УДК: 316.472.4:004.738.5]:323.118(73)

Авторка: Татјана Вукелиќ


Јазик на текстот: англиски

Јазик на резимето: македонски

Клучни зборови: Твитер хаштаг, движење, расна еднаквост, протести, црни луѓе

Број на страни: 33-47


Пред секоја општествена промена, постои борба за општествени промени. Роден како хаштаг на Твитер, Black Lives Matter прерасна и еволуираше во сил­на алтернатива на политичката изолација со која се соочија застапниците на расната правда по изборот на Барак Обама за претседател на САД. За само две години, Движењето воспостави политика на конфронтација, кревајќи глас про­тив четиривековниот расизам, расната дискриминација, социјалната неед­нак­вост и системскиот расизам. Со континуирниот активизам, Black Lives Matter помага да се смени контраофанзивата против обоените луѓе што го де­фи­нираше долгиот период на процесот на ослободување во 1960-тите и 1970-тите. Тоа стана одржлива масовна борба, соочувајќи се со реакции и бројни предизвици на црнците во Соединетите Американски Држави, во исто време развивајќи ги нивните неверојатни сили.


Black Lives Matter (BLM) Movement began as a social media hashtag in 2013. Mass shootings, police brutalities, traumatic dehumanization against Black people provoked massive protests throughout the United States. The shift of public agenda and public opinion has shaken the American social and political scene dramatically with no possibility for retreat. The US po­li­tical and social scene has entered a new era and serious changes are on the horizon. At the very beginning, the movement was largely unfettered by official politics since there was a belief that subjugated groups or individuals can change American political and social standards. The new generation of modern Black youth activists stood up as the strong alternative against racial injustice and systemic racism. Their commitment to independence and auto­nomy has shaped a new path for justice and liberation.

Between 2013 and 2017 tens of thousands of people participated in Black Lives Matter protests and some statistics show that the term Black Lives Matter was tweeted over a hundred thousand times per day and according to the Pew poll, over 40 percent of the Americans were sympathetic to the mo­ve­ment and the issues of Black people. In the early days, #blacklivesmatter was only one of several popular hashtag slogans along with #Hands­Up­don’t­Shoot, #NoJusticeNoPeace, #IfTheyGunnedMeDown, and #Justice4All, among others (Freelon, Charlton, Clark, 2016: 33-34). These powerful phra­ses encouraged Black activists, intellectuals, scholars, and artists to change the long existing racist theory whose discourse has been based, for more than four centuries, on the terms such as “white supremacy“, “systemic racism“, and “mass incarceration“. In the past decade, the new slogan entered the Ame­rican English lexicon, and it became a part of every aspect of life in Ame­rica, from sports to music, from political discourse to social gatherings, from the media world to all sectors of the world of art. As Barbara Ransby, an activist, writer, and historian, argued in her book Making All Black Lives Matter (2018): “The powerful phrase resonated as a moral challenge, and a response to the deceptive language of colorblindness and post-racialism in the United States after the election of the first African American president in November 2008“(Ransby, 2018: 2). When Barack Obama was elected as the first African American President in the history of the United States, more than thirteen million people of African descent living in the United States believed that things would finally and drastically change for the better. Unfortunately, things did not improve much. Some cosmetic changes have been going on, but the core issues are still deeply rooted in American society. Black people celebrated Obama’s presidency, and truly hoped that it would finally end racism, discourse of segregation, and racial disparity but, Black people are still stigmatized and oppressed, they are indigenous, they struggle with fundamental human and economic inequality, and suffer mass incarceration and dehumanizing forms of police brutality.

Black feminist politics have been the ideological foundation and force of Black Lives Matter Movement since Black women have proved them­selves as prominent leaders, organizers, and spokespersons. Although being marginalized and at the lowest social ladder in American society for cen­tu­ri­es, they insisted on being recognized as equal and visible. Many new activists, both men and women, who had not been previously engaged into Black feminism discourse, were given an entry point and larger vision for change and transformation. The activists have directed their attention to the most marginal and highly endangered groups within poor black communities – those who suffer extreme forms of racialized policing and white supremacy. This has been the first time in the history of the US social movements, since the period of slavery, that Black women have defined the progressive visions of transformation frame for all Black people pursuing a revolutionary path, and at the same time strongly and clearly articulate the oppression, exploit­tation, and liberation of Black people, especially poor and working-class people who represent all categories of the oppressed in the United Sta­tes: the immigrants, the disabled, the indigenous, the Latinos and Afro-Asians, the Muslims, and other minorities. Led by the slogan “once all Black people are free, all people will be free“, the activists, protesters, and other volunteers have raised their voice against all systems of racial disparities and deva­lua­tions. Social media hashtag activism becomes the political struggle to draw attention to inequality, injustice, and structural racism.


