Cover for Jeffries: Black Power in the Belly of the Beast. Click for larger image

Black Power in the Belly of the Beast

The first serious study of the diverse organizations associated with the resurgence of Black nationalism in the 1960s

Despite the growing scholarly interest in the civil rights movement, to date there has been no comprehensive examination of the Black Power movement. Black Power in the Belly of the Beast fills this gap by providing the first in-depth look at the Black Power movement from the 1963 founding of the Revolutionary Action Movement (RAM) to the Black Power movementís demise in the mid-1970s.

The volumeís twelve contributors include well-known scholars such as James A. Geschwender and Douglas Glasgow as well as prominent community activists Akbar Muhammad Ahmad, Floyd W. Hayes III, and Komozi Woodard. Each of their chapters explores a single Black Power organization including Us, the Black Panther Party, and the Deacons for Defense and Justice. Important but lesser-known Black Power organizations such as the Republic of New Afrika and Sons of Watts are paid equal attention, as contributors address issues including self-defense, black identity, and the politics of class and gender. Throughout, authors emphasize the primary role that black institutions and charismatic leaders played in the rise, development, and eventual decline of the overall movement.

"Black Power in the Belly of the Beast offers a unique and comprehensive review of the other social and political movements that occurred among African Americans during the 1960s and 1970s. . . . The collection is recommended for academic library collections and for scholars in African-American studies."--Multicultural Review

"Black Power in the Belly of the Beast provides essential history for anti-racist activists to understand the complexities of the movements that have come before us and to aid us in building the struggles against racism today."--International Socialist Review

"[Black Power in the Belly of the Beast] is compelling because it rehearses the dominant recitation foraged from contemporary Black Power manifestos, interviews, documentaries, and the autobiographies which followed."--Journal of African American History

Judson L. Jeffries is an associate professor of political science and American studies at Purdue University. His most recent book is Urban America and Its Police. Tiyi M. Morris is an assistant professor of history at DePauw University.

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