Vanderbilt professor Devin Fergus challenges the common belief that, during the '60s and '70s, the Black Power movement's separatism and openness to violence put them at odds with the mainstream Civil Rights movement. In Liberalism, Black Power, and the Making of American Politics, 1965-1980, Fergus paints a more complicated picture. Using the activist environment in North Carolina as an example, he reveals how liberal and radical elements engaged each other, discouraging violence and translating commonly held ideals into civic action. The resulting nationalist-liberal coalition terrified the New Right and paved the way for current developments, including the election of President Barak Obama. Devin Fergus will speak and sign Liberalism, Black Power, and the Making of American Politics.
Tue., May 26, 7 p.m., 2009