The Birth of the Movement

Black people have been stamped for four centuries and the United States remains not even close to racial parity. BLM Movement is connected to street protests, uprisings, marching, and other forms of social and political activism aiming at systemic and fundamental change. The vision of a new and better American society for all implies a society without police shootings and brutality, gender, and sexual equality, and post capitalist society in which competition, greed, gross wealth disparity does not rule over the lives of Black people and other oppressed groups. The acquittal of George Zimmer­man by a Florida jury of murdering the 17-year-old unarmed Black teenager Trayvon Martin in 2012 marked the origin of the Twitter hashtag #black­livesmatter. Alicia Garza, an Oakland activist, watched the verdict on TV from a local bar. Frustrated and angry she wrote a ‘love letter’ on Facebook, as she said, to all Black people ending it with the phrase “Black people. I love you. I love us. Our lives matter“(Arnold, 2017: 9). Two other activists and Garza’s friends, Opal Tometi and Patrisse Cullors, joined forces with Garza, commented her post on the social media platform in the same way by writing #blacklivesmatter and in just a few days it became a viral and historic slogan. Three years later, BLM has developed and grown from a hashtag into a powerful organization of a new generation of Black people challenging racial discrimination and injustice. Two incidents lit a spark – Trayvon Martin’s murder in 2012 and Zimmerman’s acquittal in 2013-sparked nationwide awakening in August 2014 with the rise of collective activities in Ferguson, Missouri.

However, it was the police killing and brutality against Michael Brown, an unarmed teenager, in Ferguson, Missouri in August 2014, and widely broadcasted and tweeted mass riots and demonstrations that followed, that the slogan Black Lives Matter evolved from the world of social networks to real street politics. Millions of Americans watched images on television and social media of Black people who stood up against state violence, and the devaluation of Black life, in a way the world had not seen since the Civil Rights era. The Ferguson uprising was a key moment for the early twenty-first-century struggle for Black freedom. They defied state power and pro­tested against what many people outside the Black community would rather ignore – racial capitalism and systemic racism. Ferguson became the center of Black resistance to the state's oppressive politics and its violent tactics, control, and discrimination. Three weeks after Ferguson protests, Patrisse Cullors joined forces with activist Darnell Moore to organize social network followers who would give support to solidarity freedom rides protesters in Ferguson. The Black Lives Matter Network, later the BLMGN (Black Lives Matter Global Network), grew out of that action. In spring 2017, it had forty-three affiliations and a global profile in three countries: the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada (Ransby, 2018: 6).

At the same time, other national and regional organizations were formed. They include the Chicago-based national Black Youth Project 100 (BYP100) with a membership of young adults between eighteen and thirty-five years of age in affiliations around the country; The Dream Defenders, a multiracial organization led by the people of color in Florida in order to inspire an uprising in culture through transformational organizing; the St. Louis-based Organization for Black Struggle; and Million Hoodies Move­ment for Justice, a people of color-led multiracial national group based in New York City. In addition, a whole range of local organizations emerged or grew larger in size and influence in response to mass killings.

Between 2014 and 2016, almost-everyday incidents of police violence and backlash, and other forms of state violence were the trigger for the uprising of Black people – old, young, working-class people, intellectuals, scholars, and others. Although police violence and dehumanizing treatment and discrimination of Black people on all social levels were at the center of pro­testers’ anger, the list of serious issues appointed to the state authorities was far more extensive. The lack of affordable real estates, minimum wages, or no decent jobs for colored people at all, rising personal debts, inaccessi­bi­lity to healthcare, and the same opportunities for education have all facilitated the death of tens of thousands of Black people who became disposable to the twenty-first century economy of racial capitalism.

