Talk:Black Power

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Pointed out that the term "black power" is racist, and removed "caucasian" as a term no longer in use with reference to the white race. All done in a NPOV framework. 13:10, 28 April 2006 (UTC)

Hi, my name is Joel - I'm the one that "fixed this stub". Yes, I did read the guidelines on being unbiased. The problem is, with certain political issues, even the English language itself is biased. For example the term "Black people" as opposed to "African people" - these terms are both biased. "Black people" or "African-Americans" takes away the national identity claimed by African Internationalists, Pan-Africanists, etc., whereas "African people" defines people as being members of a nation which they may not have chosen to be. Many Africans in the U.S. are taught that Africans on the continent are backward savages, and so of course they would be disgusted at the thought that they are Africans.
If anyone wishes to discuss other NPOV issues with this page, I'd be happy to hear your criticisms. In case I forget to check this talk page, my e-mail is <>.
just a though, think how messed up this article would sound if u replace black with white? anyways i dont support white suppremecist groups and actually im a leftist, but it just came across my mind. Jobe6 00:05, July 16, 2005 (UTC)
I wholly agree with you Joel, afterall, Africa is a great nation. Wake up. The English language is not racist, people are. And to be honest, Africa does have a lot of savages. Look at the genocide in Rwhanda. Africa right now is like Nazi Germany, except it's gangs angainst gangs, factions against factions. Also, maybe people didn't chant African American Power! because it's a little absurd and most Black Power organizations didn't want African-Americans, they wanted darkly pigmented people with heritage from central and southern Africa. Lest we forget that there are Middle Easterners and whites in Africa. Would these Middle Easterners and whites from Africa be accepted into these Black Power organizations? Did any of these Middle Easterners or whites that were natives of Africa start any Black Power organizations?

Oh, and for the record, I'm not some conservative whacko, which I know some one will end up calling me. Gold Stur 15:30, 30 August 2005 (UTC)

I also do agree except it's kind of awkward with this black and white power thing. They are two totally different things and one can't replace the other. I agree that it's not the country it's the people. This Black Power organisation was only for African Americans to feel confident about themselves. The Whites didn't listen and carried on making African Americans feel bad about being themselves. This is not right, for you should be proud of what you are and wher you come from. It just makes no sense... Intelligence105 08:07, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
So people standing up for themselves, helping their own community, creating jobs for their community under their own power with no outside help is racist? Seems like a shallow, frightened, emasculating way to view the situation that many still find themselves in.

Hi. The wiki article states that MLK never endorses/acknowledges the term Black Power, but he does in fact reference it in "Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community?" when he addresses the 1965 Watts Riots. Here is the quote: "A simple explanation holds that Negroes rioted in Watts, the voice of Black Power was heard through the land and the white backlash was born; the public became infuriated and sympathy evaporated." I'm pulling this out of a reader, so I can't reference the exact page. I'm also too lazy to edit this out of the actual article. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:07, 10 December 2012 (UTC)

One sided[edit]

I know this is a sensitive issue, but let's compare black power with white power for just a moment:

Black Power is a slogan which describes the aspiration of many people of varying degrees of African descent for national self-determination. The term describes a conscious choice for blacks to nurture and promote their own models of value, rather than look for other races to validate them. It calls for Blacks to identify their historical struggle and work to help themselves.

White Power has been described as a racist ideal which describes the aspiration of many people of varying degrees of European descent for recognition of their collective identity based on skin colour and what is perceived as a common 'white' culture. The term describes a desire to take pride in the state of being "White." This concept has been compared to related ideologies, such as 'Black Power' and 'Black Pride'. The phrase is thought to have been coined by George Lincoln Rockwell during a white supremacist rally in Marquedt Park, Illinois in 1967 (whereby the term began being uttered spontaneously). There is a distinct possibility that the term was coined as a reaction to the contemporary usage of the term Black Power. Today, many racialist ideological factions, such as White supremacists, White separatists, White nationalists, White Christians and Neo-Nazis, adhere to the term White Power. (part of the Neo-fascism series)

I think we're generally being slightly one-sided here. Notice how the term racism or racist isn't used in the black power article, except in reference to white power? Is it just me, or do others see this imbalance? --Joewithajay 13:57, 3 January 2006 (UTC)

The imbalance is appropriate. The terms are not parallel. Briefly, one groups doesn't have power and wants to get it. The other already has it and wants to preserve it. Those are very different situations. -Will Beback 19:25, 3 January 2006 (UTC)
Maybe we should specify that "Black Power" might be considered racist in a way? Not in those exact words of course, but do compare "black power" to a racist ideal in some way... Yangosplat222 (talk) 16:51, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

In the United States of America, the Black Power Movement grew from the racial oppression and violence that blacks experienced at the hands of whites during the Nonviolent Civil Rights Movement. Black Americans had witnessed countless acts of brutality against their communities and were not being protected by the police. So arming themselves for self-defense became a viable option. Utilizing the U.S. Constitutional right to bear arms, the Black Panther Party successful created a community policing organization, which protected the Black Citizens from the fascist police and empowered them to keep their guns close at hand, while they protested against the constant threat of violence and death in their communities. (talk) 03:10, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

