Guest Lecture: Amos Wilson’s Critique of the Crisis of Leadership

This class will focus on Black Nationalist leadership using the final chapter in Dr. Amos Wilson’s Blueprint for Black Power (Afrikan World Info Systems, New York: 1998) as a framework. In this chapter, Wilson makes an argument for specifically Black Nationalist leadership for Black social, political, economic, and cultural institutions and organizations, arguing that there is a crisis of organized and effective leadership (hence the title) and that this is stunting progress.

Wilson takes an extraordinarily detailed look at the idea of power throughout the book, which to him is a key concept.

Keeping these things in mind, focus on the following points:

*Wilson’s description of ideological leadership orientations: Assimilationist/Moralistic, Black Neo-Conservatism, and Nationalist
*Wilson’s critique of current nationalist projects on pp 853-856
*Wilson’s analysis of the Nation of Islam as an organization

Also think about Wilson’s general critiques and points in reference to the other topics raised in your course so far. What useful points and critiques, if any, can we extract from Wilson even if we don’t fully agree with his conclusions?

Presenter bio: Hank Williams teaches Africana Studies and English at Lehman College. His research focus is the Black Arts Movement of the 1960s-70s. He is also a journalist and associate producer for the Suga’ in My Bowl show on WBAI Radio in New York.

PDF download: Wilson_Chapter31

Creative Commons Licensed CC-NC-BY-ND. Some Rights Reserved.


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