The election of Donald Trump as the forty-fifth president of the United States in November 2016 represented an indirect backlash against the radical antiracism of BLMM/M4BL. By openly supporting the white nationalists, Trump’s administration provoked and directed the movement into a new phase of activity focusing on integrity, unity, and coalition work. At the beginning of 2017, a coalition of more than 50 groups representing the inte­rests of Black communities across the United States was formed and na­med The Movement for Black Lives (M4BL). It was the crucial platform for a cross-movement campaign under the title “Beyond the Moment“ which marked the fiftieth anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s historic “Beyond Vietnam“ speech which called for new strategies of resistance.

There are also relatively new movement organizations and local orga­ni­zations such as Leaders of a Beautiful Struggle in Baltimore, The Justice League in New York, Let Us Breathe Collective in Chicago, Tribe X, and Hands Up United etc. that are serving some other functions. They support base-building organizations through new infrastructures, a network of re­la­tion­ships, and movement culture. These groups are less visible, but they bolster public awareness across movement work. They provide political edu­cation, skills, and tactical training between high and low periods of movement activities (Morris, 1984: 28).


The Political Genealogy of the BLMM/M4BL

No movement appears out of thin air. There is always a prologue to certain situations, which lead to the conditions, and circumstances that set for the movements to emerge. Some of them are historical, the others political or economic, and finally, social issues beyond someone’s control. Still, there is always a human factor that is the most crucial. The emergence of some changes does not refer solely to history since the proponents of the present situation may not even be aware of historical issues they stand for.

What is the genealogy of the Black Lives Matter Movement/­Movement for Black Lives (BLMM/M4BL)? In the 1990s, the HIV/AIDS epidemic ravaged vulnerable populations worldwide, including Black gay men and Black drug users. In the United States, organizations emerged that were intent on challenging the devastation of AIDS in Black communities (Ransby, 2018: 12). Organizations from Bebashi in Philadelphia to the Minority AIDS Projects in Los Angeles, to the National Coalition of Black Lesbians and Gays, to the National Minority AIDS Council all stood up to respond to the suffering of Black people. Cathy Cohen, a leader of the Black AIDS Mobilizations (BAM), points out that the central role Black feminists and Black gay/queer activist play is essential to the Black tradition and is a part of the political roots of BLMM/M4BL (Cohen, 1999: 11).

In August 2005, Katrina, a devastating hurricane, hit the southern Gulf coast of the United States, including the predominantly Black city of New Orleans. Local authorities and the federal government under President George W. Bush were slow and inept in response. Thousands were left to suffer and struggle for themselves as water washed away their homes. Those suffering and dying were mostly Black and poor people. As Milwaukee M4BL queer and gender nonconforming organizer M. Adams put it, „Katrina and its aftermath felt particularly important to the general conscious-raising of Black folk, and the millennial generation. In some ways, it laid the ground to articulate the state’s negligence as violent – and it helped folk question what the function of a government/state is. It was an incredible example and sym­bol of many forms of structural anti-Black racism“(Adams, 2018: an email interview).

Another important issue responsible for the emergence of BLMM/­M4BL occurred at the Black Radical Congress (BRC) in June 1998 in Chi­ca­go. BRC is a coalition of Black left organizers and intellectuals reacting to the devastating impact of neoliberal policies on the Black community and to the lack of serious and responsible Black leadership. The BRC linked dis­pa­ra­te radical traditions, made Black feminism significant, and strongly confronted white supremacy and racial capitalism (Black Scholar 28, no. 1, 1998: 71-73). The concept of the BRC was to create a Black left stream to make the Black radical tradition more distinguishable from the mainstream Black political stream that was apparent in representational race politics and the integration of Black elites into existing hierarchies. The BRC program was relevant and adjusted not only to Black people but to all oppressed people in the US. The most important characteristic of the BRC, a sixteen-year precursor to BLMM/M4BL, is its gender politics, which placed a Black feminist paradigm prominently within the larger framework of Black left and radical thought (Black Scholar 28, no. 1, 1998: 71-73).

