Date of Award

12-1-2009

Degree Type

Thesis

University or Center

Clark Atlanta University(CAU)

School

School of Arts and Sciences

Degree Name

M.A.

Department

African-American Studies

First Advisor

Dr. Daniel Black

Second Advisor

Dr. Josephine Bradley

Abstract

This research was designed to create a model for African liberation by examining the concept of combat literature. It investigated the speakerly texts relationships between David Walker’s Appeal (1830), W.E.B. Du Bois’ The Souls of Black Folk (1903), Kwame Ture and Charles Hamilton’s Black Power (1967), and John McWhorter’s Authentically Black (2004). The purpose of this thesis was to find the common elements within each text that lead to a model for African liberation. This study defined liberation as freedom or release from slavery, imprisonment, captivity, or any arbitrary control of African people by European/Western institutions. Liberation is also defined as control of one’s own self and national destiny versus the modem neo-colonial, economic, and political control of African nations and peoples by Western nations and corporations. The concept of combat literature developed in this study determined if the four texts defined African/black people as a collective, both continental and throughout the Diaspora. Further, combat literature served to decipher if the texts functioned as a medium by which the greater population of Africans suffering under European aggression and exploitation had the ability to communicate a desire for redress. The utilization of combat literature found that three of the texts indicted the system of oppression for its cruelty, and educated African people about the tools or instruments of Western aggression, colonialism, and oppression. The concept of combat literature also assisted in unearthing the political tract, within two of the texts, that identified the natural human rights of oppressed African people rather than the civil liberties granted to them by Western/European institutions. This study bridged one-hundred and seventy-five years of argumentation for African liberation. It codified the divergent ideologies of four major texts produced by intriguing individuals into a single model for African liberation.

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