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Mapping Gender in African-American Political Strategies

Kathleen Cleaver, Black Panther Party Headquarters 1969

Kathleen Cleaver, Black Panther Party Headquarters, Oakland, CA, Sept. 17, 1969. Credit: The Berkeley Revolution: A digital archive of one city's transformation in the late-1960s & 1970s.The Berkeley Revolution: A digital archive of one city's transformation in the late-1960s & 1970s.

Leith Mullings is Distinguished Professor Emerita of Anthropology at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York and served as president of the American Anthropological Association from 2011 to 2013. She is a founding member of the Black Radical Congress.

This piece is excerpted and adapted, with permission, from Leith Mullings, “Mapping Gender in African-American Political Strategies,” in The Socialist Feminist Project: A Contemporary Reader in Theory and Politics, ed. Nancy Holmstrom (New York: Monthly Review Press, 2002).

Gender is not just about women; it is about the social relationship between men and women and the dialectical, reciprocal, and cultural construction of femininity and masculinity.

Recognition of a unique historical experience concerning gender informs the perspectives of African Americans of various political persuasions. This history incorporates a land of origin with certain common principles about gender and family.1 It also encompasses the African-American experience in the United States where the denial of many “protections” offered by gender roles and indeed sometimes inversion of such roles was a means of maintaining control.2 Hence, asserting the right to assume gender-based roles of husband, father, wife, and mother paradoxically was an act of resistance. The manner in which African-American people have envisioned relationships of gender in light of that history has expressed itself in markedly different forms.

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“I Am a Man”

For those who believe that African-American empowerment is best achieved through integration into U.S. society, the vision of ideal gender roles is generally developed against the backdrop of the dominant Euro-American model, and the struggle for inclusion in Euro-American civil society includes the “privileges” of gender. Freedom is frequently identified with masculinity. Consequently, the right to be treated like a “man” was a recurrent theme in the civil rights movement. Slogans (“I am a man”) and songs (“How many roads must a man walk down before you call him a man?”) metaphorically equated manhood with equality.3 While these examples in part reflect the semantics of generic usage, the thrust of the inclusionist current has been to seek gender privileges within the dominant paradigm: to claim for African-American men the privileges of manhood and to seek for African-American women the protections of patriarchy denied to them by the dominant culture.4

Historically, African-American women, like other working women, have used appeals to the traditional gender role model to demand family wages for men.5 During the period of sharecropping or debt peonage, working women used the language of traditional gender roles to exert some control over their labor, emphasizing their roles as homemakers rather than as workers.6 Similarly for middle-stratum African-American women, “gender-defined work and domestic responsibilities were symbolic of their new status,” and women in organizations such as the National Association of Colored Women strongly encouraged conformity to Euro-American models of womanhood.7

In the church, despite Audrey Lawson Brown’s contention that Afro-Baptists, for example, perpetuate African cultural values of complementarity rather than the androcentric bias of the Pauline scriptures, Christianity has helped shape the representation of women primarily as mothers and helpmeets to men. Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. once wrote, “The primary obligation of the woman is motherhood.”8

In keeping with the view that African Americans are Americans who happen to be black, the inclusionist strategy seeks for Americans of African descent the rights, obligations, and roles of Euro-American society as they are defined by gender. For many, this is mediated by recognition of the special history of African-American women. Furthermore, as traditional Euro-American gender roles are themselves challenged by the civil rights and women’s movements, there is often a tendency to favor the extension of democratic rights to women, but generally within the parameters of the economic, political, and legal system of capitalism. However, the implicit acceptance of the foundations of capitalism inevitably reproduces patriarchal relationships.

Reproduction and the Family

As people seek to reproduce themselves, they often do so within a context of stratified reproduction, where some populations are empowered to reproduce and others are not.9 For African Americans, issues of reproduction have not been relegated to the private sphere, but have often been part of the public arena.10 Pressures to encourage or limit reproduction have varied with the historical moment: for example, during slavery African-American women were often forcibly encouraged to reproduce the labor force, but in the contemporary period of deindustrialization and rising unemployment their reproductive capacity has become a matter for national attention.11 For many African Americans, regardless of their political orientation, issues about continuity and genocide have been real concerns.

Reproduction takes place within a complex set of social arrangements, and African Americans of most political persuasions would probably agree that the family has been a buffer from slavery and racism and that the struggle for family is part and parcel of the liberation struggle. But as Rayna Rapp reminds us, people mean different things by family.

