“Black Lives Matter” and the Persistence of the Sixties

Lecture Description

This presentation argues that constant comparisons between our contemporary moment and the 1960s (the “Sixties”) not only distorts that past, but it also substitutes for political creativity and imagination today. In the case of a phenomenon like “Black Lives Matter,” the persistence of the “Sixties” as a cultural and political point of reference can blind us to the current challenges and opportunities that we confront in the early twenty-first century. Thus, while it is appropriate, even healthy, to review the past in order to grapple with the present, resorting to a “Sixties” framing can have unintended negative consequences for how we might understand the prospects for a transformative black politics in the here and now.

CATEGORIES

African American Civil Rights

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