Garvey's Legacy in Context
Posted: Wednesday, August 17, 2005
Colourism, Black Movements and African Nationalism
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By Ayanna Gillian
"From early history to the present, we learn of men and women who have emerged from their environment and so far outdistanced their contemporaries in thought and action that in their day they were apt to be called 'mad, dangerous or fools'. Long after their death, when the truths were espoused or the experiments they conducted validated... then they who have been convinced by experience are prone to admit that the visionary was right and must have been inspired to be so persevering."
These words of Garvey's wife, Amy Jacques Garvey aptly encapsulate the ideology, achievements and mixed public perception of Marcus Garvey. They also underscore the far-reaching and unprecedented nature of his legacy of black self-determinism and the critical importance of black enterprise. It is on the shoulders of Garvey that tenets of political, social and economic self-determination for Africans and the creation of a global African nation were built. In fact the widespread influence of Garveyism as a Pan-Africanist and liberation ideology far outstripped his actual achievements in his lifetime.
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