The imbalance may not be appropriate: The idea that a person has power if white and does not have power if black is extremely racist. For instance, most poor people in the US are white. It is very easy to make a strong argument based on evidence that many white people experience racism, just as many black people do. What you have admitted, whether or not you realize it, is that both groups pursue power. For a Wikipedia article, what I think we should be pursuing is fairness. It is not fair to write, "Racism against whites can be justified in the context of slavery." It is, however, fair to say, "Racism against whites is often justified in the context of slavery." One is a judgment; the other is an observation.--Tibbets74 (talk) 08:42, 2 December 2008 (UTC)
Surely though, both sides are working toward the same goal? The only difference is they approaching it for different ends of the spectrum.--Crais459 14:57, 6 April 2006 (UTC)
They are not working toward the same goal. Whites are in a position of privilege. Blacks are not. Whites trying to maintain their situation of dominance/submission is not egalitarian. Black power is a movement to overthrow that situation of dominance/submission. Rmilligan 00:40, 28 August 2007 (UTC)
The imbalance is not correct. Black power used in certain ways IS racism. To deny that is just ignorant and bias.

That's very subjective. While I understand the cultural aspect, it doesn't really matter which group already has power since both - by definition of their names - are about obtaining power for, or due to, their race. There's no point in tip-toeing around black power - it's still racist, no matter how deserving it may be. Also, the current situation of a group shouldn't have any effect on how they're referred to - a set of beliefs isn't based on current situations, but rather on goals and values - things which would be timeless to the belief. --Joewithajay 00:11, 4 January 2006 (UTC)

I'd like to quote some of Malcom X's statements on the matter.
"If we react to white racism with a violent reaction, to me that's not Black racism. If you come to put a rope around my neck and I hang you for it, to me that's not racism. Yours is racism, but my reaction has nothing to do with racism."
On the subject of black nationalism, he said: "[W]e should control the economy of our community. Why should white people be running the banks in our community? Why should the economy of our community be in the hands of the white man? The social philosophy of Black nationalism only means that we have to get together and remove the evils, vices, alcoholism, drug addiction, and other evils that are destroying the moral fibre of our community." -Ceredhion 16:52, 29 March 2006 (UTC)
Racism = Prejudice + Power. White power is about maintaining a situation of dominance/submission. Black power is about overthrowing that structure. Rmilligan 00:40, 28 August 2007 (UTC)

I think we need to step back for a moment and consider the meaning of Racism (or more correctly, Racial Decrimination). The United Nations defines Racial Descrimination as: "any distinction, exclusion, restriction or preference based on race, colour, descent, or national or ethnic origin which has the purpose or effect of nullifying or impairing the recognition, enjoyment or exercise, on an equal footing, of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the political, economic, social, cultural or any other field of public life" In this context, ANY individual, group, organisation or nation that sets its own agenda over that of another based on the idea of race can be considered as advocating Racial Descrimination. Malcolm X, undoubtably a great and important political figure, was a racist. Personally, I believe in the idea of Meritocracy. To paraphrase another great and important political leader, I believe that people should "not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character".--Crais459 09:40, 6 April 2006 (UTC)

Racism = Prejudice + Power. By this definition (the most specific and accurate definition I've come across) it is impossible for a group without to be racist. Rmilligan 00:40, 28 August 2007 (UTC)

A couple of things:

One, racism and racial discrimination are not the same thing. Discrimination is an act--by an individual, or more importantly by an institution. Racism is a _system_ of oppression and subjucation based on perceived biological differencs and very much interconnected to the economic system capitalism in all its forms including imperialism/colonialism. Can individuals be racist? Yes. But if that's the extent of your (mis)understanding of racism, then you're missing the point. Racism is indeed connected to unequal structures of power.

The definition you are attempting to use for racism is not the standard definition from the dictionary. Yes, I too have seen it in a couple of academic papers, but it is by no means the accepted normal definition. In my opinion, this definition is designed to equivocate, to bestow upon social injustice all of the psychological baggage associated with the term "racist," while simultaneously ensuring that no non-white racists can be identified as what they truly are. If we ponder the ramifications of this alternative definition of racism, we can see that it is irrational: It labels the system (which is composed of individuals of multiple races) as working together to elevate only once race, yet it tries to assign the blame for that only to the white members. If it is truly possible for a society as a whole to be racist, the society as a whole is to blame.--Tibbets74 (talk) 09:12, 2 December 2008 (UTC)

Two, Black Power was never about an emulation of white or European constructions of power. Whereas the current structures of domination --which are of the tradition of European imperialism and (neo)colonialism--attempt to sustain relationships based on limited access to power, Black Power is an attempt to redefine power itself, such that people equal power.