It is not surprising that questions of reproductive choice are strongly debated. The disagreements we find in the general population are reflected in microcosm in those who favor the strategy of integration. For example, there is a national organization of African Americans opposed to abortion, and African-American clergymen have often been conservative on this issue. African-American politicians, however, have generally supported reproductive rights.

While many inclusionists favor reproductive rights, often attending to the theoretical and tactical relationship between civil rights and women’s rights, this concession does not necessarily extend to rethinking the premises of the patriarchal family. Though recognizing the variety of family forms and the strains on such families, inclusionists have generally supported the patriarchal nuclear family as ideal. They are frequently uncritical of the right-wing call for “family values,” implicit in which is the notion that the decline of the “traditional” nuclear family is at the heart of increasing poverty among African Americans.

Uncritical acceptance of the dominant society’s model of gender and the family is perhaps most clearly evident in the work of sociologist William Julius Wilson. While Wilson’s analysis of conditions that produce increasing rates of households headed by women is very useful, he does not problematize the normative gender roles underlying his analysis. Documenting the relationship between the rising numbers of households headed by women and skyrocketing male unemployment among African Americans, his policy proposals are directed toward increasing the number of marriageable black males by giving priority to employment and education opportunities for African-American men. While few would deny the importance of addressing male joblessness, Wilson’s proposals accept and reinforce the traditional model of gender roles as an effective solution to the social problems facing African-American households.12

Given the centrality of reproduction in the nationalist project, it is not surprising that, historically, nationalists have not been supportive of a woman’s right to choose. For example, Marcus Garvey’s Universal Negro Improvement Association issued a resolution in 1934 condemning the use of birth control for African Americans.13 The pronouncement of Louis Farrakhan, national leader of the Nation of Islam, that “when the black woman kills her unborn child she is murdering the advancement of her nation” is a logical consequence of Elijah Muhammad’s view that “the woman is man’s field to reproduce his nation.”14

Reproductive functions are ideally organized in the context of the patriarchal, perhaps polygynous, family. For nationalist groups that practice polygyny, it may be seen as both a return to African traditions and a response to the scarcity of African-American men. Black poet and cultural critic Haki Madhubuti, for example, calls for “the quality of sharing” in the wake of shortage of black men. His extension of this “choice” to women as well is perhaps somewhat disingenuous, given that the actual constraints of demography would ensure that the “sharing” is done almost exclusively by women. Despite what appears to be balance in his discussion, women are nonetheless viewed as markers of ethnic boundaries and the property of the African-American community: black women forming families with white men (in the absence of available black men) results in “a very serious consequence in terms of black genocide.”15

A woman’s right over her own body need not always be juxtaposed to racial genocide. At the same time that Marcus Garvey condemned African-American women’s right to use birth control, W. E. B. Du Bois strongly endorsed Planned Parenthood and invited Margaret Sanger to contribute articles on birth control to Crisis. Similarly, Manning Marable presents a very nuanced view of reproductive rights, noting that in light of African-American history, the fear of genocide is not unreasonable. Nonetheless, he insists on women’s right to choose in the context of freedom and responsibility. Reverend Jesse Jackson has also supported reproductive rights, appearing at rallies and marches in support of choice in reproductive matters.

For those who seek to undermine patriarchal relations, the traditional family may be an arena in which these relationships are produced and reproduced. Contemporary family organization and function are seen not as “natural” or given, but as historically determined. As Johnetta Cole suggests: “The nature and state of ‘the American family’ cannot be understood without a recognition of the diversity of the groupings which bear the label ‘family’ and the varied, complex, and often contradictory place of women within them.”16

In this view, public policy need not be based on reproducing the “traditional” patriarchal family.

