Stokely Carmichael

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Carmichael, Stokely,

1941–98, African-American social activist, b. Trinidad. He lived in New York City from 1952 and graduated from Howard Univ. in 1964. Carmichael participated in the Congress of Racial Equality's "freedom rides" in 1961, and by 1964 was a field organizer for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) in Alabama. As SNCC chair in 1966, he ejected more moderate leaders and set off a storm of controversy by calling for "black power," a concept he elaborated in a 1967 book (with C. Hamilton). He was also an anti-Vietnam War activist, and railed against both racial and economic injustice. His increasingly separatist politics isolated Carmichael from most of the civil-rightscivil rights,
rights that a nation's inhabitants enjoy by law. The term is broader than "political rights," which refer only to rights devolving from the franchise and are held usually only by a citizen, and unlike "natural rights," civil rights have a legal as well as a
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 movement. He immigrated to Guinea in 1969 and spent the rest of his life there, calling himself a pan-African revolutionary but largely relegated to the political fringe. He changed his name to Kwame Ture, and was married briefly to the singer Miriam MakebaMakeba, Miriam
, 1932–2008, South African singer. She became the first black South African to achieve international fame and she played a fundamental role in introducing African music to the West.
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. His memoir Ready for Revolution was posthumously published in 2003.


See biography by P. E. Joseph (2014).

Carmichael, Stokely

(1941–  ) radical activist; born in Trinidad. A carpenter's son, he emigrated to America (1952) and was shocked by the racism he encountered. Involved in civil rights while attending Howard University (1960–64), he was elected leader of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and changed the group's focus from integration to "black liberation." Gifted, handsome, and articulate, he popularized the phrase "black power" and as a Black Panther came to symbolize black violence to many whites. He came to favor forging alliances with radical whites and resigned from the Panthers over this approach (1968). He and his wife, South African singer Miriam Makeba, moved to Guinea (1969), where he supported Pan-Africanism. He eventually returned to the U.S.A., but he dropped out of all civil rights activities.
References in periodicals archive ?
and Black Panther leader Stokley Carmichael, with the words "I'm not going to Israel." Then he explained why:
Two days after Meredith began his march, he was shot and forced to stop; however, his march was considered so important that it was continued by Stokley Carmichael, Martin Luther King, Jr., and other leaders of the Civil Rights Movement.
Instead of the usual 1960s stock-footage montages, Lee opts for images that create a context for Goodman's ideas, such as the cross-disciplinary BBC program on which NAACP leader Stokley Carmichael, Allen Ginsberg and Goodman casually discuss sexual vs.
For example see Julius Lester, All Is Well (NY: 1976); Lovesong: On Becoming a Jew (NY: 1988); On Writing for Children and Other People (NY: 2004); Elaine Brown, A Taste of Power: A Black Woman's Story (NY: 1995); Stokley Carmichael, Ekwueme Michael Thelwell and John Edgar, Ready for Revolution: The Life and Struggles of Stokley Carmichael (Kwame Ture) (NY: 2005).
When I saw Barack Obama, I thought of the civil rights anthem "We Shall Overcome" and Sam Cooke's song "A Change is Gonna Come." I thought of civil rights heroes like John Lewis, Robert James, James Forman, Stokley Carmichael, James Farmer, James Bevel, Andrew Young, Ralph Abernathy and many more who were subjected to unbearable psychological pressure and physical violence in their journey to demand African-American civil rights.
And the militant Stokley Carmichael who led the students, both black and white, to knock on every black door in the small towns and byways of the South to mobilize them to vote.
Historic documents have proven how efforts were made to subvert Marcus Garvey and his UNIA; how Pan-Africanists like Malcolm X, Kwame Ture (aka Stokley Carmichael) and many others, were undermined.
Her passion led her to become a project director for the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee, run by civil rights leader Stokley Carmichael.