This article and talk page is curious and misleading given the texts and activist/intellectuals who have been left out. It is impossible to take up a meaningful discussion of Black Power and not include Richard Wright, W. E. B. Du Bois, Angela Davis, Frantz Fanon, Ella Baker, Amiri Baraka and _the_ Black Panther Party to name only a few.

My name is Sky and I can be reached at

Even though the two terms "black power" and "white power" sound the same, they stand for different things. "White power" seems to be more about white domination, "black power" is more about black solidarity. Of course it gets more complicated than that, but I wouldn't treat the two as equal but opposite. In any case, more sources are needed. Elhim 13:54, 26 June 2007 (UTC)

But that is something I fail to understand. How is it that african americans can drive around in their cars with a bumper sticker that says "I'm black and proud of it" and then these people are looked upon as visionary and standing up for their right. But if I, being white but in no way a white supremicist (in fact these people who think they are better than others disgust me), place a bumper sticker on my car that says "I'm white and proud of it" every person I met would call me a racist. When in reality I've only changed one word. I believe that people who participate in either movement are racist in their very nature. The idea of racism is the belief that you are entitled to something because of your race which is what both groups advocate. Personally I am appalled that this article doesn't say anything about the groups inherent racist beliefs as does a similar article for white power. I, however, will not be the one to make these changes because I am sure if I do or if someone who doesn't agree with me simply reads this post then I will be called an avid racist for advocating fairness for similar statements.Whodoesntlovemonkeys (talk) 20:25, 17 May 2008 (UTC)
This has obviously been heavily discussed on this page so I'm not going to repeat arguments that a number of editors have made. The difference relates to the history of racism and specifically of white supremacy. There is not a 1 to 1 equation between black and white power because of the very different historical circumstances from which they spring. For more detailed thoughts on this, take a look at the thread below titled "NPOV."--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 22:42, 17 May 2008 (UTC)
That is IRRELEVENT he's talking about TODAY - not yesteryear, what .Whodoesntlovemonkeys says is absolutly CORRECT "The idea of racism is the belief that you are entitled to something because of your race", though I'd certain like to add "over somebody else" for a stricter idea. Black people are accepted to do something whites are not, THAT is racism, and having a chip on your shoulder about history is irrelevent. The fact that people support "Black Power" and keep claiming "White Authority" is the definitive proof of the current state of racism. Unfortunately because the racism is so ingrained it's un"reversable".... If people weren't racist, it would be; what a vicious circle. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Kurtle (talkcontribs) 00:22, 16 March 2010 (UTC)

POV section[edit]

Removed the following from the article: "Black Power has emerged as a racist call to arms amoungst Black Seperatists and Black Muslims. Although one can identify the historical origins and conditions which give rise to its implementation, it's current place in pop culture is to provide a collective identity to racist African Americans. Associated with violence and discrimination some have losely compared it to the African American version of White Neo-Nazi sepratism. In several instances, meetings have taken place between the late Tom Metzger (WAR White Aryan Resistance) and Louis Farrakhan (Nation Of Islam)about racial speratist solutions. Black Power continues to exist in academia and in the minds and hearts of racist African Americans. In a lesser sense, but still firmly rooted in the origins of the black power movement, soft forms of black racism have emerged and expanded as they easily pass the litmus test of extremism set by early black racists and seperatists involved in the black power movement. The unstoppable tide set in motion by this fringe movement can be seen in Hip Hop, black only television netowrks, black student unions and black only celebrations and festivals."

Loaded words, unsourced assertions, and entirely POV. If there's anything that can be salvaged from it, the original is here to work with, but as it stands, this is just not workable for an encyclopedia. Justin Eiler 23:50, 2 February 2006 (UTC)

I think you need to list which words are in fact "loaded." To banish an entire portion of an article because it doesn't meet your sensitivty does nothing but placate your agenda. I find your edit distractionary. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Distractionary is too big a word for me. --DanielCD 21:27, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
It may be possible to salvage some of the above - In the main it is inflammatory in the extreme, but there is something to be said for it's mention of the rise of black racism, such as "black only" organisations and the like.--Crais459 15:03, 6 April 2006 (UTC)

Racist point of view[edit]

Compared to its white counterpart black power, black pride, and black nationalism only present a sugarcoated point of view. They are completely lopsided giving one a completely negative connotation and the other a completely positive connotation. It is clear that all these words are defined in an American perspective but they are not American only. That being said, all the definitions need to be changed toward a fair and ACCURATE perspective. Anonymous User 22 July 2006

I would have to agree. Well Said! §

Racist should be part of first sentence. Along with violent. Reasons for these measures are by nature secondary to arcticle. Black Power identifies itself as black. It is self-segregating and exclusionary. Exceptions will be cited, but they oppose the major trend. Fighting oppression does not have to be race based. It's difficult to see perspective of black apologists on this issue, American Negro College fund is as clearly racist as Nation of Islam. Black power is often defined with violence also. Banding together based on race to obtain scarce resources in a competitive environment is detrimental to all others and clear racism. This is the philosophy of Rev. Wright and black liberation theology also. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:33, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

