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This book offers a look inside the rise and fall of Huey Newton and the Black Panther Party in Oakland from the 60's to the 80's.  Nelson has spoken to many of the participants and assembled what appears to be a well-balanced overview of the promise and problems of the Party.

His essential argument is that the Party began as a criminal enterprise with revolutionary trappings and was eventually consumed by it's own criminality.  The book was apparently somewhat controversial because this, of course, contradicts the standard view that the Panthers began as a worthy endeavor but was tragically destroyed by increasing criminal activity and mismanagement and illegal government meddling.

Despite some awkward prose, this is an excellent look at the turn from non-violence to violence in the Black Community in the mid-60's.

(Reviewed:)

Grade: (B)

  

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Nonfiction
Race
Book-related and General Links:
    -BOOKNOTES : Author: Hugh Pearson Title: The Shadow of the Panther: Huey Newton and the Price of Black Power  in America Air date: August 21, 1994 (C-SPAN)
    -EXCERPT : Chapter 6 of Under the Knife : How a Wealthy Negro Surgeon Wielded Power in the Jim Crow South  By Hugh Pearson
    -ESSAY : Rap Brown: Innocent, or a great actor? (HUGH PEARSON, The Washington Post)
    -ESSAY : Not Just the Color of Our Skin : It's time for blacks  to acknowledge that their experience of oppression does not set them apart from the human race, argues writer (Hugh Pearson, Salon)
    -ESSAY : My Love/Hate Relationship With America's Jews (Hugh Pearson , Culture Front)
    -ESSAY : The best way to say, 'Never again!' (HUGH PEARSON , Newsday
    -INTERVIEW : Law Matters : Randall Kennedy reminds us that criminal justice isn't always black-and-white (Interview by Hugh Pearson, Mother Jones)
    -DISCUSSION : Battle of the Burnouts : David Horowitz Dukes It Out With His Old Sixties Comrades on the Sixties-L Usenet Discussion Group (Front Page)
    -ESSAY : Panthers
    -REVIEW : of The Shadow of the Panther Huey Newton and the Price of Black Power in America By Hugh Pearson (CHRISTOPHER LEHMANN-HAUPT, NY Times)
    -REVIEW : of THE SHADOW OF THE PANTHER Huey Newton and the Price of Black Power in America. By Hugh Pearson (Bob Blauner, NY Times Book Review)
    -REVIEW : of Under the Knife How a Wealthy Negro Surgeon Wielded Power in the Jim Crow South. By Hugh Pearson (Jason Berry, NY Times Book Reviews)
    -REVIEW : of Under the Knife (Abraham Verghese, Chicago Tribune)
    -REVIEW : of Under the Knife (Dennis A. Williams, Emerge)

BLACK PANTHERS :
    -ENCYCLOPAEDIA BRITANNICA : Black Panther Party
    -ARCHIVES : "Huey Newton" (Salon)
    -ESSAY : Who killed Betty Van Patter? (David Horowitz, Salon)
    -ESSAY : "progressive" education : LEFTISTS, DUCKING THE HARSH TRUTHS OF HISTORY  AND THEIR OWN MISTAKES, KEEP LIONIZING THUGS LIKE THE BLACK PANTHERS (David Horowitz, Salon)
    -PROFILE : David Horowitz's Long March (SCOTT SHERMAN, The Nation)
    -ESSAY : TRB FROM WASHINGTON: GERONIMO! (Michael Kelly, New Republic)
    -ESSAY : Black Power City, White Power Suburb: Rhetoric and Reality in Oakland and the East Bay (Robert O. Self)
    -ESSAY : BLACK PANTHERS√≠ LEGACY OF VIOLENCE HAUNTS US STILL (Cynthia Tucker)
    -ESSAY : Public enemies? : Forget about allegations of historical inaccuracy and 'glorifying black violence', the film Panther is an exciting tribute to an organisation that inspired a generation. Talat Ahmed explains, and recommends the books that best provide the background to the film  (Socialist Review)
    -ESSAY : On the Prowl with Bobby Seale (MaryHarris BrianGarvey)

If you liked Shadow of the Panther, try :

Branch, Taylor
    -Parting the Waters: America in the King Years. 1954-63

Cleaver, Eldridge
    -Soul on Ice

Goodman, James
    -Stories of Scottsboro

Haygood, Wil
    -King of the Cats: The Life and Times of Adam Clayton Powell, Jr.

Jackson, George
    -Soledad Brother : The Prison Letters of George Jackson

X, Malcolm & Alex Haley
    -The Autobiography of Malcolm X

Washington, Booker T.
    -Up from Slavery

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