This introductory chapter outlines the armed resistance of African Americans during the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s, otherwise known as the Black Power era. It serves as an entry point in the entire discussion of book, which explores black protection efforts in various southern and northern locales, and analyzes the evolution of armed militancy, the significance of tactical nonviolence, and the intricate relationship between self-defense and manhood. Armed resistance served as a significant auxiliary to nonviolent protest in the southern civil rights struggle. Such protective efforts helped local freedom movements survive in the face of white violence, bolstered the morale of civil rights activists, instilled pride in black protectors, and sometimes served as an additional means of coercion in the fight against racism and inequality, specifically against the Jim Crow laws.
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