This article needs serious work[edit]

I did a little cleanup, but it's sadly lacking in information and seemingly intentionally skewed toward separatism, when black power has all kinds of ideological perspectives. And it's simply not very well written. I just skimmed Sky's comments, and I agree with him/her. This piece sux. deeceevoice 08:53, 6 September 2006 (UTC)

I agree!!! I mean whoever wrote it needs more information on more important issues. I also think Sky in on the right track. It is misleading information.Intelligence105 08:17, 17 April 2007 (UTC)

the black power movement does not oppress or attack other races it defends and has the interest of black people it up lifts the race , the reason orginizations like this exist is because the society failed to enlighted our people on our history and made us feel inferoir to white people where as white power attacks and oppresses every race that is not caucasain


Seems to me that the Deacons for Defense and Justice should be mentioned as a precedent. - Jmabel | Talk 02:02, 25 November 2006 (UTC)

Criticisms Section[edit]

I am a long time member of the 'far left' (The majority of my life now) and in this time I have seen far, far, far more people endorcing identity politics as a valid part of 'the struggle' (or whatever you wanna call it) with the Black Panthers, as well as more extreme Black Nationalists (including self proclaimed racist organisations such as the Nation of Islam) are supported, in the same way that anti-semitism is (rightfully) slammed in the west, but the majority of thje far left praises organisations such as Hamas, which have a self proclaimed anti-semitic agenda (read their core document). It's the same thing. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Gegen (talkcontribs) 23:32, 11 December 2006 (UTC).

Far left, eh? Don't second-guess yourself. Faradn

The criticisms section is really quite terrible. It is completely unsourced and is basically a lot of conjecture and posting of comments about Black Power one might hear on the street from a random passerby. There was and is a lot of criticism of Black Power, but it should not be difficult to provide actual sources. This section is bad enough that it might warrant removal.
Also, the criticisms section is simply too long in the context of an article that is woefully inadequate in addressing the Black Power phenomenon. The overall article should have much more detail. For example, it should certainly address international manifestations of Black Power instead of confining discussion solely to the U.S. Also an enormous number of Black Power groups in the U.S. are not discussed, and the whole "cultural" side to Black Power (things like Afros and dashikis in the popular imaginination) is completely ignored. In the future when I have more time I might try to work on broadening the scope of this article, and in the meantime hopefully the criticisms section can be edited down and/or sourced. Wikipedia needs to do the highly complex phenomenon known as Black Power much greater justice than this article currently does.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 21:02, 9 April 2007 (UTC)

There is a discontinuity in this section. Here is how the article currently is: "Bayard Rustin, an elder statesman of the Civil Rights Movement, was a harsh critic of Black Power in its earliest days. Writing in 1966, shortly after the March Against Fear, Randolph said that Black Power. . . ." It talks about Rustin's criticisms, but then mentions criticisms coming from Randolph (A. Philip?). Could this be corrected please? (emphasis added)Jsonitsac 02:56, 5 October 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for pointing that out, it was probably my mistake but I fixed it.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 11:16, 5 October 2007 (UTC)

I changed the link in the Criticisims section to one from an article written by Rustin published on PBS. I'm certain it is a far more neutral source than CJ 23:32, 7 October 2007 (UTC)

Thanks, I think that takes care of it.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 23:55, 7 October 2007 (UTC)


I added the neutral point of view banner because this article clearly needs some work on pov. White Power and Black Power are equally disgusting and need to be condemned—"Black Power" doesn't deserve a sugar coated version with a critisisms section, compare to White Power with nothing positive said about it. BMWman 03:27, 15 January 2007 (UTC)

This is ridiculous. There is a big difference between calling for the gaining of some power by an oppressed group and calling for the preservation of the power of the oppressor. - Jmabel | Talk 19:25, 9 March 2007 (UTC)
I wholeheartedly agree with the previous poster and think if anything this article is too POV against Black Power. Black Power and White Power are absolutely, positively not "equally disgusting" and are utterly different phenomena as anyone with a knowledge of the history of these movements would know. Certainly there are certain Black Power groups that are extremely racist, but at the heyday of Black Power (and the whole phenomenon is more important historically--not now) most African Americans who embraced the Black Power concept were not racist (I don't know of any White Power ideologues of whom one could say this). It should be remembered that when Stokely Carmichael shouted out "Black Power" at the Meredith March in 1966 the ink had barely dried on the Voting Rights Act. African Americans had been systematically prevented from achieving political or economic power, and this was in large part what the movement was about. It was also about reclaiming aspects of their African heritage that many blacks in the U.S. had grown ashamed of over the course of many generations of slavery and Jim Crow. Any sort of facile equation between Black Power and White Power (and one other key point of differentiation--for the most part these movements are at opposite ends of the political spectrum) is something we should avoid at this article of anywhere else on Wikipedia.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 21:15, 9 April 2007 (UTC)