There are two other organizations, Critical Resistance (CR) and INCI­TE! Women of Color Against Violence, which helped in creating a strong platform on which the political tradition of BLMM/M4BL emerged. These two movement organizations set the foundation for BLMM/M4BL with the demand for prison abolition at their center and the suppression of extreme violence against Black people. CR was founded in 1997 by Angela Y. Davis, Ruth Wilson Gilmore, and Rose Braz and officially launched in 1998 in Berkeley, California, at the conference attended by thirty-five hundred people. The group activists describe their concept in this way: “Critical Re­sis­tance is building a member-led and member-run grassroots movement to challenge the use of punishment to ‘cure’ complicated social problems. We know that more policing and imprisonment will not make us safer. Instead, we know that things like food, housing, and freedom are what create healthy, stable neighborhoods and communities. We work to prevent people from being arrested or locked up in prison. In all our work, we organize to build power and to stop the devastation that the reliance on imprisonment and policing has brought to ourselves, our families, and our communities“(Davis, 1998: 53).

Growing out of the anti-domestic violence movement in the year 2000, INCITE! explains its aims as follows: “It is impossible to seriously address sexual and intimate partner violence within communities of color without addressing these larger structures of violence (including militarism, attacks on immigrants’ rights and Indigenous treaty rights, the proliferation of prisons, economic neo-colonialism, the medical industry, and more). So, our organizing is focused on places where state violence and sexual/intimate partner violence intersect” (Ransby, 2018: 17). A great number of influential publications and books that have emerged from INCITE!’s work collectively argue for several things. The writers and activists demand for better state protection in cases of domestic violence, and they call for more arrests and longer prison sentences for domestic crimes and violence. They believe that the way the police intervene often make situations even worse and more dan­gerous and traumatic in poor Black communities. Finally, all authors point out leadership by those most affected by violence – poor and working-class women of color. The rise of mass incarceration in the 1990s and early 2000s, the dehumanizing of Black bodies, especially those of Black women, poor, and queer people, engaged the political for the emerging actions of the BLMM/M4BL.

Michelle Alexander’s book, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, which appeared on the New York Times best­seller list helped to educate and explain to the mass audience the injustice and inhumanity being performed on Black people. Alexander wrote: “More Black men were under the control of the criminal justice system in 2010 than had been enslaved in 1850. Even after serving their sentences, mostly for non­vio­lent drug offenses, former felons are relegated to the status of second-class ci­tizenship, a “racial caste system,” in which they are denied full voting rights, kept under harsh surveillance, excluded from public housing and many student-funding opportunities, and banned from certain jobs“  (Alexander, 2012: 189-90).

Angela Yvonne Davis, an African American scholar, activist, and the only surviving hero of the global African diaspora, a towering symbol and figure of resistance for the new generation of Black activists, and one who has provided moral and political support to the movements in numerous ways, points out in her 2016 book, Freedom Is a Constant Struggle: “Over the last two decades I would say, there has actually been sustained organizing against police violence, racism, racist police violence, against prisons, the pri­son industrial complex, and I think the sustained protests we are seeing now have a great deal to do with that organizing. They reflect the fact that the po­litical consciousness in so many communities is so much higher than people think“(Davis, 2016: 36).

Davis is an icon in Black liberation movement history, as well as Black feminist thought of the 1960s and 1970s. She became a powerful figure of Black femalehood in a society that often derogated Black women to ste­reotypes. She was recognized in public for the first time when she was fired from her teaching job at the University of California because of her left-wing political orientation. She was also a political prisoner (1970-72), who was wrongly accused of involvement in the failed rescue of another political prisoner – George Jackson, an activist, and her close friend. Her raised fist in the courtroom became a symbol of Black resistance for the entire generation. “Free Angela“ was a movement that was iconic and popular all around the glo­be. After being released from prison in 1972, she dedicated her life to pri­so­ner solidarity and prison abolition. When Angela Davis was a political prisoner, most BLMM/M4BL had not yet been born but still, her impact on them is strongly palpable and her ideas resonate and are incorporated into their program (Ransby, 2018: 19-20). When she visited Ferguson, two months after the uprising she gave a speech and said: “Like everyone else who identifies with current struggles against racism and police violence, I have uttered the words ‘Ferguson’ and ‘Michael Brown’ innumerable times. Both inside and outside the country – for me as for people throughout the world – the very mention of Ferguson evokes struggle, perseverance, courage, and collective vision of the future“(Davis, 2016: 19).

