Blacks and reds: race and class in conflict, 1919-1990 by Earl Ofari Hutchinson

By Earl Ofari Hutchinson

during this very important new learn, Hutchinson examines intimately the yankee Communist party's mostly unsuccessful attempt to win the allegiance of black americans within the twentieth century. From the time of its construction in 1919, Hutchinson argues, the celebration sought to recruit African american citizens, in the beginning through arguing that Marxist ideology most sensible served their pursuits; extra, Communist ideologues declared that injustices visited upon African americans resulted from monetary and sophistication antagonism, now not racial bigotry. yet as Hutchinson sincerely demonstrates, tensions among blacks and "Reds" elevated as time handed and as a African American leaders akin to W.E.B. DuBois, James Weldon Johnson, and Kelley Miller made it transparent that they wouldn't allow African American pursuits and agendas to turn into subservient to occasion ideology.
     whereas Communism can have appealed to a few, Hutchinson indicates that the majority blacks weren't drawn to the celebration, its penchant for theoretical abstraction, or its demand proletarian rebellion. He additionally dispels the commonly held false impression that twentieth century black political routine have been principally creations of Communist tasks. Such notions, he argues, aren't basically improper, yet function impediments to figuring out African American firms within the context in their specific and traditionally black identity.

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12 Fortunately, The Chairman of the Communist International was a little more realistic than Trotsky. Gregori Zinoviev realized that blacks had their own aims, programs, and organizations. He did not regard this as a threat to Marxist goals. '' Zinoviev cautioned McKay that blacks should not be tempted to go it alone. " McKay's seeming coziness with the Soviet leaders evidently convinced W. L. Hurley, an American consular official, that McKay had become a threat. Hurley tracked McKay's activities in the Soviet Union for William J.

The delegates came from twenty states, and represented sixty-one black organizations. The roster of delegates read like a who's who of black America. The NAACP, Urban League, and National Negro Business League sent their top officials. The editors of the Pittsburgh Courier, Chicago Defender, and Baltimore Afro-American, the three major black newspapers, were present. The noted deans of Morehouse, Wilberforce, and Howard universities discussed political strategy with students. Black businessmen rubbed shoulders with black unionists.

Page 5 Notes 1. David A. , 1961), 16984; William Z. Foster, History of the Communist Party of the United States (New York: International Publishers, 1952), 22634, 26668 and 44446; Robert L. : Howard University Press, 1974), 20747. 2. For a broad view of the roots of the cleavage between blacks, whites, and the marxist left, see Tony Martin, Race First (Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1976); Sterling Stuckey, Slave Culture (New York: Oxford University Press, 1986); Theodore G. , Voices of a Black Nation (Berkeley: Ramparts Press, 1973); Edward Peeks, The Long Struggle for Black Power (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1971).

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