Why Is Marcus Garvey A National Hero?
I suppose it would look bad. The leader of the largest organised mass movement of African people in the twentieth century disregarded in his country of birth! All the same, given the anxiety in some quarters about the African heritage in Jamaica, it is truly remarkable that the political elite had the good sense to recognise Garvey’s heroic stature and honour him accordingly.
Born in 1887, only 21 years after the Morant Bay rebellion, and 53 years after Emancipation, Garvey grew up in a Jamaica that was still trapped in psychological bondage. As a child, he would probably have heard the denigrating mantra, ‘Nutten black no good’. He might even have been asked, ‘How yu so black an ugly?’ As if he had anything to do with it.
Garvey grandly rose above the hateful definitions of blackness in Jamaican society and prophetically affirmed, “We are going to emancipate ourselves from…
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