In mainstream US politics, one of the most important moments for the emergence of BLMM/M4BL was the election of Barack Obama in 2008 as the first Black president of the United States. It raised hopes that the country was entering a post racial moment in American life. People believed that the legacy of enslavement, imperialism, and systemic racism were over not only in the United States but globally. African Americans initially supported him unanimously at the polls and defended him against any form of criticism during his first year of presidency. It is not pretentious to say that almost all Black people were simply very proud to see a Black President in the White House. However, very soon Obama was exposed to severe criticism, threats, and attacks on his legitimacy and integrity from the Republicans in Congress and publicly. The Republicans, led by Donald Trump, the forty-fifth US president, raised doubts about his citizenship and questioned his politics. Joe Biden, the current US president, and Delaware senator in the period of Obama presidency, said for Obama: “He is the first mainstream African American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy“. He also called Barack Obama the extraordinary Negro that he later deeply regretted. In 2007, Time magazine speculated that African Americans were expressing greater support for New York senator Hillary Clinton because of questions over whether Obama was “black enough“(Kendi, 2017: 489).

All these attacks and vilifications caused the defensive reflex in the Black communities. The issues of racial calamities, police terror, heightened mass shootings, and the lack of decent-paying jobs, the financial crisis, and overall decrease of economy hit many Black communities very hard being a constant reminder that there was no post racial era at all.

Very soon, Black activists became deeply aware that having a Black fa­mily in the White House would not improve the lives of Black people in ge­neral. Added to this were the constant cases of police violence, harass­ments, racial profiling, and the killing of Black civilians. Many believed in the prosperity and symbolism of a Black president, but it did not work out as they hoped for. Charlene Carruthers, BYP100 director, and one of the leaders in BLMM/M4BL described her disillusionment with Obama: “I voted for him when he ran for senate, and I voted for him when he ran for president for the first time. It was with the understanding that there was an optimism and a sentiment of progressivism that his platform at least sought to achieve. Shortly after, there was a wakeup call, again, about the power of politicians in transforming society…And so what I have learned and what I hope for many of us learned again are the limitations of any politician to change our lives or to transform our lives“(Ransby, 2018: 26).

While many white liberals hoped that, the election of Barack Obama would put an end to racial redemption, hoping that the country has been done with race issues finally, and that four hundred years of white supremacy had been swept away, the post racial ideal was far from the reality. Still, there has been progress for some small groups of Black people called Black elites. A very small number of Black millionaires and billionaires, CEOs, and highly paid celebrities have cracked the racial glass ceiling, but at the same time they have provoked the disparities between poor and rich Black people which are more visible and annoying, not only for the blacks but for the whites, too. St. Louis poet and activist Tef Poe summed up the feelings of Black communities in an open letter to Barack Obama: “We know you know this is wrong, so the dis­connect between your words and your personal convictions has raised ma­ny questions in the Black community. Now we are organizing against you and members of your party as though we did not vote for you to begin with. This saddens me because we rooted for you. We love you and want to sing prai­ses of you to our children, but first we need a statement of solidarity from you to the young black people facing the perils of police brutality. We will not get this statement, and we know it“(Poe, 2014).

The decreased Black confidence in Obama, on the one hand, and the rich political legacy and language of previous people of color-led resistance movements like BRC, CR, and INCITE! On the other, marked a shift in US politics in the years leading up to BLMM/M4BL. Thousands of white people joined the BLMM/M4BL protests, and network actions and many of them had not even been members. All these movements and events are an im­por­tant background to BLMM/M4BL. Some political leaders in the movements have key roles to the understanding of the roots of these movements. Their con­sistent and transparent work at the national level, since 2014, have brought the movements to extensive progress. As Jelani Cobb, an African Ame­rican journalist, stated in the essay in The New Yorker magazine, March edi­tion, in 2016, Alicia Garza, for example, worked for P.O.W.E.R (Power Organized to Win Employment Rights), a Bay Area grassroots economic jus­ti­ce group that works to fight gentrification and advocates on behalf of youth. She had participated in several progressive and leftist campaigns in the Bay Area before 2014, including the protests after the transit-police shooting of Oscar Grant on New Year’s Day 2009. As a politically engaged queer Black wo­man married to a transgender man, she has made queer people issues central to her larger political worldview (Cobb, 2016).

