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Transcript of Stokely Carmichael
Who Am I?
Stokely Carmichael was born in the port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago on June 29 1941
Carmichael's parents immigrated to New York when he was a toddler, leaving him in the care of his grandmother until the age of 11, when he followed his parents to the United States. His mother, Mabel, was a stewardess for a steamship line, and his father, Adolphus, worked as a carpenter by day and a taxi driver by night.
his family moved to a predominantly Italian and Jewish neighborhood in the Bronx called Morris Park. Soon Carmichael became the only black member of a street gang called the Morris Park Dukes. In 1956, he passed the admissions test to get into the prestigious Bronx High School of Science
NAME: Stokely Carmichael
OCCUPATION:Civil Rights Activist
BIRTH DATE:June 29, 1941
DEATH DATE:November 15, 1998
PLACE OF BIRTH: Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago
PLACE OF DEATH: Conakry, Guinea
Full Name: Kwame Ture
Originally: Stokely Carmichael
AKA: Kwame Toure
A stellar student, Carmichael received scholarship offers to a variety of prestigious predominantly white universities after graduating high school in 1960. He chose instead to attend the historically black Howard University in Washington, D.C. There he majored in philosophy, studying the works of Camus, Sartre and Santayana and considering ways to apply their theoretical frameworks to the issues facing the civil rights movement.
Carmichael continued to increase his participation in the movement itself. While still a freshman in 1961, he went on his first Freedom Ride
Undeterred, Carmichael remained actively involved in the civil rights movement throughout his college years, participating in another Freedom Ride in Maryland, a demonstration in Georgia and a hospital workers' strike in New York. He graduated from Howard University with honors in 1964.
Carmichael joined the SNCC
The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee
field organizer for Lowndes County, Alabama. When Carmichael arrived in Lowndes County in 1965, African Americans made up the majority of the population but remained entirely unrepresented in government. In one year, Carmichael managed to raise the number of registered black voters from 70 to 2,600—300 more than the number of registered white voters in the county.
Carmichael founded his own party, the Lowndes County Freedom Organization. To satisfy a requirement that all political parties have an official logo, he chose a black panther, which later provided the inspiration for the Black Panthers
becuase many followed non violence rules Carmichael,like many young activists became frustrated with the slow pace of progress and with having to endure repeated acts of violence and humiliation at the hands of white police officers without recourse.
By the time he was elected national chairman of SNCC in May 1966, Carmichael had largely lost faith in the theory of nonviolent resistance that he—and SNCC—had once held dear
"We been saying 'freedom' for six years," he said. "What we are going to start saying now is 'Black Power.'"
''It is a call for black people in this country to unite, to recognize their heritage, to build a sense of community. It is a call for black people to define their own goals, to lead their own organizations.''
"When you talk of black power, you talk of building a movement that will smash everything Western civilization has created,''
In 1967, Carmichael took a transformative journey, traveling outside the United States to visit with revolutionary leaders in Cuba, North Vietnam, China and Guinea. Upon his return to the United States, he left SNCC and became prime minister of the more radical Black Panthers. He spent the next two years speaking around the country and writing essays on black nationalism, black separatism and, increasingly, pan-Africanism, which ultimately became Carmichael's life cause.
In 1969, Carmichael quit the Black Panthers and left the United States to take up permanent residence in Conakry, Guinea, where he dedicated his life to the cause of pan-African unity.
Carmichael changed his name to Kwame Ture to honor both the president of Ghana, Kwame Nkrumah, and the president of Guinea, Sékou Touré.
In 1968, Carmichael married Miriam Makeba, a South African singer. After they divorced, he later married a Guinean doctor named Marlyatou Barry. Although he made frequent trips back to the United States to advocate pan-Africanism as the only true path to liberation for black people worldwide, Carmichael maintained permanent residence in Guinea for the rest of his life.
Carmichael was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1985, and although it is unclear precisely what he meant, he said publicly that his cancer "was given to me by forces of American imperialism and others who conspired with them.'' He died on November 15, 1988, at the age of 57.