Women’s Role in the Liberation Project

African Americans across the political spectrum would agree that three themes have been characteristic of the liberation project historically. First, for most women as well as men, the struggle for African-American liberation took priority over struggles around gender. Furthermore, most recognize the unprecedented role played by women in the liberation project and simultaneously the denial of traditional Euro-American masculine roles to African-American men. Though African Americans have different takes on how this history should inform contemporary relationships, in most inclusionist and autonomist organizations this experience, as well as the dominant ideology, has become part of the rationale for limiting the participation of women.17

In the African-American church, for example, though women often constitute the bulk of the congregations, the ministry is a vehicle of social mobility for men. In the mainstream denominations, biblical ideology promotes the subordination of women, who are not proportionally represented in leadership. A survey of the clergy of 2,150 African-American “mainline” congregations in 1990 revealed that only 66, or 3.7 percent, were women.18 Even among the Afro-Baptists, where women are most active, women pastors, preachers, and evangelists are rare. Indeed, Brown suggests that “with the active complicity of women, men monopolize corporate leadership in the home and church.”19

Similarly, if we examine the involvement of women in inclusionist political organizations, women have played more significant roles than in comparable Euro-American organizations and have generally unhesitatingly supported men and struggle for the greater good of African Americans.20 But though they often constituted the shock troops in voter registration, boycotts, and civil disobedience and played major roles in initiating the militant actions around the Montgomery bus boycott, women rarely held leadership positions in traditional civil rights organizations such as the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), the Congress of Racial Equality, and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC).21 For example, the two women who served on the executive staff of the SCLC both complained of the ways in which male chauvinism limited their leadership.22 Though women were represented in leadership and decision-making in SNCC, Stokely Carmichael’s infamous (and, it is to be hoped, joking) 1964 rebuttal to a position paper criticizing SNCC’s treatment of women—”The only position for women in SNCC is prone”—did little to advance the issue of gender equality.23

The traditional civil rights organizations have not made much progress in this area. For example, in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in 1994, ten of the twelve top executive positions were held by men, despite the fact that approximately two-thirds of the membership were female. Similarly, in 1994 the SCLC and the Urban League were both led by men.

In many autonomist projects, women’s roles are circumscribed. In the 1970s, Amiri Baraka, for example, insisted that women should not be involved in men’s discussions. (He has since changed his position.) The Republic of New Afrika called for a return to a male patriarchal system where men made decisions.24 Angela Davis described her encounters with Maulana Karenga’s organization US while organizing for a rally in San Diego in 1967: “I was criticized very heavily, especially by male members of Karenga’s organization, for doing a man’s job. Women should not play a leadership role, they insisted. A woman was supposed to ‘inspire’ her man and educate his children. The irony of their complaint was that much of what I was doing had fallen to me by default.”25

Today, with some notable exceptions—such as Shahrazad Ali’s suggestion that women who defy men’s leadership should be offered “a sound open-handed slap in the mouth”—the public representation of women’s roles in the liberation struggle is usually phrased in terms of complementarity and protection, as participants seek to reclaim leadership roles for men that existed in an ancestral society.26

One of the most significant expressions of public activism around representations of gender in contemporary African-American politics was the Million Man March. On October 16, 1995, perhaps as many as a million African Americans went to Washington, D.C., for a day of racial unity and “atonement.”27

The process of organization leading up to the march embodied the twin themes of production and control of women, and demonstrated points of unity in the nationalist and inclusionist perspectives on gender. The overwhelmingly male march was called by Minister Farrakhan after holding mass meetings of African-American men in major cities across the United States at which women were often turned away at the door. Reverend Benjamin Chavis, after being stripped of his position as national secretary of the NAACP ostensibly for using organizational funds for the settlement of a sexual harassment lawsuit, became national director of the march.

The Nation of Islam requested that the march be confined to men only; women were to stay at home, watch the children, and pray. According to Farrakhan: “We are asking the Black woman, particularly our mothers, to be with our children, teaching them the value of home, self-esteem, family and unity; and to work with us to ensure the success of the March and our mission to improve the quality of life for our people. We take this historical moment to recognize the major contributions that the Black woman has made and continues to make, toward the advancement of our people.”28

When asked about the participation of women in the African National Congress and the Mozambique Liberation Front, Conrad Muhammad, leader of the Nation of Islam’s Harlem temple, explained: “The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam genuinely believe it’s a sad man that sends his women into battle before himself…we believe as men it is our duty to go out on the front line.”29

While the public discourse of the march leaders emphasized the protection of women, others seemed more concerned with control. A. Asadullah Samad, in a column in the Los Angeles Sentinel, defended the male-only composition of the march: “Sisters gotta stay home on this one. I know you ain’t used to anybody telling you what you can do or where you can go. That might be part of the problem.… Until the black man regains the respect (and control) of his women, he will never regain the respect of the larger society.”30

The march was supported by a wide spectrum of the African-American community. Many African-American women, including elected officials, officials of civil rights organizations, and members of sororities, enthusiastically supported the male-only march. This is not surprising given the historical burden of work and family carried by African-American women throughout their history. To many women, the call for men to take responsibility was a welcome one.

