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New Day in Babylon: The Black Power Movement and American Culture, 1965-1975

Overview

With a gift for storytelling and an ear for street talk, William Van Deburg has written the most comprehensive account available of the rise and fall of the Black Power movement - and of its dramatic transformation of both African-American and the larger American culture. New Day in Babylon chronicles a decade of deep change, from the armed struggles of the Black Panther Party and the separatism of the Nation of Islam to the cultural nationalism of artists and writers creating a new black aesthetic. If its ...
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Overview

With a gift for storytelling and an ear for street talk, William Van Deburg has written the most comprehensive account available of the rise and fall of the Black Power movement - and of its dramatic transformation of both African-American and the larger American culture. New Day in Babylon chronicles a decade of deep change, from the armed struggles of the Black Panther Party and the separatism of the Nation of Islam to the cultural nationalism of artists and writers creating a new black aesthetic. If its tactical gains were sometimes short-lived, the Black Power movement did succeed in making a revolution - one in culture and consciousness that has changed the context of race in America. Drawing on a remarkable range of cultural expressions, from the voice of Malcolm X to the music of James Brown, from urban folklore, the visual arts, and religion to the language of soul, Van Deburg extracts the enduring cultural and psychological themes that ran through the ideologies of Black Power politics. For Van Deburg, Black Power was, underneath it all, a revolt rooted in culture - both high and low - as artists, writers, performers, politicians, and ordinary people alike begin to assert a distinctive African-American worldview and way of being. His book is a finely textured rendering of the years when the rhetoric of the gun gave way to an explosion of cultural forms that, in celebrating the uniqueness of African-American life, carried forward the militant philosophy of resistance, pride, and self-esteem. Like activists in the sixties and seventies, African-Americans today mobilize a rich variety of cultural resources in the struggle for group identity and racial justice. Whether in the films of Spike Lee or other new black directors, in rap music, or in experiments in Afrocentric education, African-Americans continue to reshape the contours of American values, ideals, and attitudes. This is the real legacy of the Black Power movement. And it has never been demonstra
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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Van Deburg (Afro-American studies, U. of Wisconsin, Madison) does a great service by documenting and interpreting a decade of deep change. Those who seek a course for the future would do well to study the voices of that period's political and cultural explosion. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780226847153
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • Publication date: 8/1/1993
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 388
  • Sales rank: 848,637
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author


Prior to his retirement, William L. Van Deburg was the Evjue-Bascom Professor of Afro-American Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His previous books include New Day in Babylon: The Black Power Movement and American Culture, 1965-1975 and Black Camelot: African-American Culture Heroes in Their Times, 1960-1980, both published by the University of Chicago Press.
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Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction: A Black Power Paradigm 1
1 What Is "Black Power"? 11
2 Precursors and Preconditions: Why Was There a Black Power Movement? 29
3 Who Were the "Militants"? 63
Black Power on Campus 64
Black Power in Sports 82
Black Power and Labor 92
Black Power and "Total Institutions" 97
4 The Ideologies of Black Power 112
Pluralism 113
Nationalism 129
5 Black Power in Afro-American Culture: Folk Expressions 192
Soul Style 194
Soul Music 204
Soulful Talk 216
Soulful Tales 224
Soul Theology 236
6 Black Power and American Culture: Literary and Performing Arts 248
Defining "Whitey" 260
Identifying "Toms" 265
Understanding Black History 272
Achieving Liberation 280
Conclusion: Whatever Happened to Black Power? 292
Notes 309
Index 371
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