The only difference is the initial situation. Black and white power groups approach the issue from different positions, but the aim is the same namely a position of racial power, racial separatism and radical nationalism instead of anti-racist racial equality. This is not the Civil Rights movement article, so stop treating it as such. 18:51, 16 April 2007 (UTC)

Sorry, but you're just wrong about that. There are much greater differences than the "initial situation." Just because "Black Power" and "White Power" sound similar does not mean they are. They are discrete phenomena. Are there "black power" groups that are black supremacist? Absolutely, and they should be discussed. Then there are other groups like the Black Panthers which, according to the wikipedia entry on that group, "condemned black nationalism as 'black racism'" (see the article intro) and worked with whites. My point is that "black power" groups were and are a diverse bunch, but many more than you might think were quite committed to racial equality. In order for equality to happen though, the status of African Americans needed to be elevated.
I have literally no idea what you mean by "This is not the Civil Rights movement article, so stop treating it as such," but increasingly historians view the sharp line between "civil rights" and "black power" as an artificial one. Many civil rights activists embraced the black power concept, and proto-black power organizations were around by the late 1950s and early 1960s (i.e. during the "Civil Rights Era"). The black power phenomenon is taken quite seriously by scholars and is very much viewed as one which is not even remotely equatable to white power. This article should reflect the latest scholarship, not the assumptions of some editors that white and black power are equally bad.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 19:07, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
Clearly Bigtime has a bias point of view when it comes to this item. You need to stop changing the article to make black power all rosey and nice. And yes, black power is equally as bad as white power when used in various ways. Get a grip on reality.
I don't have a bias at all on this matter, unless desire for accuracy is a bias. Have you ever read a book, or even an article, on the history of the Black Power movement? I think if you would you would see that "black power" and "black supremacy" are not the same thing. You keep editing the article to suggest that they are the same. The reason I revert you is because you are completely wrong about this. If you cannot immediately provide evidence for your argument that "Black power describes an ideology held by black supremacists" then I would ask you to cease from changing the article in that fashion. If you want to keep changing it, please provide some justification for your edit here. Thank you.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 06:24, 16 June 2007 (UTC)
Black power has been used numerous times throughout history to further black supremacy. In these cases, it’s a belief system that brings forward the idea that blacks should have power over others or more power than others. You are the one that is totally incorrect and should pick up a book that teaches real history instead of only reading about black power as it was used in ways you want to portray.
Well I'm glad you're willing to discuss it. You're right, black power has sometimes served black supremacist goals that wants to empower blacks over others. I agree with you. My only point is that this is not always the case. On a note I just left on your talk page I gave the example of the Black Panthers--clearly a black power group but one that worked with whites. Many manifestations of black power were cultural (music, dress, hairstyle, language, etc.) and had little or nothing to do with political power. Saying "all black power figures are racist" makes about as much sense as saying "all Republicans are racist." Some black power folks are/were racist, as are some Republicans (and some Democrats) and that should be pointed out, but changing it to "all" is just incorrect. That black supremacy sometimes stemmed from black power is pointed out at the end of the intro, thus your sentence is not necessary and quite inaccurate. Incidentally I've read hundreds of books about American history from all points of view--it's what I study. Again, have you ever read anything about Black Power? If not, where are you getting your information about it? I await your reply.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 06:48, 16 June 2007 (UTC)
The problem in my view is that there is no mention of racism or black supremacy in relation to black power throughout the entire article. In order to show a legitimate view of this item, it needs to be pointed out in the first paragraph that it is used in some cases as an ideology and slogan of black supremacists; this is an important part of the term. Even the final paragraph in the intro doesn’t show any harshness towards black power in that context. It falls far short of linking the two items together as they have been throughout history; it’s not just an offshoot, they have been interrelated. So if someone wants to reword my edit somewhat (such as making it not point to every case), they can, but don’t remove it and make the article sugarcoated.
And yes, I have read a fair amount about black power during my anti-terrorism research. Unfortunately, these courses have major focus on the negative aspects of black power and those who have used it in bad ways (NOI, Black Panther Party, etc.), which is why I feel this article is so off. When I read through it, all I saw was a sugar coated version of black power that doesn’t provide the harsh reality. I know it’s a tough subject for many, but this is reality and we can’t just write it out of history and encyclopedias.
What I would encourage you to do then, is add more sourced material on black supremacist versions of black power to the article itself. The end of the intro clearly states that black supremacy is an offshoot of black power, so I don't agree with you that the intro sugarcoats anything (I don't understand the distinction between "offshoot" and "interrelated"--clearly if one thing is an offshoot of another they are related). I don't think it's a matter of re-wording your edit, it's that your edit is unnecessary since we already mention black supremacy in the intro (and of course it does not "show harshness," wikipedia has to be NPOV but by mentioning black supremacy and providing a link to it readers can draw their own (harsh) conclusions.
Again, I agree there should be more about black supremacy in the body, but this article is incredibly, incredibly weak as a whole and there's a lot that needs to be added. It does not talk about Malcolm X, the Black Panthers, US Organization, Amiri Baraka (to name just a few) and it does not talk about Black Supremacist groups like the New Black Panthers (they are mentioned, but we should have more). This article needs a lot of work and you are only mentioning one thing that needs to be worked on. Go ahead and work on it--add more to the body. But your intro sentence simply does not work in my opinion. The sentence "the movement emphasized racial pride and the creation of black political and cultural institutions to nurture and promote black collective interests, advance black values, and secure black autonomy" is a much better general description (though even that could use some work). The phrase "It is also considered an ideology and political slogan describing the views of black supremacists" just does not belong in the second sentence of the intro and you have not provided any convincing evidence for why it should be there.
In the middle of writing this you added a paragraph about what you have read about Black Power. A good, general history published last year that I'd recommend is Peniel Joseph's Waiting 'Til the Midnight Hour. It's sympathetic to the movement, but fairly balanced. If you read about black power in the context of anti-terrorism studies, you're obviously going to get a certain point of view.
Also please sign your talk page posts, there's a button for a signature at the top of the edit box that makes two dashes (-) and four of these (~) appear at the end of your note and which leaves your signature.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 07:24, 16 June 2007 (UTC)

