Black Against Empire: The History and Politics of the Black Panther Party

Fredrick Harris writes:

Black against Empire is the first comprehensive history of the party, a history which, as Bloom and Martin explain, has been mostly ‘forbidden’. What has been told has come in memoirs, biographies, speeches, journalistic accounts, documentaries and the writings of prominent Panthers. We have come to know – though not terribly well – the comrades of the struggle who gained international notoriety, mostly through celebrated trials: Huey Newton, Bobby Seale, David Hilliard, Eldridge Cleaver, Kathleen Cleaver, Ericka Huggins, Elaine Brown. But rather than focusing on the sensationalist and salacious aspects of the party’s history – the confrontations, violence, criminality – Bloom and Martin choose to recount its history through its ideological underpinnings and the dynamics of social movements.

(LRB 20 June 2013)

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