Date of Submission

Spring 2016

Academic Programs and Concentrations

Political Studies

Project Advisor 1

Myra Armstead

Abstract/Artist's Statement

Two principles that are fundamental to the West is self-determination and democracy. Self-determination meaning one's control over the path of their destiny and democracy being, the enforcement of egalitarian ideals. The two would seem to guarantee the livelihood of all their citizens to sustain their well-being beyond the means of having just enough to survive. The recent deaths of Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, and Sandra Bland question the legitimacy of these principles because of the apparent lack of regard for their Black bodies. These injustices have spurred serious debates in the public sphere, but reverberate so loudly because this represents the exclusion Black lives have faced for centuries domestically and internationally. The goal of my paper is to examine the Black Freedom Struggle as a whole, to show why Black Lives Matter as a social movement is needed after the Civil Rights Movement and the Black Panther Party, and how likely it is to succeed?

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