Progressives argued that while there is no inherent contradiction in single-gender movements, the march perpetuated divisions based on gender. As criticism grew, the march leaders modified their stance and the widows of Martin Luther King Jr., Medgar Evers, and Malcolm X were asked to “represent” women in the march. Rosa Parks, catalyst of the Montgomery bus boycott, poet Maya Angelou, and a few other women were added to the speakers’ platform. Nevertheless, the underlying paradigm of the march, based on the patriarchal worldview of the Nation of Islam, was not significantly transformed.

In a national context of mounting racism, the call for a march struck a chord among the majority of African Americans. The march was a massive demonstration against the demonization of African-American men and was successful in promoting and renewing feelings of solidarity, unity, and purpose among those who participated. It is nevertheless true that the organizers conceived of the Million Man March in terms of a patriarchal vision—a collective statement of manhood and self-assertion on the part of African-American men, with women deliberately relegated to arenas outside political and social confrontation. This framework is compatible with the patriarchy of both the inclusionist and the autonomist perspectives. Hugh Price, the president of the National Urban League, referred to the Million Man March as “the largest family-values rally in the history of the United States.”31

Those organizations seeking radically to alter the structure of hierarchical relationships have not been immune from the influence of the “Moynihan thesis”—that the activist roles played by African-American women have emasculated African-American men. The Black Panther Party, for example, presents a complex case. Though the party was certainly characterized by serious problems of misogyny and sexism, women were integrated into the party leadership, and party members were influenced by leftist liberation movements that projected progressive views about the participation of women. For example, a Black Panther woman leader stated: “We feel that the example given to us by the Vietnamese women is a prime example of the role women can play in the revolution.”32 At the founding of the party, one of the “Eight Points of Attention” was “Do not take liberties with women.”

In the more traditional leftist movements, certainly ideology (if not always practice) supported the participation of women in political projects. Though practice was often inconsistent, leftist organizations with significant African-American membership, such as the Communist Party, could boast of an array of African-American women leaders, including Claudia Jones, Charlene Mitchell, and Angela Davis. Though the Marxist paradigm presented some limitations for the analysis of gender and gender oppression, these organizations differ significantly from the others discussed here in placing women in leadership positions as well as in giving ideological support to the deconstruction of patriarchy.

What preliminary conclusions can we draw from this? One aspect of inequality has been the dominant class’ attempt to deny the humanity of Africans and African Americans by refusing them the attributes of gender. Within each political tradition, African Americans have challenged this by imagining and constructing gender relationships in distinct ways.

Literally coming from different places, those seeking inclusion and autonomy appear to construct very different models of gender relationships. Inclusionists seek equal opportunity and access to the gender privileges of the dominant Euro-American society, and many would support an expansion of women’s rights within the confines of the existing legal system. Autonomists, in contrast, reject the Eurocentric framework and seek to establish or reestablish gender relationships based on an ancestral tradition. Phrased in the language of complementarity (which easily shades into inequality), the division of labor, in which women’s primary sphere is the domestic arena, is not a result of mutual agreement but rather is assumed to be a natural consequence of women’s reproductive capacities. By reifying the cultural alternative, the material conditions of African-American women’s experiences and struggles as workers are often obscured.

Dissimilar as they seem, there are underlying continuities between the inclusionist and autonomist perspectives. The final product of both strategic visions is a patriarchal model of gender roles in which masculinity is defined by the dependence of women. Within both currents, gender, like race, appears to be essentialized and fixed rather than historically and socially constructed. Though each attempts to grant women the protection and respect that was not forthcoming in the dominant society, this form of resistance accommodates and reproduces gender inequality. Thus the patriarchal theme put forward by the organizers of the Million Man March, for example, contradicted neither the Eurocentric patriarchy of the inclusionists nor the traditional model of patriarchy subscribed to by many nationalists, including the Nation of Islam.

While the nationalists pose an alternative model of gender roles, those within the transformationist perspective pose an oppositional model.33 However unsuccessful they may be in implementing it, they seek to deconstruct a definition of masculinity defined by the dependence of women. In this sense, gender, like race, is seen as a social construction, based on historically unequal social relationships.

