Black Power: Radical Politics and African American Identity

Black Power: Radical Politics and African American Identity

by Jeffrey O. G. Ogbar

Paperback(updated edition)

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In the 1960s and 70s, the two most important black nationalist organizations, the Nation of Islam and the Black Panther Party, gave voice and agency to the most economically and politically isolated members of black communities outside the South. Though vilified as fringe and extremist, these movements proved to be formidable agents of influence during the civil rights era, ultimately giving birth to the Black Power movement.

Drawing on deep archival research and interviews with key participants, Jeffrey O. G. Ogbar reconsiders the commingled stories of—and popular reactions to—the Nation of Islam, Black Panthers, and mainstream civil rights leaders. Ogbar finds that many African Americans embraced the seemingly contradictory political agenda of desegregation and nationalism. Indeed, black nationalism, he demonstrates, was far more favorably received among African Americans than historians have previously acknowledged. It engendered minority pride and influenced the political, cultural, and religious spheres of mainstream African American life for the decades to come.

This updated edition of Ogbar's classic work contains a new preface that describes the book's genesis and links the Black Power movement to the Black Lives Matter movement. A thoroughly updated essay on sources contains a comprehensive review of Black Power–related scholarship. Ultimately, Black Power reveals a black freedom movement in which the ideals of desegregation through nonviolence and black nationalism marched side by side.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781421429762
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
Publication date: 03/19/2019
Edition description: updated edition
Pages: 296
Sales rank: 1,204,486
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Jeffrey O. G. Ogbar is a professor of history and the director of the Center for the Study of Popular Music at the University of Connecticut. He is the author of Hip-Hop Revolution: The Culture and Politics of Rap and the editor of The Harlem Renaissance Revisited: Politics, Arts, and Letters.

Table of Contents

Preface to the Updated Edition
Preface to the First Edition
Introduction. For the People and of the People: Black Nationalism,
Identity, and Popular Culture
Chapter 1. An Organization of the Living: The Nation of Islam and
Black Popular Culture
Chapter 2. "There Go My People": The Civil Rights Movement,
Black Nationalism, and Black Power
Chapter 3. A Party for the People: The Black Freedom Movement
and the Rise of the Black Panther Party
Chapter 4. Swimming with the Masses: The Black Panthers,
Lumpenism, and Revolutionary Culture
Chapter 5. "Move Over or We'll Move Over on You": Black Power
and the Decline of the Civil Rights Movement
Chapter 6. Rainbow Radicalism: The Rise of Radical Ethnic
Conclusion. Power and the People
Epilogue. Black Nationalism after Jim Crow
Essay on Sources

What People are Saying About This

William L. Van Deburg

Jeffrey Ogbar's wonderfully evocative study greatly enhances our understanding of the Nation of Islam, the Black Panther Party, and the impact these groups had on Black Power era notions of self-love and collective identity. It is a welcome addition to the still-small body of scholarship which seeks to document the influence of African-American nationalist beliefs on contemporary culture and politics.

William L. Van Deburg, University of Wisconsin-Madison, author of New Day in Babylon: The Black Power Movement and American Culture, 1965-1975

Brian Ward

Will be a lasting contribution to the scholarship on the African American freedom struggle, on the ways in which gender and class are implicated in the construction of racial and ethnic identities, and on American race relations more generally.

Brian Ward, University of Florida

Komozi Woodard

Black Power is a distinct contribution to the new scholarship on the Black freedom movement. Ogbar is among the best of a new generation of imaginative and critical scholars, probing past assumptions and challenging old understandings of such groups as the Black Panther Party and the Nation of Islam. While Ogbar's analysis is bound to become the center of lively debates, his singular interpretation rests on sound research, including an impressive array of movement interviews.

Komozi Woodard, Sarah Lawrence College, author of A Nation within a Nation: Amiri Baraka and Black Power Politics

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