Books and Articles
About the author
Resources for Learning More about Social Movements and Culture
Chapter 2. Scenarios for Revolution: The Drama of the Black Panthers
Acham, Christine. Revolution Televised: Prime Time and the Struggle for Black Power. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2004. Explores the way TV performers like Richard Pryor, Diahann Carroll, and Redd Foxx were influenced by and in turn popularized certain black power ideas via mainstream television in the late 1960s and early 1970s. See also chapter 2 on news coverage of the black power movement.
Bambara, Toni Cade. Black Woman, An Anthology. New York: New American Library, 1970. Classic set of creative and critical writing offering a feminist or womanist take on black power and the Black Arts.
———. The Salt Eaters. New York: Random House, 1980. Great novel about the aftermath of the black power movement among black activists, especially women.
Baraka, Amiri (Leroi Jones). Selected Plays and Prose of Amiri Baraka. New York: Morrow, 1979. Traces the evolution of Baraka’s black power aesthetic.
Brown, Elaine. A Taste of Power: A Black Woman’s Story. New York: Anchor/Doubleday, 1992. Autobiography of one of the most influential women in the Black Panther Party.
Bullins, Ed, ed. New Plays for the Black Theater. New York: Bantam, 1969. Selection of black power plays by a variety of playwrights.
———. The Theme Is Blackness. New York: Morrow, 1973. Collected black power era plays of this onetime Black Panther Party member and key black playwright.
Chapman, Abraham ed. New Black Voices. New York: Penguin/Putnam, 1972. A key anthology from the era, including black power poetry, drama, fiction, and criticism.
Cleaver, Eldridge. Soul on Ice. New York: McGraw-Hill/Ramparts Book, 1967. One of the most widely read books of the black power era. Sensationalist and powerful.
Cleaver, Kathleen, and George Katsiaficas, eds. Liberation, Imagination, and the Black Panther Party: A New Look at the Panthers and Their Legacy. New York: Routledge, 2001. Reconsideration of the Black Panther Party by members and scholars. See especially the essays by Churchill, K. Cleaver (chapter 8), and Doss.
Fabvre, Geneviève. Drumbeats, Masks, and Metaphor. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1983. Sophisticated study of black theater, especially the black power phase.
Foner, Philip S., ed. The Black Panthers Speak. New York: Da Capo Press, 2002. Reprint of a key book introducing the Black Panther Party to a wider audience than when originally published in 1970.
Gayle, Addison, ed. The Black Aesthetic. New York: Doubleday, 1971. Key text of essays from the era trying to define a black power aesthetic.
Hilliard, David, and Donald Weise, eds. Huey P. Newton Reader. New York: Seven Stories Press, 2002. Key selections from Newton’s writings that give a sense of his intellectual and ideological range.
Jones, Charles, ed. The Black Panther Party Reconsidered. Baltimore: Black Classics Press, 1998. Excellent collection of analytic essays. See especially pieces by Singh, Abron, and all of section 4 on gender dynamics in the party.
Newton, Huey P. To Die for the People: The Writings of Huey P. Newton, ed. Toni Morrison. 1972; repr. New York: Writers and Readers Publishers, 1995. This collection gives a sense of Newton’s writings as published during the black power era.
Van Deburg, William. New Day in Babylon: The Black Power Movement and American Culture, 1965–1975. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1992. The most comprehensive examination to date of the impact of black power and the Black Arts movement on all aspects of U.S. culture.
All Power to the People! The Black Panther Party and Beyond. Directed by Lee Lew Lee. Filmakers Library, 1996. Documentary film placing the Black Panther Party in the wider context of black liberation struggles.
Eyes on the Prize (second series). Directed by Sheila Curran Bernard and others. Blackside, 1990. Eight-part series that takes up the story of the movement where the first Eyes on the Prize series ends, as the black power phase emerges.
Huey P. Newton. Directed by Spike Lee. Luna Ray Films, 1990. Film based on Robert Guenveur Smith’s one-man play. Newton’s political brilliance and street craziness seamlessly abide side by side. See the PBS site for the film.
Panther. Directed by Mario Van Peebles. Polygram/Tribeca Productions, 1990. Not always good history but often good drama, this fiction film introduced the Panthers to new generations.
Public Enemy. Directed by Jens Meurer. Icarus Films, 1990. Tells the story of the Black Panthers via memories and analysis by former party members Bobby Seale, Kathleen Cleaver, Nile Rogers, and Jamal Joseph.
Amiri Baraka home page. Includes bibliography and links to articles and audio clips of readings by the black power poet, critic, and playwright.
Amiri Baraka/Leroi Jones, “The Revolutionary Theatre.” Complete text of this pivotal 1965 essay.
Black Panther Party. Site from the Huey P. Newton Foundation, with history, documents, photographs, and other useful resources.
Civil Rights Songs. Focused not on the better-known freedom songs, but on soul music as an expression of civil rights and black power.
Davey D’s Hip Hop Corner. Useful site from which to trace the impact of politics of black power on such hip-hop artists as Public Enemy, Roxanne Shante, Paris, Dead Prez, Tupac (whose parents were both Panther members), and many others.
Good for a Girl. Resource site for womanist/feminist work on and in the form of hip-hop and rap.
Modern American Poetry: Black Arts Movement. New American poetry site with documents, links, bibliographies, biographies of artists, and excerpts from the writings of key Black Arts movement figures.
Panther Photo Archive. Great photos of the Black Panther Party by Roz Payne.
The Sixties Project: “The Basis of Black Power.” Complete text of SNCC manifesto on the meaning of black power.
Social Activism Sound Recording Project: The Black Panther Party. University of California, Berkeley. Includes texts, videos, and audio recordings relating to Black Panther Party activities in California.
“To Serve the People.” Site from the California Heritage Society with bibliography, history, photos, links, and more.
World History Archives: The History of the Black Panther Party. Links to member bios, documents, and articles about the Black Panther Party.