“We Just Came Apart”: How the Nonviolent Actions of the Civil Rights Movement Led to the “Revolutionary Violence” of Black Power

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Southern New Hampshire University
“‘We Just Came Apart’: How the Nonviolent Actions of the Civil Rights Movement Led to the ‘Revolutionary Violence’ of Black Power” is devoted to uncovering the relationship between the Civil Rights and Black Power Movements in order to identify how the shortcomings of the Civil Rights Movement led to the armed self-defense activism associated with Black Power. Both movements had a similar ideological basis that promoted equality for all Americans, yet the tactics that were pursued to achieve their respective goals were vastly different. In the historiography of the Civil Rights Era, Black Power has continually been vilified in the available literature and displayed historically as being ineffective when compared to Civil Rights. This project challenges that assumption and provides evidence for how successful Black Power activism actually was. In the primary sources of Black Power activities, such as the various newspaper articles from the Los Angeles Times that were reviewed, the media denounced the efficacy of the activists and their protests which led to this trend being shown in the early historical literature written on the topic. Secondary sources were used in the development of this project that both strengthened and challenged key conclusions, and primary sources were provided to support the conclusions found here when they conflicted with what other historians have previously found. “‘We Just Came Apart’” is devoted to reinterpreting how Black Power has been viewed in historical literature, as well as to link how the deficiencies of the Civil Rights Movement allowed Black Power to burgeon.