Bureaucratic Insulation and Racial Conflict: The Challenge of Black Power

Chris Rhomberg

in No There There

Published by University of California Press

Published in print February 2004 | ISBN: 9780520236189
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520940888 | DOI:
Bureaucratic Insulation and Racial Conflict: The Challenge of Black Power

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This chapter addresses the controversies surrounding the issues of unemployment, and relations between police and the community formed the local context for the emergence of the black power movement. The proposal for a Police Affairs Committee immediately turned into a test of authority between the city council and the Oakland Economic Development Council (OEDC). The appearance of the Black Panther Party announced a radical turn in the trajectory of black protest. The campaign for the Model Cities program was the most unified example of political mobilization of the Oakland black community to date, and its ending marked a turning point for the movement. In its aftermath, local organizing for black power took three main paths: bureaucratic alliance, bureaucratic opposition, and independent party organization—the Black Panther Party. By 1972, the Black Panther Party had recovered sufficiently from government harassment and its own factional divisions, and had concentrated its resources in Oakland.

Keywords: unemployment; Black Panther Party; Oakland Economic Development Council; city council; Model Cities program; political mobilization; Police Affairs Committee

Chapter.  11609 words. 

Subjects: Race and Ethnicity

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