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Free the LandThe Republic of New Afrika and the Pursuit of a Black Nation-State$
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Edward Onaci

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781469656144

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469656144.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 19 September 2021

Birth of the New Afrikan Independence Movement

Birth of the New Afrikan Independence Movement

A Historical Overview

(p.15) 1 Birth of the New Afrikan Independence Movement
Free the Land

Edward Onaci

University of North Carolina Press

Chapter 1 provides a historical overview of the NAIM from its inception into the 1980s. It explains how two brothers from South Philadelphia helped organize a Black Government Convention in 1968. Tracing the birth and early development of the NAIM clarifies how political geography, historical context, and personal circumstance helped shape activism. After relocating to the Detroit metropolitan area in the 1950s, brothers Milton and Richard Henry became community activists and political leaders. Working through the Group on Advanced Leadership and the Freedom Now Party, political struggle taught them the limits of seeking full entry into a nation that circumscribed their political power. At the same time, the Henry brothers witnessed decolonization in Africa, especially Ghana, which challenged them to reconsider the meaning of black liberation. Under the tutelage of people like Malcolm X and “Queen Mother” Audley Moore, they shifted their politics from reform and inclusion to revolution and self-determination. Changing their names to Gaidi and Imari Abubakari Obadele, they called for the 1968 convention. Convention participants declared black people’s right to independence from the United States of America, formed a provisional government with Robert F. Williams as the nominal president, and demanded reparations.

Keywords:   New Afrikan Independence Movement, Provisional Government, Republic of New Afrika, Black liberation, Robert F. Williams, Milton Henry/Gaidi Obadele, Richard Henry/Imari Abubakari Obadele, Malcolm X, Audley Moore, Black Government Convention 1968

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