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Fight the Power: African Americans and the Long History of Police Brutality in New York City.


Fight the Power: African Americans and the Long History of Police Brutality in New York City

Clarence Taylor

NYU Press


309 pages




This volume describes the history of police brutality in New York City since the 1940s (when the city experienced a massive wave of migration of African Americans from the South and immigration from the Caribbean) and the black community's and activist groups' struggle to resist the brutality, including the role of religious communities, as well as the resistance by police and their allies to altering the power dynamics between people of color and law enforcement. It argues that race was the major reason for police brutality and that false racialized narratives were a barrier to struggles for change, as blackness was equated with criminality. It discusses the role of the People's Voice newspaper, the Communist party, the Nation of Islam, and civil rights and community activists; the Harlem and Bedford-Stuyvesant riots and the role of national civil rights organizations; Mayor John Lindsay and the creation of the Civilian Complaint Review Board; police brutality under Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, including the torture of Abner Louima and the brutality against Amadou Diallo; the campaign to end the "stop, question, and frisk" policy; and Mayor Bill de Blasio's police reform agenda. ([umlaut] Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR)

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Article Type:Book review
Date:Jan 1, 2019
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