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Activism and Reform ........................................................ OVERVIEW On April 4, 1968, King was assassinated by a white supremacist. Across America, riots broke out in reaction to the leader’s murder. Violence, arson, and looting continued for nearly a week after King’s death. Though King would continue to be remembered as the leader of the civil rights movement, a new phase in African American activism had begun. Many activists saw King’s death and the slow pace of progress towards equal rights as evidence that King’s nonviolent protest methods should be given up.

2 Overview . . . . . 5 Headline Makers . . . 8 8 10 14 18 21 24 28 31 Mandy Carter . . . Benjamin Chavis . . Eldridge Cleaver . . Angela Davis . . . Marian Wright Edelman Kweisi Mfume. . . Al Sharpton . . . Cornel West . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Topics in the News . . . 34 Affirmative Action Takes Aim at Institutional Racism . . 34 Black Panther Party Is Founded . . . . . ’s Assassination Shocks the Nation . . . . . 42 Jesse Jackson Founds the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition Womanism Gives Voice to Black Women’s Struggles Support Builds for Slavery Reparations .

The neighborhood came to be known as “Dynamite Hill” during the 1960s due to the number of houses that were firebombed by white supremacists. The racially motivated violence and the unfair laws governing blacks’ behavior in public places helped give Davis a sense of social purpose. It also instilled in her a deep resentment of white power structures. Davis’s parents were schoolteachers who taught their children a respect for education as well as community activism. While Davis was a teenager, her mother spent summers living in Manhattan working toward a master’s degree at New York University.

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