I've reverted the phrase "It is also considered an ideology and political slogan describing the views of black supremacists" for a third and final time for now (I won't violate WP:3RR, and regret that I had to revert this many times as is). As described above, I hope changes are made to the article itself, rather than the intro sentences, which describe the black supremacist aspects of black power movements. Black supremacy should not be emphasized at the outset--we have a whole article on that and Black Power is a broader phenomenon.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 09:32, 16 June 2007 (UTC)


Black People Are Awsome!!!

Yeah, I found this at the beginning of the background section. I'll remove this small tidbit of vandalism but there needs to be someone that shoud take better care of the article. 20:26, 19 March 2007 (UTC)Papa Mama

The term-s introduction into public discourse[edit]

I don't have time to enter it now, but it strikes me that an encyclopedia discussion of black power ought to have a fuller account of the terms introduction into public discourse. A good source for this is the book Local People by John Dittmer. Another good source, tho one with a POV that clearly disagrees with the later usages of the term is John Lewis' auto biography Walking With The Wind. Even tho Lewis was pushed out of SNCC by Black Power advocates, his discussion of the appeal, uses, and ambiguity of the term is very evenhanded. Both of these books trace the terms popularity to a speech given by Stokely Carmichael (later Kwame Ture) in Greenwood Mississippi after his arrest. As here, both also credit Willie Ricks with bringing the term into SNCC, but it's obvious that the media use of the term came from Carmichael/Ture's widely reported remarks. Anyway, one way to get around the POV issues that seem to plague this article might be to more fully account for its origin and how its (sometimes contradictory) meanings and applications have come into being. 02:31, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

Good stuff, should be added. If anyone has those books, please do add this, with appropriately specific citations. - Jmabel | Talk 18:22, 8 April 2007 (UTC)
Unfortunately I'm too busy in the next month or two to do any serious work on this article (I would want to do it thoroughly and it would take me a long time), but I have a large number of sources (Dittmer's book but others as well which are even more focused on Black Power--Peniel Joseph's recently released Waiting 'Til the Midnight Hour (2006) will probably be the standard overview for a few years to come if anyone wants to check it out) and will hopefully work on adding a great deal on the history of Black Power in the future. Let me also suggest some groups and individuals which are not discussed in the article but which absolutely should be: United Slaves (better known as the US organization), Ron Karenga, the Black Arts Movement, Amiri Baraka, the Black Panther Party, Reverend Albert Cleage, and Malcolm X (whose name inexplicably does not even appear in the article, though he was perhaps the single most influential figure among Black Power activists). There should also be much more elaboration on proto-Black Power figures and groups like Robert F. Williams and the Deacons for Defense. As I said I'll try to work on this in the near future but hopefully others can start including some additional information along these lines.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 21:30, 9 April 2007 (UTC)

Clean- up[edit]

nada was here lmaooo NPOV issues here, White power and Black power are the same for the simple reason that there's places in the world where blacks and Whites are in the same, or similar situations. Zimbabwe? A bit of White Power would go a long way there, if blacks are being oppressed they should fight against it, if Whites are then they should too, so in principle it's the same ethos (to strike against wrongs commited against their people. 10:17, 15 May 2007 (UTC)

There aren't many places in the world like that, and I doubt "White Power" would have much positive effect in Zimbabwe (whites ran the place up until 1980 and things were not so great then either. Mugabe's terribleness doesn't necessarily have anything to do with "Black Power"--he's just terrible in general). The "ethos" of white power and black power are usually not the same. White Power groups generally want to restore a system of white dominance, whereas most Black Power groups (particularly in the 1960s and 1970s) simply wanted blacks to have more economic and political power or, as some groups argued, to be completely separate from whites because white racism seemed so intractable at that time. Some Black Power groups were (or are) black supremacist, but many were not.
This article does need a lot of work, but changing it to say that "White power and Black power are the same" would be a terrible idea because this is simply incorrect. The issue has already been commented upon at length on this page.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 10:41, 15 May 2007 (UTC)

