“There Is No New Black Panther Party”: The Panther-Like Formations and the Black Power Resurgence of the 1990s – The Journal of African American History – article

“There Is No New Black Panther Party”: The Panther-Like Formations and the Black Power Resurgence of the 1990s

George Derek Musgrove | The Journal of African American History

2019-11-19

Today a new Black Power struggle has captured the African American imagination. As a ballooning racial wealth gap, conservative attacks on voting rights, and a rash of police killings shattered African American millennials ’ faith in liberal multiculturalism, young African Americans created a series of militant protest organizations that have since been grouped under the mon-iker Black Lives Matter. Inspired by the imagery and tactics of the Civil Rights and Black Power Movements, and building off of the work of the black Left, queer, and womanist intellectuals who had operated on the edges of—and of-ten criticized—the more conservative elements of the resurgence, these activ-ists have emerged as a powerful voice for the most marginal members of the African American community. While inspired by the historical example and symbolism of the Black Panther Party, they have not tried to create Panther-like groups. 92 Having come of age in an era when the most visible Panther-like for-mation —the NBPP —re flected the pro-capitalist, narrow nationalist, and pater-nalist politics of the late resurgence, they bypassed it as they searched for sym-bols, ideas, and activists to wage the struggle. Like generations before them, Black Lives Matter activists have examined the rich history of the black freedom struggle, taken what they needed, and fashioned a new politics for a new time.

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