The African Americans

Search for Truth and Knowledge

By Dr. Leonard Jeffries, Jr.

Part Five: African American Response

It appears that the intensity of African American political activity and the strength of the Black Culture are at their heights after periods of military struggle. It is during these times that the three major socio-political patterns of African American response to the American system appear to be most active. This response includes a pattern of Accommodation, which uses petition and protest as a primary vehicle of expression of discontent; a pattern of Separation, which institutionalizes some form of African American Nationalism to establish barriers between itself and the larger community; and a pattern of Rebellion, which utilizes various types of politicized violence to protest against injustices. This study will investigate the relationship between the process of African American socialization, the military experience and the patterns of response in the Political Culture of Black America.

It will focus on the two-hundred-year period from 1775 to the present, which will be looked upon as a continuum, but will be divided into two segments. One concentration will be on the socialization process and the institutional framework of the Black Community from the Revolutionary Era through the Reconstruction Period, with an emphasis on the impact of the slave system. The other concentration will be institutionalization of the struggle for freedom and the development of the African American Community, from the first post-Reconstruction Period through the Civil Rights and Black Power Movements of the 1960's.

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