Black Nationalism and Dee/Wangero

Table of Content

Black Nationalism refers to empower movements within the black American community. These movements emphasize African origins and identity, pride in being black, the desire for community control, and occasionally the yearning to establish a black nation in Africa or parts of the United States. By exploring the origins, beliefs, strategies, and goals of these movements, it becomes evident how they are interconnected and shape the appearance, behavior, and attitudes of Dee/Wangero.

During the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, black people experienced severe social, economic, and political oppression in society. This led to the emergence of Black Nationalism as a response to their circumstances. According to Wilson Moses, Black Nationalism in both the nineteenth and twentieth centuries arose from the status of black people as a subjugated group facing political, social, and cultural domination. It also aimed to bring together divided individuals, seeking political unity among residents of African territories and descendants of Africans displaced by the slave trade.

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In the 1960s, the Southern civil rights movements faced white indifference, leading to a collapse of optimism. This decade marked significant changes for African Americans after the Civil Rights Movement, offering opportunities and growth at both individual and collective levels. During this time, Dee/Wangero was too young to understand the events unfolding.

She would later come to understand the importance of her role in life. Even as a child, Dee/Wangero recognized that there was more to life than living in a dilapidated house without moral or racial awareness, a sense of identity, or racial pride. The concept of “black nationalism” rapidly became popular in American education, but unlike previous forms centered around the land, this term encompassed literature, music, and the arts.

While African Americans as a whole were still constrained within a system that acknowledged individual rights rather than group or collective rights, Dee/Wangero experienced a childhood marked by persistent racial inequality, oppression, and alienation from the white community. There were limitations on one’s speech and the ability to vote, effectuate change, or express opinions. During this era, it was preferable to have minimal knowledge to avoid trouble, but Dee/Wangero had much to express.

She believed there must be a better world where civilization and freedom thrive. The essential aspect of understanding her identity is the ability to reconstruct her image. Without the means to express herself, she is destined to be defined according to “white” standards. Since her knowledge is based on her surroundings, any so-called revolutionary action is likely to mirror the actions of the oppressor. McCartney proposes that Black individuals desire emigration in order to attain political freedom and independence, which are not attainable for them as a minority group.

Dee/Wangero grew tired and frustrated with the life she had been living with her mother and sister. She was disgusted with the social conditions that had given rise to weak racial pride and illiteracy. Dee/Wangero wanted to discover a new path that would foster independence and enlightened thinking. In order to bring about change, she realized that she needed to not only reimagine herself, but also rebuild her connections with humanity and the world around her.

Lindsay 3’s powerful message for African Americans in the early twentieth century was centered around racial pride, political and economic self-determination. For Dee/Wangero, this resonated deeply as she sought to establish her own society, ethical values, racial consciousness, and self-reliance, while breaking free from white American authority. She was aware that there was a greater purpose in life than what she already knew and had a strong desire to seek knowledge beyond her current circumstances.

She had a strong desire to explore her culture, history, and origins, knowing it could have a transformative impact on her life. Her determination led to a newfound confidence and a positive outlook upon her return home. Dee/Wangero firmly believed in the importance of spreading awareness about Black Nationalism to everyone, including her mother and sister. She compared Black Nationalism to essential acts like breathing and eating, emphasizing that it is a crucial aspect that cannot be ignored.

No other race leader had sparked as much optimism among the populace since Frederick Douglas gave his powerful speeches. This leader implemented these aspirations by implementing practical educational initiatives for adults. She learned about the importance of cultural pride, societal independence, and economic empowerment. It perplexed her that her mother and sister hadn’t undergone any transformation and were still trapped in the era of slavery, abolition, and disengagement. It was crucial for them to initiate change, to strive for personal growth, as the world had evolved and they risked being left behind.

Many changes or new educational opportunities may seem “ridiculous” to them. Dee/Wangero’s mother had a quilt that she sewed together for years. Dee/Wangero desired this quilt because she understood its significance and meaning. She had studied, practiced, and embraced a life influenced by internationalized advocacy and appreciated early exposure to Black Nationalism. Simply the idea of leaving the quilt with her sister appeared wasteful and unappreciated, as her sister would not be able to comprehend its importance. Her sister and mother were unaware that this quilt held great meaning to her new life, culture, and teaching.

Black Nationalism has been considered as an alternative to integration for over a century, with black leaders seeking alternative political and social ideologies to combat discrimination in the United States. Dee/Wangero demonstrated this shift through her changed attitude, appearance, and behavior, signaling a cultural transformation and a deep understanding of cultural diversity and personal empowerment. She embraced diverse imagery, comprehended various ideologies, and experienced different sources of power. Her journey allowed her to taste genuine freedom and self-determination, as well as rediscover a profound love for her black identity and embrace its true essence.

Despite the challenges thrown at her and her community, the way she dressed and communicated conveyed her triumph over the once deemed “backward” mindset. This newfound version of Dee/Wangero, free from oppression, radiated joy both internally and externally. Although her mother and sister found it peculiar, she had undergone a spiritual and cultural growth, resulting in belief in herself and her race. Feeling content, Dee/Wangero had no intentions of altering her ways and fashion choices. She encouraged her loved ones to follow suit, urging them to progress and improve their own lives as she had done.

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Black Nationalism and Dee/Wangero. (2018, May 19). Retrieved from

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