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African-American Culture and History

The Black Power movement emphasized racial pride, economic empowerment, and the creation of political and cultural institutions for African-American 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-Africanismblack nationalism and socialism, as well as contemporary events including 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.