Where Are We Going? A Personal Postscript

What are the implications of this exploration and where do we go from here? Historically, African Americans, as individuals and as a people, have moved between various political visions and strategies. What are the conditions that produce the dominance of one or the other strategy, and what are the consequences for gender?

The 1960s and ’70s saw the rise of the civil rights movement, which employed various forms of civil disobedience to force changes in the state structure. This was a heroic—indeed in some instances revolutionary—movement, including streams of transformationist, inclusionist, and nationalist strategies. Its successes in democratizing access to and opportunity in housing, education, health care, immigration, and employment redounded to the benefit of all Americans. African-American women were major participants in the struggle, if not in the leadership, and heroines such as Fannie Lou Hamer and Rosa Parks were pivotal to the movement.

With the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the struggle took an inclusionist direction, emphasizing change through legal channels and electoral strategies. In many of the civil rights and black power organizations, capitulation to the representation of “emasculating” African-American women led to increased identification of the struggle for equality with masculine privilege.

The 1970s brought with a vengeance the consequences of growing inequality, deindustrialization, and cutbacks in government services. As income inequality has increased, the middle class has expanded, but so has the number of people living below the poverty line, particularly poor women heading households. In addition, these conditions have given birth to a population of urban youth who have never seen successful struggle for change and have few job prospects in an economy where black youth unemployment is as high as 50 percent in some cities.

In light of contemporary conditions, the inclusionist view has proven unrealizable. An inherently unequal system cannot be expanded to produce opportunities for everyone, including African Americans. In an international context characterized by serious (if temporary) reversals for the left, the return of ethnic fundamentalism and racial essentialist explanations of social reality, and the consolidation of international capitalism, those individuals and organizations calling for transformationist strategies have been for the moment weakened.

In this void, there is a rising popularity of nationalist approaches, with the call for turning inward. Tempting as it may seem to shake the sand off our feet and turn our backs on Sodom and Gomorrah, this strategy is unlikely to succeed. The problems of the skin strategy are evident on the local level in the rise of a small but actively promoted group of conservative African Americans such as economist Thomas Sowell, Clarence Thomas, and Republican politician Alan Keyes, who cannot be trusted to promote the interests of African-American liberation. On the international level, the consolidation of globalized capitalism, with new forces of technology, renders narrow national struggles obsolete.

Furthermore, inherent in the nationalist project, in its essentialization of race and its prioritization of the black social order, is the necessity to “control” women, who reproduce the social order and mark its boundaries. Our historical struggle has clearly demonstrated that the pursuit of African-American liberation is inextricably connected to realizing the full potential of African-American women. The struggle against class exploitation, racial discrimination, and gender subordination must be integrated in theory and practice in order for any one element to be realized. As a people, we cannot afford to exclude women from full and equal participation in our struggle. Or, as an African brother said to me, paraphrasing a Ghanaian proverb: “We need all hands on deck.”

