That's the question the NY Times Magazine is asking in this article. Well, his may be the candidacy that signals most decisively the end of old-style African American political thought and practice, but the cracks in the dam started with a host of African Americans, some famous and some infamous and others anyonymous (Watts, Ford, Nutter, Steele, etc.), who have courageously resisted the hegemony that is black political thought. I don't know if Obama is the end, but I'm glad to see the discussion take on national prominence.
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