Well maybe White power organisations just want a little more 'economic security' for their people and as for seperation, sounds good to me, so let me get this straight, it's fine for blacks to have seperation of the races on their terms but oh no if White people do it, SHOCK, HORROR it's the evil Apartheid, boo hoo. 20:22, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Many black power groups did not want separation of the races--that's why the phenomenon is complicated. And, yes, hard as it may be for you to believe, there is a huge difference between black separatism and white separatism. You might want to review the Brown v. Board of Education decision of 1954 which argued that "separate but equal" was extremely problematic because in a society dominated by whites, whites-only facilities would always be superior to blacks-only facilities (I would also recommend reading the article on apartheid or specific events like the Sharpeville massacre--it's not good to be so flip about using the apartheid term).
It's the power differential between whites and blacks which distinguishes black separatism and white separatism (and black power and white power) and this is part of why the Black Power movement was devoted to empowering African Americans in a variety of ways. I hope you change your attitude about separation of the races at some point. These days most whites (and African-Americans) feel we should all be part of the same society.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 20:48, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
Agreed, the article should reflect the historical motivations and varying viewpoints regarding the Black power movement. Not just a single modern perspective.CJ 01:28, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

For the umpteenth time, black supremacy does not need to be mentioned that early in the lead. It is mentioned, with appropriate weight in the last sentence of the lead. CJ 14:45, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

"Big Five civil rights organizations" reference[edit]

This article contains a reference to the "Big Five civil rights organizations." There's a link to Big Five in the text, but that's just a disambiguation page. Would someone please explain which ones the Big Five are and improve the link (and perhaps create an article on them)? Bry9000 (talk) 19:23, 15 February 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for pointing that out. The reference is to the "Big Five" organizations that led the Civil Rights Movement: the NAACP, the Urban League, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the Congress on Racial Equality, and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. Originally on the Big Five disambiguation page these groups were mentioned, but an editor (probably rightfully so) drastically cut that page down. I'll try to fix this with a footnote listing out the groups.--Bigtimepeace | talk | contribs 19:32, 15 February 2008 (UTC)


How come the white power page has the word racist in the first sentence, whereas this article barely mentions it into the third or fourth paragraph, and then it still relates to white people being racist! Black people can be racist too, remember the Jena 6? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:34, 22 February 2008 (UTC)

Let's not confuse Black Power and White Power people. Black Power is mostly rhetoric to inspire people to overcome oppression. White Power has been known to partake in acts that kill people. HUGE difference. The Black Panthers were NOT a terrorist organization killing innocent people; the KKK, however, was. There lies the difference.Egoode2 (talk) 04:47, 22 May 2008 (UTC)

"Black Power" is racist. Black Power is a black nationalist political slogan, and a name for the associated ideology. Much like the "White Power" propagandists.
Anyways ... the Black Panthers "from the beginning [...] Party's focus on militancy came with a reputation for violence." "Black Liberation Army had previously existed as an underground paramilitary wing of the Party". It's mainly two sides of the same coin. J. D. Redding 15:58, 21 August 2008 (UTC)

agreed. Egoode2.

also the jena 6 isn't an example of blacks acting in a "racist" way. tycho garen (talk) 15:39, 21 August 2008 (UTC)

Jena Six is the name given to a group of six black teenagers who have been charged with the beating of Justin Barker, a white student ... someone hit Barker from behind, knocking him out, and then others began to kick and stomp him. ... premeditated ambush and attack by six students against one ... attacked was beaten and kicked into a state of bloody unconsciousness. You make up your own mind, J. D. Redding 16:13, 21 August 2008 (UTC)

Black power is used as rethoric as regimes such as zimbabwe for genocide and deportation , it's only defence is that ludicrious thought that it is not politically current for racism to be an abstract notion(Certain groups I don't want to mention are always "Racist" and others are always the victim , doesn't matter if they are in the middle of a genocide) in a nutshell the article has severe problems it's going to take more effort to fix it than just writing the additional infornmation , but keeping it as well. (talk) 12:21, 16 March 2010 (UTC)

wait what?[edit]

So its ok to be proud of Being African but not ok to be proud to be European? There are just as many rascist black people as there are white rascists. Im from Miami and I have very light skinned Ive been called whitey,nazi,white meat for years so dont assume that there are no black rascists. And the white pride being linked to the kkk and stuff like that well that is true sometimes white pride is jumbled into that stuff. HOWEVER The black panthers do the exact same thing--Lord Haw Haw29 (talk) 00:42, 29 July 2008 (UTC)

