Marcus Garvey Fight for the Place of the Black Race

This book entitled Marcus Garvey was written by Rupert Lewis an historian. The book was published by the University of the West Indies press, 2018. The story went on a journey through Marcus Garvey’s life stemming from the late 19th century to the early 20th century. Marcus Garvey is Jamaica’s first national hero and has had a significant impact on the society we are now living in. He has worked hard to ensure that the black race found its rightful place in society and not be victimized by their complexion I have found this book quite interesting as it helped me to have a better understanding of how my ancestors helped to shape the society I am apart of today.

I recommend this book to be a part of the high school curriculum because young persons need to know what the society was like and to assess what it would’ve been like if Marcus had not intervened. The theme of colonial resistance is quite dominant throughout the book which included resistance against the American government and the British colonial system.

He was described by the author as being severe, determined, and strong and refused to yield to superiority if he believed he was right which he carried throughout his life.

Evident of resistance is still present in our society which is quite sad because Garvey worked assiduously in trying to get black people out of mental slavery yet we’re still being victimized by it. In 1914 Marcus Garvey formed the UNIA-ACL (Universal Negro Improvement and Conservation Association and African Communities League).

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Robert hill a historian stated that “Marcus Garvey and the UNIA formed an important link in the historical struggle of black Americans for freedom, justice and equality. It has brought both hope and despair to black Americans in achieving selp-emncipation. amotto was one God, one aim one destiny. Upon Garvey’s arrival in New York on March 6, 1916, he embarked on a journey to inform African Americans about the objectives of the UNIA which increased in the number of followers he had from thirteen to fifty-five hundred. According to Bill Quigley, a law professor at Loyola University New Orleans “coalition of undocumented immigrants, faith leaders, and other allied blocked a bus in San Francisco which was full of people scheduled for deportation”. He used the UNIA as a forum to express them right way blacks should be treated. In addition to that Caribbean countries are economically dependent of first world countries to build our own economy which is one of the reasons why we still have to be resisting these countries.

“The main goal of imperialism today is to ensure that the former imperial states still maintain economic dominance over their colonies. After independence many assumed that the newly liberated nations would begin to ‘undergo politically and economically freedom however in the newly liberated countries they continued to be overthrown by developed countries”. “Among his main objectives, Garvey wanted to restore black people’s countries slavery and colonization had tried to degrade. He wanted that blacks stop thinking they were inferior and that they acquire knowledge, technical and financial means so as to free themselves from the yoke of white people”. (Dagnini) The concept of migration is quite dominant throughout the book which conceptualizes that Garvey preached about migrating back to the mother country. Garvey had seen the conditions of blacks in the Caribbean and Central America and was certain that the only way for African people to have peace was to leave the Americas. Furthermore, in an article Garvey was quoted saying “it was impossible for African-Americans to improve their conditions and enjoy autonomy in the United States, insisting that the only place they can enjoy full self-emancipation was in Africa.” (Ngugi)

This concept of rreturning back to Africa is, still present in Caribbean society specifically in the Rastafarian regime which depicts Garvey’s influence on the Caribbean. “He was a legend of his time and continues to live on through the lyrics of reggae music, inspiring reggae music throughout the world.” (Jill Heather Winnick). I disagree with the notion that in order for blacks to enjoy full emancipation they have to move back to Africa. In our Jamaican society, there are persons who have established, African communities, participates in African traditions and dress in African clothing, therefore, going hack to Africa is not the real solution. “from speech to dress from food to folklore and from music to art and religion African retentions from the time of slavery have become more than a preserved aspects of Jamaican past it has become a parcel of Jamaican culture”. (Markus). This clearly explains why there is no need to migrate back to Africa. “perhaps no individual influenced African American thinking in going back to Africa as much as Garvey did. Additionally, Garvey was also a victim of racial discrimination which started when he was a teen. For example, Marcus Garvey’s first-hand experience in being black that led him to understand what it meant in society.

To my understanding, this is what might have led to Marcus Garvey having to prove to himself for the rest of his life that negro’s had a place in society and was of equal importance as a black man. The problem of racism from the time of slavery and continued to be the mentality of whites against blacks which is why we’re still having that problem. “Garvey concluded that with the exception of England blacks experienced racism and inequality in other countries and it was that experience that stimulated the desire to process the affects of racism and inequality of whites.” (Robert Hill) Marcus Caribbean as born to Marcus much very senior a mason and Sarah Jane Richards a hhousekeeperper on August 1887 in St. Ann’s Bay Jamaica. Contrastingly while Sarah Jane Ribacks was willing to return a smile for a blow and ready to bestow charity upon her enemy. Evidently, Marcus Garvey and his father shwaybackhat Garvey’s mother told Garvey that she had faith in him that he will become successful which might have led to his overconfidence. However, Marcus Garvey did have some flaws which crippled his success.

For example, Marcus Garvey did not take advise from others only himself even if it was the wrong decision at the moment. It was According to the Rupert Lewis, while Marcus Garvey was in him early teens his childhood friend was told to not affiliate herself with him because he was a black. Importantly, Marcus Garvey was also referred to being a romantic by Rupert Lewis because he managed to convince Amy Ashwood’s parents that he was a suitable spouse for Ms. Ashwood. She was also his personal secretary and worked with the Black star line. However, their marriage was short lived because Garvey was unable to manage both the UNIA and the responsibilities of being a husband which saw them getting a divorce after four months along with some assertions that she was being unfaithful to Garvey. Two years later, Garvey met Amy Jacques who became his second wife. She stood by Garvey’s side even when he was imprisoned. Amy Jacques was said to better able to manage her finances which was the opposite of Amy Ashwood which was probably why Garvey and Amy Jacques relationship worked.

However, Garvey’s illness posed a challenge for him throughout his campaign but because of his determination he pushed on. The ACL (African Communities League) was the business arm of the UNIA which focused on raising capital. Some of the business ventures included: restaurants and selling and distribution of magazines so as to raise funds for the UNIA. In June 1919 Garvey insisted that since there was white star line owned by white so shall there be a black star line owned on “the vison of a new Jamaica”. His main aim was to During Garvey’s time in London he suffered from a stroke and was unable to write his letters which had to be dictated by his personal secretary. In his final day on earth he wrote a letter to his sons who moved back to Jamaica at the time with their mother Amy Jacques informing them of his illness and that he will not be returning to Jamaica. Garvey dies on June 10, 1940. However, before he dies he informed his secretary that he wanted his body to be shipped to Jamaica when he died.

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Marcus Garvey Fight for the Place of the Black Race. (2022, Feb 12). Retrieved from

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