Notes

  1. Leith Mullings, “Anthropological Perspectives on the African American Family,” chap. 4 in On Our Own Terms: Race, Class, and Gender in the Lives of African American Women (New York: Routledge, 1997).
  2. Leith Mullings, “Images, Ideology, and Women of Color,” chap. 6 in On Our Own Terms.
  3. This caption of a poster publicizing the struggle of Memphis sanitation workers became a rallying cry for the civil rights movement.
  4. “The central strategic objective of the inclusionists is integration of African Americans into Euro-American civil society and the expansion of equal opportunities for minorities within the existing capitalist system.” Leith Mullings, “Mapping Gender in African-American Political Strategies,” in The Socialist Feminist Project: A Contemporary Reader in Theory and Politics, ed. Nancy Holmstrom (New York: Monthly Review Press, 2002), 315.
  5. See Barbara Laslett and Johanna Brenner, “Gender and Social Reproduction: Historical Perspectives,” Annual Review of Sociology 15 (1989): 381–404.
  6. Herbert G. Gutman, The Black Family in Slavery and Freedom, 1750–1925 (New York: Pantheon, 1976), 167.
  7. Sharon Harley, “Northern Black Female Workers: ‘Jacksonian Era,'” in The Afro-American Woman: Struggles and Images, ed. Harley and Rosalyn Terborg-Penn (Port Washington, NY: National Universities, 1978), 170; Evelyn Higginbotham, “African American Women’s History and the Metalanguage of Race,” Signs: Journal of Women in Society and Culture 17, no. 2 (1992): 271.
  8. Martin Luther King Jr. quoted in Adam Fairclough, To Redeem the Soul of America: The Southern Christian Leadership Conference and Martin Luther King, Jr. (Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 1987), 50.
  9. Faye Ginsburg and Rayna Rapp, “Introduction: Conceiving the New World Order,” in Conceiving the New World Order: The Global Politics of Reproduction, ed. Ginsburg and Rapp (Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1995), 3.
  10. This has also been true for poor and working-class Euro-American women. For example, the eugenics movement at the turn of the century was concerned with limiting reproduction among immigrant women, particularly those from southern and eastern Europe.
  11. Leith Mullings, “Households Headed by Women: The Politics of Race, Class, and Gender,” chap. 5 in On Our Own Terms.
  12. Leith Mullings, “Gender and the Application of Anthropological to Public Policy in the United States,” chap. 8 in On Our Own Terms. William Julius Wilson, The Truly Disadvantaged (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1987).
  13. Manning Marable, How Capitalism Underdeveloped Black America: Problems in Race, Political Economy and Society (Boston: South End, 1983), 83.
  14. Louis Farrakhan, quoted in Marable, How Capitalism Underdeveloped Black America, 84–85; Elijah Muhammad, Message to the Blackman in America (Philadelphia: Hakim’s Publications, 1965), 58.
  15. Haki R. Madhubuti, Enemies: The Clash of Races (Chicago: Third World, 1978), 144.
  16. Johnetta Cole, ed., All American Women: Lines That Divide, Ties That Bind (New York: Free Press, 1986), 116.
  17. “‘Autonomist’ may be a more accurate label for those movements and people that seek free social space: autonomous geographic, institutional, or cultural space that allows them to participate as equals, either within the parameters of the state or in an altered political relationship with Euro-American civil society.” Mullings, “Mapping Gender in African-American Political Strategies,” 315.
  18. Hans A. Baer, “The Limited Empowerment of Women in Black Spiritual Churches: An Alternative Vehicle to Religious Leadership,” Sociology of Religion 54, no. 1 (1993): 67.
  19. Audrey Lawson Brown, “Afro-Baptist Women’s Church and Family Roles: Transmitting Afrocentric Cultural Values,” Anthropological Quarterly 67, no. 4 (1994): 173.
  20. See, for example, Jacqueline Jones, Labor of Love, Labor of Sorrow: Black Women, Work, and the Family from Slavery to the Present (New York: Basic, 1985).
  21. See Paula Giddings, When and Where I Enter: The Impact of Black Women on Race and Sex in America (Toronto: Bantam, 1984) 313–14; Jones, Labor of Love, Labor of Sorrow.
  22. Fairclough, To Redeem the Soul of America, 49–50.
  23. Giddings, When and Where I Enter, 302; Jones, Labor of Love, Labor of Sorrow, 283.
  24. Giddings, When and Where I Enter.
  25. Angela Davis, An Autobiography (New York: Random House, 1974), 161.
  26. Shahrazad Ali, The Black Man’s Guide to Understanding the Black Woman (Philadelphia: Civilized, 1989), 170.
  27. The Parks Department estimated four hundred thousand; the march organizers claimed at least one million. Boston University’s Center for Remote Sensing estimated the crowd to be 837,214 with a 20 percent margin of error.
  28. Final Call 14, no. 22 (1995): 19.
  29. Forum on the Million Man March, held at Columbia University Institute for Research in African-American Studies, October 31, 1995.
  30. Asadullah Samad, “One Million Reasons for Black Men to March (Without Our Women),” Los Angeles Sentinel, August 31, 1995, A7, emphasis added.
  31. Henry Lewis Gates, “A Reporter at Large: The Charmer,” New Yorker, April 29–May 6, 1996, 128.
  32. Black Panther Party, Black Panther Sisters on Women’s Liberation (Black Panther Party, 1969), 22.
  33. “The objective of [the transformationist] strategy is to dismantle all forms of inequality. Hence race is perceived not in biological or genetic terms but as an unequal relationship between collectivities, held in place by violence and power. African-American liberation is simultaneously central to the larger struggle to reorganize power and resources on a global basis and dependent on changing the larger power relationships.” Mullings, “Mapping Gender in African-American Political Strategies,” 316.
2019, Volume 71, Issue 04 (September 2019)
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