Acceptance or Challenge?
Thank you for talking to me, Africa: Multiculturalism and black urban America
Abstract: Although the Black Power Movement is typically thought of as a violent and dramatic assault on American social order, the movement proved to have a far-reaching impact on the American culture. While Black Power appeared to depart from the nonviolent paradigm of the Civil Rights Movement, it effectively fostered the same ideological and social concepts which were a prominent feature of the Civil Rights struggle. Hence, rather than a break from the historical development of black politics, the new movement features firmly as a stage in that development. Adapting the ideas which infused the Civil Rights Movement to slightly different aims, Black Power left a lasting mark on the American culture, propelling a search for ethnic/ “racial” “roots” among Americans of all shades and colours. Rather than assaulting American culture, Black Power can be said to have birthed the contemporary American multiculturalism.
Keywords: Black Power Movement, Civil Rights Movement, Black Panther Party, US, Frantz Fanon, Black Arts Movement, funk, jazz, “blaxploitation”
Jeff Levy-Hinte’s Soul Power (2008), a documentary fashioned out of the remnants of the material used in Leon Gast’s Oscar-winning When We Were Kings (1996), may appear as merely an interesting footnote to an already too familiar story. After Michael Mann’s Ali (2001), featuring Will Smith’s superb performance as Muhammad Ali, the boxer’s trials and tribulations in his struggle for supremacy in sports seem to have become accepted as common knowledge, not only among boxing fans. But Levy-Hinte reverses the focus; the...
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