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Florynce "Flo" KennedyThe Life of a Black Feminist Radical$
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Sherie M. Randolph

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781469623917

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469623917.001.0001

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Form It! Call a Meeting!

Form It! Call a Meeting!

Building a Black Feminist Movement, 1971–1980

(p.186) 9 Form It! Call a Meeting!
Florynce "Flo" Kennedy

Sherie M. Randolph

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter examines Flo Kennedy’s leadership in creating a black feminist movement to challenge the critical linkages between all forms of oppression, especially racism and sexism. By 1972, while she was excited about the growth of the predominantly white feminist movement, she was also profoundly disappointed that the struggle still did not fully embrace a black feminist position and make challenging racism as well as sexism central to its political agenda. Thus, Kennedy worked to create interracial feminist organizations that emphasized a black feminist praxis. Her activism during this period was central to building a women’s movement that included women of all races as well as an independent black feminist movement. To Kennedy’s thinking, Shirley Chisholm’s quest for the presidential nomination was the perfect opportunity for white feminists to build an alliance and support a black feminist politics. In 1971 she created the Feminist Party in hopes of bringing together an inclusive group of feminists to support not simply the candidacy of the black congresswoman but black feminism more generally. Equally interested in advancing black feminist praxis, she worked to create the National Black Feminist Organization in 1973 and pushed black women to form their own autonomous black feminist movement.

Keywords:   Black feminist movement/black feminism, National Black Feminist Organization (NBFO), Feminist Party, Shirley Chisholm, Women’s movement, Racism, Sexism, Interracial feminist organizations

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