Kathleen Cleaver is a professor of law at Emory University in Atlanta. As a young woman in the turbulent 1960’s — Civil Rights era, Vietnam War — she joined the Black Panther Party and married Eldridge Cleaver, becoming communications secretary of the Black Panthers. If you Google her, you’ll find some criticisms of her life and efforts. I think it’s important to understand what was happening in that era in order to comprehend the passion of those who wanted change. If you think your country is committing acts of genocide and no one is doing anything about it, and your own government is attacking you, how might you react?
You can learn more about Kathleen Cleaver and that time period through:
An excellent book from National Award Finalist, Rita Williams-Garcia, ONE CRAZY SUMMER. Like all of my favorite books, you learn a lot without even realizing it because you’re caught up in the story. Thanks, Rita!
And a film: Kathleen Cleaver was involved in the 2002 documentary, THE WEATHER UNDERGROUND, revealing more about this era.
And her own writings, including: