Frank Marshall Davis

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Frank Marshall Davis (December 31, 1905 - July 26, 1987) was a journalist, poet, pornographer, Communist Party member and mentor to Barack Obama. Davis was born in Arkansas City, Kansas. He studied journalism at Friends University in 1923 and Kansas State Agricultural College from 1924 to 1929 but failed to receive a degree.

He later made a career for himself as an editor and writer in the Chicago and Atlanta areas working for Black newspapers and the Associated Negro Press. From January to September 1928 he worked at a Marxist-Leninist newspaper called The Whip.[1] In Chicago Davis was a faculty member of the communist-run Abraham Lincoln School.

Davis was known to drink heavily, used drugs, and engage in perverted sexual encounters, often involving group sex. Davis married a white woman from Chicago, Helen Canfield; they divorced in 1970.

Communist subversion in Hawaii

In 1948 Davis and his wife moved to Hawaii taking the advice of fellow communist and noted Black celebrity Paul Robeson. Robeson believed Hawaii would show more tolerance toward interracial couples. While in Hawaii, Davis wrote for Honolulu Record, a Communist newspaper. In 1951 the Hawaiian Commission on Subversive Activities identified Frank Marshall Davis as a Communist Party member.

Association with Obama’s grandfather

In the 1960s Davis became friends with Stanley Dunham, Obama’s White grandfather. Davis first met Barack Obama in 1970. Some would later describe the two as having a father-son relationship. Obama refers to him in his book, Dreams From My Father as "Frank". Barack Obama would see Davis at times and consult him on matters relating to race and identity. Maya Soetoro-Ng, Obama's half-sister, told the Associated Press that her grandfather saw Davis as “a point of connection, a bridge if you will, to the larger African-American experience for my brother".

In 1979 as Obama was preparing to go to college, Davis offer the young man some advice.

“Understand something, boy. You’re not going to college to get educated. You’re going there to get trained.” “…they’ll tank on your chain and let you know that you may be a well-trained, well-paid nigger, but you’re a nigger just the same.”

Pornographic author

Davis was the author of a hard-core pornographic autobiography, Sex Rebel: Black published in San Diego in 1968 by Greenleaf Classics under the pseudonym Bob Greene, which describes in lurid detail sordid sexual encounters, often involving group sex. In which he stated that “under certain circumstances I am bisexual” Mr Davis would go to parks looking for couples or female tourists to have sex with.

See also

External links


  1. Writings of Frank Marshall Davis: a voice of the black press, By Frank Marshall Davis, John Edgar Tidwell, page xx

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