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Nation Within a Nation: Amiri Baraka (Leroi Jones) and Black Power Politicsby Komozi Woodard
Synopses & Reviews
Poet and playwright Amiri Baraka is best known as one of the African American writers who helped ignite the Black Arts Movement. This book examines Baraka's cultural approach to Black Power politics and explores his role in the phenomenal spread of black nationalism in the urban centers of late-twentieth-century America, including his part in the election of black public officials, his leadership in the Modern Black Convention Movement, and his work in housing and community development.
Komozi Woodard traces Baraka's transformation from poet to political activist, as the rise of the Black Arts Movement pulled him from political obscurity in the Beat circles of Greenwich Village, swept him into the center of the Black Power Movement, and ultimately propelled him into the ranks of black national political leadership. Moving outward from Baraka's personal story, Woodard illuminates the dynamics and remarkable rise of black cultural nationalism with an eye toward the movement's broader context, including the impact of black migrations on urban ethos, the importance of increasing population concentrations of African Americans in the cities, and the effect of the 1965 Voting Rights Act on the nature of black political mobilization.
In giving us much to discuss and debate in its richly informative and insightful pages, [this book] deserves the widest possible audience.
American Quarterly A well-researched, decidedly worthwhile study that enhances our understanding of Black Power stratagems.
American Historical Review The best published work on the black power movement to date.
Journal of American History The author does an excellent job of exploring the complexities of the modern black struggle for freedom in America.
American Studies The most important book to be written about the Black Power Movement.
The Gaither Reporter
Examines Amiri Baraka•s cultural approach to Black Power politics and explores his role in the spread of black nationalism in the urban centers of the late 20th-century America.
About the Author
Komozi Woodard is professor of American history at Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, New York. He has also worked extensively as an activist and journalist.
Table of Contents
Part I. Rise
1. Groundwork: The Impact of Fidel Castro, Patrice Lumumba, Robert F. Williams, and Malcolm X on Amiri Baraka and the Black Arts Movement
2. Black Fire: Imamu Amiri Baraka and the Newark Uprising
3. The Ballot or the Bullet? The Politics of Cultural Nationalism in Newark
4. The Modernization of Cultural Nationalism: The Black and Puerto Rican Convention and the Election of Newark's First Black Mayor
Part II. Zenith and Decline
5. It's Nation Time: Building a National Black Political Community
6. Hard Facts: Kawaida Towers and the Dilemma of Cultural Nationalism in Black America
Conclusion: Winter in America
Baraka filming Black Spring
Baraka after release from prison in 1968
"Stop Killer Cops" campaign booklet
Baraka, leader of the Congress of African People
Baba Mshauri with Ras Baraka and Saidi Komozi
The Malaika, women of the Newark Congress of African People
Super Simba Boot Dancers
Baraka's cultural group, The Advanced Workers
Ras and Shani Baraka
Obalaji Baraka selling Unity and Struggle newspaper
Baraka with Kenneth Gibson, Dennis Westbrooks, and Albert Cleage
Baraka speaking at Newark City Hall
The Barakas at Kenneth Gibson's inauguration as mayor of Newark
Baraka at the founding meeting of the Congress of African People
FBI memorandum targeting Baraka in 1970
Newark demonstration against Portuguese attack on Guinea
The Barakas at African Liberation Day march
Baraka and Naibu Mchochezi meet with Tanzanian officials
Malaika dance about women in the wars of African liberation
Baraka and Hoyt Fuller
Baraka organization's plan for the redevelopment of Newark's inner city
Baraka reading poetry
Baraka at the National Black Assembly in 1975
Amina Baraka and other New Jersey delegates at National Black Assembly
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