Pure bullshit, this page has an NPOV and seems to be edited by mostly white apolegetics and blacks trying to push a POV, black power and white power are BOTH racist terms, and the disparities in this page indicate extreme hypocrisy. Re-adding the tag. (talk) 05:26, 5 September 2008 (UTC)

Let me put it this way. Black power is about taking a stand against the white supremacy in the same way that many white Americans reacted to the very peaceful protests of the Civil Rights movement of the 1960's. DO NOT try to pull this out of context, the African Americans tried for years to peacefully demand rights,the Mongomery bus boycott, the March on Washington, sit-ins, tryng to go to college! And do you know how these protests were met? With firefighting hoses, able to pull the bark off trees and bricks from buildings 100 feet away, aimed at black children. Lynchings, shootings, beatings. Slow to no movement in federal enforcement. So it is okay for what the White Supremists did, but not for the Blacks to fight back? Black Power wasn't about gaining the upperhand, it was a youth culture movement about being able to stand up, and to have the power to stay standing strong. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:11, 22 January 2009 (UTC)

By that reasoning, every Jew and Polish citizen should have the right to murder Germans ... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:27, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

Black is beautiful/ugly[edit]

I just changed this sentence: "Black is beautiful is a cultural movement in the United States of America beginning in the 1960s that aims to dispel the widespread notion that black people's natural features such as skin color, facial features and hair are inherently ugly." I removed the word "widespread", rendering it "...that aims to dispel the notion that black people's natural features..."

To be clear, I'm not saying that the implied claim is false. But I believe its wording is awkward and should be avoided. It's put much better later on in the same paragraph: "The prevailing idea in American culture was that black features were less attractive or desirable than white features." --MQDuck 00:47, 21 February 2009 (UTC)

"African American people throughout the world"[edit]

In the lede: "African American people throughout the world, primarily those in the United States". What on earth is this supposed to mean? The only "African American people" outside the United States are the handful of emigrants. Shouldn't this be "People of black African descent throughout the world, primarily those in the United States"? - Jmabel | Talk 18:53, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Two days, no one's weighed in, I'm making the change. - Jmabel | Talk 01:50, 15 July 2009 (UTC)


With reference to Bobby Seale: "He realized, rightly so". Even "He realized" is POV (since you can't "realize" something that isn't true). "Rightly so" is an endorsement in the narrative voice. Now, I happen to agree with Seale on this, but it isn't Wikipedia style. We should find a different way to word this. - Jmabel | Talk 19:11, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Two days, no one's weighed in, I'm making the change. - Jmabel | Talk 01:50, 15 July 2009 (UTC)


We have separate sections for "Black is Beautiful" and the "Black Arts Movement", but we also discuss both in the sections "Impact on African American Identity" and "Impact on Arts and Culture". We should go one way or the other. I think the right way is to place the "Black is Beautiful" section within "Impact on African American Identity" and the "Black Arts Movement" within "Impact on Arts and Culture", then reorganize the material accordingly. Does anyone disagree?

Also, (1) the lede is overlong and (2) the Bayard Rustin material can probably be better integrated (sorry) into the article than in a separate "criticism" section. - Jmabel | Talk 19:41, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Two days, no one's weighed in, I'll try to address this. - Jmabel | Talk 01:59, 15 July 2009 (UTC)

Remaining POV issues?[edit]

This has had a POV tag for 10 months. Would someone please make a list of what they believe are the issues so that we can work toward consensus? If no one does this in the next 2 weeks or so, I will simply remove the tag, since it related to a considerably different state of the article. - Jmabel | Talk 01:58, 15 July 2009 (UTC) if you will remove the tag you are violating wp:soap , the rethoric is used today as a justification for violence by groups or by governments around the world , that is for starters. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:23, 16 March 2010 (UTC)

Lacking criticism[edit]

Where is the criticism of "black power" as is so prevalent with the "white power" article. Seperate but equal articles I say! —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:43, 28 May 2010 (UTC)

Agreed. There seems to be double standards on wikipedia regarding white power and [insert non white race] power. I call the big one bitey (talk) 08:57, 13 June 2014 (UTC)

Why is this small article POV?[edit]

Eh, I don't get it. It seems really bland, in fact. I see a lot of weird posts in the talk page, though.-- (talk) 15:39, 11 June 2012 (UTC)

removing POV tag with no active discussion per Template:POV[edit]

I've removed an old neutrality tag from this page that appears to have no active discussion per the instructions at Template:POV:

This template is not meant to be a permanent resident on any article. Remove this template whenever:
  1. There is consensus on the talkpage or the NPOV Noticeboard that the issue has been resolved
  2. It is not clear what the neutrality issue is, and no satisfactory explanation has been given
  3. In the absence of any discussion, or if the discussion has become dormant.

Since there's no evidence of ongoing discussion, I'm removing the tag for now. If discussion is continuing and I've failed to see it, however, please feel free to restore the template and continue to address the issues. Thanks to everybody working on this one! -- Khazar2 (talk) 00:40, 21 June 2013 (UTC)