The Black Community and the Affective Compact
Although most of the episodes of the first season of Soul! are no longer available, an early episode including Novella Nelson, the Last Poets, and Marion Williams illustrates how the show worked to construct an “affective compact” with viewers. The affective compact encompassed the show’s mode of address, its myriad subtle ways of connecting with viewers, and its formal strategies of including the audience within its representations. As a local production of New York public television, Soul! gave voice to progressive critiques subject to censorship on commercial television. Its first season also saw the banding together of the Soul! audience, which successfully rallied for a second season after the Ford Foundation decided to withdraw its grant funding.
Ellis B. Haizlip Papers (gift of Doris Sanders), Anacostia Community Museum Archives, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC.
Ford Foundation Archives, Rockefeller Archive Center, New York, NY.
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts Archives, New York, NY.
National Public Broadcasting Archives, University of Maryland, College Park, MD.
WNET Archives, New York, NY.
WNET Collection; Motion Picture, Broadcast and Recorded Sound Division; Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Amiri Baraka, phone, August 5, 2009.
Alonzo Brown Jr., Washington, DC, June 26, 2009.
Ivan Curry, phone, July 7, 2009.
Carlos de Jesus, New York City, August 13, 2009.
Walter Fields, phone, July 20, 2009.
Vertamae Grosvenor, Washington, DC, August 28, 2009.
Harold Haizlip, phone, August 31, 2009.
Thomas Allen Harris, phone, September 16, 2009.
Nona Hendryx, phone, June 24, 2009.
Anna Horsford, phone, November 14, 2007.
Al Johnson, phone, July 22, 2009.
Florence Ladd, phone, October 4, 2012.
Felipe Luciano, phone, June 2 and July 7, 2009.
Christopher “Kit” Lukas, phone, March 11, 2009.
Novella Nelson, New York City, June 29, 2009.
Valerie Patterson, phone, August 4, 2009.
Alvin Poussaint, phone, July 15, 2009.
Bobby Sanabria, phone, July 29, 2009.
Cheryl Sanders, Washington, August 12, 2009.
Sarah-Ann Shaw, phone, October 14, 2009.
Andrew Stern, phone, February 16, 2013.
Roland Washington, phone, July 12, 2009.
Jack Willis, phone, September 10, 2009.
Camille Yarbrough, phone, February 6, 2009.