Last Updated 06 Jul 2020

Black Power Movement Critical Analysis

Category Minorities
Words 1099 (4 pages)
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America has seen itself change over and over again. America is the home of the free and the brave. However, this beautiful nation has not always been like this. America has had to go through many ups and many downs to beautify. Racial discrimination has played a huge role in American society. Even today, there are still racial inequalities. These racial inequalities are not as bad as they were in the early and mid nineteen hundreds though. Two of the biggest reasons that positive steps have been made towards eliminating racial inequality is the Harlem Renaissance and the Black Power Movement.

These two events helped shape who Americans are today. While these two events did not totally eliminate racial discrimination, they were huge rolls in shrinking it. These two events have many things in common, but also many differences. Without the Black Power Movement and the Harlem Renaissance, America would not be where we are today. Even though African Americans were enjoying the new terrain in the United States, they could tell that there was still something missing. They did everything in their power to help stop against racial discrimination.

They created new culture and went out of their ways to be viewed as a regular American. They referred to themselves as “New Negro’s” because they defined themselves by a sense of racial difference. They believed that they were living a totally different life and a whole new culture. Discrimination continued so the African Americans left the south to head to bigger and better cities with more opportunity. Many African Americans headed to New York and mainly Harlem. While here the “New Negro’s” started an uproar of their culture called the Harlem Renaissance.

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This event started in Harlem, the upper portion of Manhattan. The event turned Harlem in to a center of art and creativity. The Harlem Renaissance gave birth to many important African Americans. Multiple novelists and artists were born. The “New Negro’s” began to explore American blackness in America during the nineteen twenty’s and it’s origins from Africa. One of the first noticeable events of the Renaissance came after a man named Charles Johnson organized a civic club dinner.

Johnson constructed this dinner for the releasing of a book that had been written by a black author that Johnson believed had potential. The dinner was a total success and white people enjoyed the book. For the first time in history, white operated publishing houses published books that were written by Negros. Better than that, some white people started to promote the books as well. The Harlem Renaissance also helped influence black musicians to perform in front of white people. The Harlem Renaissance for the first major step that Americans took on the way to becoming civilized.

The Renaissance gave birth to music, art, literature, and dance throughout Harlem and America. This wonderful event however came to an end in the mid nineteen thirty’s. The great depression played a role in ending this marvelous event. Financial needs became more important than the expression of art and music. Many Blacks artists from the Renaissance had to leave Harlem to find jobs in other places. Even with having to move some of the African American writers art continued to still be published. The Black Power Movement played out in a far more violent way than the Harlem Renaissance.

More than 300 race riots broke out between nineteen sixty four and nineteen sixty nine. These riots really put the gap between a great society and the reality of an African American in to perspective. More and more violence was spread throughout Harlem when a fifteen year old Black boy was shot by a white police officer in nineteen sixty four. In August of nineteen sixty five things went from bad to worse. In just five days, more than one thousand fires had been burned, and thirty four lives had been taken in Los Angeles.

The Black Power Movement developed a saying. Stokely Carmichael said, “What we are gonna start saying now is Black Power! ”. This saying was interpreted in many different ways. The most common interpretation cam from the Black Panthers though. The Black Panthers were initially started to protect the black neighborhoods from the white officers. The group was formed in Oakland, California by Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale. The Panthers also started schools and tried to promote peace. However, they ended up becoming known for their violence.

Because of the Black Panthers violence, the Black Power saying became known as hostile to both blacks and whites. The Black Power Movement also sparked the freedom of speech movement at the University of California at Berkley in nineteen sixty four. Americans had not seen anything like the protests at Berkley and these protests lead to “counterculture”. Counterculture was all about rock and roll music, drugs, and sex. Counterculture gave us bands like The Beatles, and The Rolling Stones. Students then rebelled even further to demand that dorms should be a mix between male and female.

The Black Power Movement brought a whole new outlook to America. Although there was a lot of violence going on during this time, America took positive steps as well. Americans are still affected by this movement today. The Black Power Movement slowly came to and end in the early nineteen seventy’s, yet we still feel the effects today. The Harlem Renaissance and Black Power Movement have many things in common, yet have just as many differences. Both of these crucial events blossomed very important black and white people.

The Harlem Renaissance focused more on the art of music and literature, while the Black Power Movement was more about the reality of an African American. They both had a huge impact on Americans, whether the impact was positive or negative. These two events were very different as well. The violence in the Harlem Renaissance was nothing compared to the violence in the Black Power Movement. The Black Power Movement killed multiple people while the Harlem Renaissance did the complete opposite. The Harlem Renaissance sparked more of an art and literature movement.

Without the Black Power Movement and the Harlem Renaissance, America would not be where we are today. These two events are major in American History. America is known as the home of the free and the brave. However, America has not always been this way and even today we still suffer from racism and segregation. Racial inequalities played a huge role back during this events. If there was no racial inequalities none of these events probably would have happened. America is shaped the way we are today because of the events of our country’s past.

Works Cited

http://www.biography.com/blackhistory/harlem-renaissance.jsp

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Black Power Movement Critical Analysis. (2017, Apr 10). Retrieved from https://phdessay.com/black-power-movement/

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