Black Power movement

Black Power movement
Part of the aftermath of the Civil Rights Movement
Black Panther convention2.jpg
Black Panther at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, June 1970
Date1965–1985
Location
United States

The Black Power movement emphasized racial pride, economic empowerment, and the creation of political and cultural institutions for black people in the United States.

The movement grew out of the Civil rights movement, as black activists experimented with forms of self-advocacy ranging from political lobbying to armed struggle. The Black Power movement served as a focal point for the view that reformist and pacifist elements of the Civil Rights Moment were not effective in changing race relations.

Motivated by a desire for safety and self-sufficiency that was not available inside redline neighborhoods, Black Power activists founded black-owned bookstores, food cooperatives, farms, media, printing presses, schools, clinics and ambulance services.[1][2][3][4][5][6] The international impact of the movement includes the Black Power Revolution in Trinidad and Tobago.[7]

While black American thinkers such as Robert F. Williams and Malcolm X influenced the early Black Power movement, the Black Panther Party and its views are widely seen as the cornerstone. It was influenced by philosophies such as pan-Africanism, black nationalism and socialism, as well as contemporary events like the Cuban Revolution and the decolonization of Africa.[8]

At the movement's peak in the early 1970s, some of its more militant leaders were killed during conflicts with police, prompting many activists to abandon the movement.

Background

The first popular use of the term "Black Power" as a social and racial slogan was by Stokely Carmichael (later known as Kwame Ture) and Willie Ricks (later known as Mukasa Dada), both organizers and spokespersons for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. On June 16, 1966, in a speech in Greenwood, Mississippi, during the March Against Fear, Carmichael led the marchers in a chant for black power that was televised nationally.[9]

By the late 1960s, Black Power came to represent the demand for more immediate violent action to counter American white supremacy. Most of these ideas were influenced by Malcolm X's criticism of Martin Luther King Jr.'s peaceful protest methods. The 1965 assassination of Malcolm X coupled with the urban uprisings of 1964 and 1965 ignited the movement. New organizations that supported Black Power philosophies ranging from socialism to black nationalism, including the Black Panther Party, grew to prominence.[10]

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