel West Outlines "Pull toward Princeton" and "Push from Harvard" in Exclusive Interview with NPR's Tavis Smiley". Npr.org. January 7, 2002. Retrieved March 7, 2011.
- Jacques R. Fresco (April 24, 2002). "Cornel West's Analogy". The New York Times.
- Campbell, Andrew C. (October 16, 2002). "Ripped from Harvard Headlines | News | The Harvard Crimson". Thecrimson.com. Retrieved March 7, 2011.
- Cornel West, Race Matters, p. 27, 2001 edition, ISBN 978-0-8070-0972-7
- Cornel West, Democracy Matters, p. 20, 2004, ISBN 0-14-303583-5
- "Cornel West arrested; video of #FergusonOctober from Fusion’s Tim Pool". Fusion.net. Retrieved 13 October 2014.
- "Cornel West in Ferguson: ‘I Came Here to Go to Jail’". Truth Dig. Truth Dig. Retrieved 13 October 2014.
- Joseph, Cameron; Siemaszko, Corky (August 10, 2015). "Cornel West among dozens of protesters arrested at St. Louis courthouse as state of emergency declared in Missouri". New York Daily News. Retrieved August 11, 2015.
- West, Cornel (1999). The Cornel West Reader. New York: Basic Civitas Books. p. 13. ISBN 0-465-09109-1.
- Cornel West. The Ultimate Matrix Collection.
- Cornel West, Democracy Matters, p. 58, 2004, ISBN 0-14-303583-5
- Cornel West, Democracy Matters, p. 101, 2004, ISBN 0-14-303583-5
- Theglobalist.com[dead link]
- Givhan, Robin (January 25, 2002). "Cornel West, Cloaked in Street Smarts". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 22, 2011.
- "Senators Hillary Clinton and John Kerry are exemplary paternalistic nihilists... Their centrist or conservative policies... are opportunistic efforts to satisfy centrist or conservative constituencies." Cornel West, Democracy Matters, p. 35-36, 2004, ISBN 0-14-303583-5
- Montgomery, David (April 12, 2002). "Peace Demonstrators Arrested, Without Much Conviction". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 22, 2011.
- "Thoughts on Anti-Semitism". Supportcom.com. December 6, 2005. Retrieved March 7, 2011.
- Nomordeaths.org[dead link]
- "Call + Response". Callandresponse.com. Retrieved March 7, 2011.
- "Cornel West on Occupy Wall Street: It’s the Makings of a U.S. Autumn Responding to the Arab Spring". Democracy Now. September 29, 2011. Retrieved September 30, 2011.
- Thisltethwaite, Susan Brooks (October 17, 2011). "Dr. Cornel West honors Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by going to jail". The Washington Post. Retrieved April 21, 2012.
- Carbone, Nick (October 22, 2011). "Cornel West Arrested Again at Occupy Protest". Time. Retrieved April 21, 2012.
- Parker Aab, Stacy (October 30, 2007). "Obama, Race, and the Right Side of History". The Huffington News (HuffingtonPost.com, Inc.). Retrieved January 21, 2008.
- "Cornel West Comments on Obama's Nobel Peace Prize: Hard to Be War President with Peace Prize". The Huffington Post. October 10, 2009. Retrieved October 28, 2009.
- Schneider, Matt. "Wild Shoutfest Between Al Sharpton And Cornel West On Obama And Race". mediaite.com. April 11, 2011. Retrieved 2011-4-11.
- "Chris Hedges: The Obama Deception: Why Cornel West Went Ballistic - Chris Hedges". Truthdig.com. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
- Kirell, Andrew (November 12, 2012). "Cornel West: Obama A ‘Republican In Blackface,’ Black MSNBC Hosts Are ‘Selling Their Souls’". Mediaite. Retrieved November 28, 2012.
- "An Interview with Cornel West on Occupy, Obama and Marx". CounterPunch. November 30, 2012.
- Harris-Perry, Melissa (May 17, 2011). "Cornel West vs. Barack Obama". The Nation. Retrieved 2012-12-11.
- Jack Mirkinson (November 13, 2012). "Cornel West: MSNBC's Black Hosts 'Sold Their Souls' For Obama Access". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 2012-12-11.
- "Cornel West & Tavis Smiley on Obama: 'Many of Us Are Exploring Other Possibilities in Coming Election'". Democracy Now!. August 9, 2011. Retrieved April 21, 2012.
- Thomas Frank (August 24, 2014). "Cornel West: "He posed as a progressive and turned out to be counterfeit. We ended up with a Wall Street presidency, a drone presidency"". Salon. Retrieved 2014-08-31.
- "Civil Rights Activist Cornel West Throws Support Behind Bernie Sanders". Ring of Fire. August 19, 2015. Retrieved August 19, 2015.
- Bernie Sanders Gets Stamp of Approval From Cornel West. The New York Times. August 25, 2015.
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Cornel West|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Cornel West.|
- Official website
- Cornel West at the Internet Movie Database
- Cornel West discography at Discogs
- Appearances on C-SPAN