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Martin Luther King Archives - Institute of the Black World 21st Century

Martin Luther King Jr. in Memphis, Tennessee, 1968

The Language of the Unheard: Martin Luther King Jr.’s Social Democracy

By | Editors' Choice, Reparations

By Robert Greene II, The Nation — Gone was the optimism of 1963. It had been replaced by a sense of disillusionment, a sense of urgency that America was about to lose the last chance to have its soul.” This was how Jet magazine described the climax of the Poor People’s Campaign, which reached Washington, DC, in the tumultuous summer of 1968. For Jet and for many early civil-rights activists, the Poor People’s Campaign…

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Commentary, Articles and Essays by Dr. Maulana Karenga

Beyond the Bondage of Plantation Politics: Crafting Our Own Presidential Platform — Part 2

By | Dr. Maulana Karenga

Part. 2. By Dr. Maulana Karenga — The insistence on calling our righteous and relentless struggle by its rightful name, The Black Freedom Movement, instead of the Civil Rights Movement, is no minor matter.  For it speaks to our commitment to freedom itself and reflects in a real way how we understand ourselves and our initiative and history in the world. Indeed, it reveals our resistance to plantation politics that…

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Commentary, Articles and Essays by Dr. Maulana Karenga

King, Memphis and the Morality of Sacrifice: Dangerous Unselfishness and Righteous Struggle

By | Dr. Maulana Karenga

By Dr. Maulana Karenga — In this month, we rightly turn toward Memphis and the martyrdom of Dr. Martin Luther King and again towards the enduring message and meaning of his life. Indeed, we turn to Memphis because it is the site of the martyrdom of Dr. King, one of the tallest trees in our forest of freedom fighters and a constant reminder we must continue the struggle and keep…

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El Hajj Malik El Shabazz, Min. Malcolm X

Malcolm X and the Ethics of Martyrdom: Witness, Service, Struggle and Sacrifice

By | Dr. Maulana Karenga

By Dr. Maulana Karenga — This is the month that marks another anniversary of the martyrdom of El Hajj Malik El Shabazz, Min. Malcolm X, who was assassinated and martyred in the 39th year of his life, February 21, 1965, and who rose in radiance in the heavens and now sits in the sacred circle of the ancestors, among the doers of good, the righteous and the rightfully rewarded. In 1966,…

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Commentary, Articles and Essays by Dr. Maulana Karenga

The Compelling Need and Notion of Freedom: Retrieving Our Expansive Concept of Struggle

By | Dr. Maulana Karenga

By Dr. Maulana Karenga — As we celebrate each year our strivings and struggles through history, the Black Freedom Movement is always a central focus. But we may not call it by its rightful name, because it has been renamed by the established order as the Civil Rights Movement and this has implications for us in terms of self-determination and how we define our goals, what we count as victory,…

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Martin Luther King Jr. delivers his famed "I Have Dream" speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, August 28, 1963.

600 Black Legislators Resolved to Push Policies for Economic Justice

By | News & Current Affairs

On King Holiday Commemoration: 600 Black Legislators Resolved to Push Policies for Economic Justice. Resolution considered new win for Black Wealth 2020 By Hazel Trice Edney — It was three years ago that a group of national business leaders launched a movement called Black Wealth 2020 partially based on the economic vision articulated by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. King said in his final speech on April 3, 1968: “It’s…

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Martin Luther King

Poverty Isn’t a Privilege: The White Man Is Your Brother Too

By | Commentaries/Opinions

By Keith Magee — Writing to fellow clergy from a Birmingham Jail (The Negro Is Your Brother), Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. – gravely concerned about all who were poor and experiencing inequality – said, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.” The world, especially,…

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Cashing in on King - MLK Day Sales

Cashing in on King

By | Commentaries/Opinions

Get your credit card and check books ready for this year’s King Holiday. By Earl Ofari Hutchinson — Here’s what The Gap Clothing retailer blazoned in an ad, “Over 500 styles MLK Event Huge Savings! Up to 50% off on items.” Macy’s quickly joined in and announced its MLK Day sale noting “20 percent off sitewide with free shipping on qualifying orders. Further details are expected to be announced over the weekend.”…

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