The 1960's ushered in a period of massive activism, both political and social. Many single interest groups rose to the forefront of American media and became household names. These groups made great changes in American thought and society, some even made changes around the world. Of the latter, the Black Panther Party is one of the most intriguing. The Black Panther Party rose to prominence almost immediately after its formation, and within a few years spread around the globe.
Huey P. Newton, along with Bobby Seale, co-founded the party in October 1966. Similarity of background brought about a large degree of cohesiveness in the party, and originally brought Newton and Seale together. Huey P. Newton, born in 1942 in Louisiana, moved with his family to California in 1945. He grew up in the ghettoes and lived a life similar to the other black youths in ghettoes around the country. Rarely was he given a chance to do skilled labor. By the time he attended Merritt College, he had a reputation as a "tuff" guy. According to Marine, One thing that distinguished Newton from other "tuffs", though, was "his ability to articulate ideas, organize, and get things done."
Bobby Seale also grew up in poverty. As a young man he joined the Air Force, where he received important arms and tactical training. Seale was later court-martialed and found himself unable to hold a job. This background created a hostility and aggressiveness that helped to shape his ideals and character. It was later while attending Merritt College that Seale met Newton.
While attending Merritt College, Newton and Seale studied the great revolutionaries such as Marx, Fanon, Lenin, and Malcolm X. It was here that they formed the political and soci...
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...the ghettoes a voice and hope, and the support and admiration of people around the globe.
Newton, Huey p. To Die for the People, (New York: Random House, 1972)
Seale, Bobby. Seize the Time: the Story of the Black Panther party and Huey P. Newton, (New York: Random House, 1970)
Calloway, Carolyn, "Group Cohesiveness in the Black Panther Party" Journal of Black Studies vol.18 no. 1 (1977) 55- 74
Jones, Charles, "The Political Repression of the Black Panther Party 1966- 1971 The Case of the Oakland Bay Area" Journal of Black Studies, vol. 18 no. 4 (1988) 415- 434
Marine, G., The Black Panthers (New York: New American Library, 1969)
Sandarg, Robert, "Jean Genet and the Black Panther Party" Journal of Black Studies, vol. 16 no. 3 (1986) 269- 282
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