Charlene Carruthers of BYP100 worked for the Women’s Media Group and Color of Change before she joined BYP100. Opal Tometi, born of Nigerian immigrant parents, learned very early about the injustice of co­lo­nia­li­sm, and systemic racism in the US. She became one of the sharpest spo­ke­spersons for the rights of Black immigrants helping to form the Black and Brown Coalition of Arizona in response to the racist, anti-immigrant policies of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. As a college student at the University of Arizona, Opal recalled “People (undocumented immigrants trying to find safe heaven) were dying in the desert just miles away from campus…Black lives are not theoretical: we are human beings. I am not talking about theo­retical problems here; I am talking about real consequences that are playing out every day in our lives. These gas lighting efforts are about dis­tracting us from the conversations so that we end up talking about wording and semantics, rather than the issue at hand. Stop telling me I do not have the right words“(Tometi, 2017, an interview).

From 2017, she has been working as the executive director of the na­tio­nal organization the Black Alliance for Just Immigration. Patrisse Cullors had led campaigns against mass incarceration for years. She began her po­li­ti­cal career as a young girl in Los Angeles, learning from the experiences of her own family. Her father spent some time in California prisons on various drug charges and died in a homeless shelter in 2009. Her brother was wrongly accused and imprisoned in Los Angeles County jail where he was severely bea­ten by the jail guards. Trying to understand how racism and discrimination had caused so much pain and suffering in her own family, Patrisse turned to political spheres, from volunteering with the LA Bus Riders Union and Labor Strategy Center to the Coalition to End Sheriff Violence in Los Angeles.


Opponents of BLMM/M4BL

Protests trigger counter protests, and for that reason it is important to investigate some negative discourse linked with BLMM/M4BL and racial injustice in general. There are three major countermovement hashtags at Twitter: #AllLivesMatter, #BlueLivesMatter, and #WhiteLivesMatter. The occurrence of these hashtags has been evidently connected to the origin of #BlackLivesMatter following the acquittal of the killer of Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman on July 13, 2013, through 2020. All three counter­mo­ve­ment hashtags emerged in the second half of 2014 as a response to the con­sistent growth of BLMM/M4BL. While #BlackLivesMatter and its oppo­nents, #AllLivesMatter and #BlueLivesMatter, show similar patterns, #White­LivesMatter, which is more overtly White supremacist, displays dis­tinc­tive patterns (Dunivin et al. 2021a: 8). It is also very important to em­phasize that BLM-related searches spike dramatically during, after protests, and after police violence and incarcerations of black people. There is a re­cur­si­ve relationship between protest and attention. Protest generates attention, and attention generates protest. Thus, protest is a part of a continuous cycle whereby changes in ideas facilitate political action, and these actions can further cement ideas into the popular imagination (Dunivin et al. 2021b: 8).

Protest, movement, and countermovement are public discourse pri­ma­ry movers and when they are large and widespread, they can cause cata­ly­tic reactions. The reactions lead to the political actions and public un­der­stan­ding of current social issues. In the case of BLMM, racially stigmatized police homicides have been a fact of American life for decades, the response of BLMM organizers is a new and consistent reality. BLMM is a decentralized mo­vement that does not rely on large organizations that lobby for its po­si­ti­ons. Rather, it is a movement has primarily mobilized every follower through social media. Furthermore, the protests that have had the largest impact on the use of antiracist vocabulary are often the ones where footage of police violence was widely circulated to the public. That suggests that BLMM is a movement whose cultural impact is initially established through the me­mo­ria­lization of specific events. BLMM affects American culture by using protests to focus attention first on individual victims and then draw attention to larger policy issues (Dunivin et al., 2021c: 9.)



Black Lives Matter Movement/Movement for Black Lives (BLMM/­M4BL) is a progressive cultural and social novelty in the United Sta­tes which had not been seen and experienced since the Civil Rights era, aiming pre­do­mi­nantly at new and intensive process of a new Black generation for em­po­werment, we-paid jobs, decent housing, cultural practices, education, way of thinking about human rights, and restorative justice for the Black community. It has been best described by Ruth Wilson Gilmore and her partner Craig Gilmore, radical intellectuals and the most prominent advocates for justice and human rights for the Blacks: “Sparked by police murder in capitalism’s neoliberal turn, the post-Ferguson movement may therefore be understood as protests against profound austerity and the iron fist necessary to impose it. The movement’s central challenge is to prevent work from facilitating another transition in regimes of policing and incarceration, displacement and disinvestment through formal but not transformative reforms“(Gilmore and Gilmore, 2016: 157-158).





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