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5. The Problem of Huey P. Newton
About this Lecture
In this module, we think about the figure of Huey P. Newton, the cofounder of the Black Panther Party, focusing in particular on: (i) his various scrapes with the law before founding the Black Panthers; (ii) Newton's involvement in the shooting of police officer John Frey in August 1967; (iii) Newton's trial and conviction, and the psychological damage caused his experiences in prison; (iv) the importance of the "Free Huey!" campaign in raising the profile of the Black Panthers, and of Newton himself; (v) Newton's release in 1970, and the difficulty with which he adjusted to his new-found celebrity; (vi) Newton's decline into drug addiction and criminality; and (vii) the extent to which Newton's fortunes overshadow the achievements of the Black Panther Party more generally.
In this course, Dr Joe Street (Northumbria University) explores the Black Panther Party, the Black Power political organisation established by Bobby Seale and Huey P. Newton on October 1966 in Oakland, California. In the first module, we think about the political and intellectual origins of the Black Panther Party, before turning in the second module to the Black Panthers' Ten-Point Program. In the third module, we consider the extent to which the Black Panthers were different from other civil rights groups operating at the time, while in the fourth module, we explore the Black Panthers' practice of patrolling the police. In the fifth module, we focus on the figure of Huey P. Newton, who became an international celebrity following the 'Free Huey' campaign of the late 1960s, before turning in the sixth and final module consider the scope and depth of FBI interference in the activities of the Black Panther Party, and the extent to which these were responsible for the disintegration and collapse of the party by 1982.
Dr Joe Street is Associate Professor in History at Northumbria University. His research focuses on the nexus between politics and culture in the twentieth century, with a particular focus on African American radicalism in the 1960s and 1970s and the San Francisco Bay Area after World War Two.
Cite this Lecture
Street, J. (2021, February 18). The Black Panther Party, 1966-82 - The Problem of Huey P. Newton [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://massolit.io/courses/the-black-panther-party-1966-82/the-problem-of-huey-p-newton
Street, Joe. "The Black Panther Party, 1966-82 – The Problem of Huey P. Newton." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 18 Feb 2021, https://massolit.io/courses/the-black-panther-party-1966-82/the-problem-of-huey-p-newton