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What is Huey P. Newton’s concept of “intercommunalism”?  

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In a November 18, 1970 speech at Boston College, Huey Newton, leader of the Black Panthers, described intercommunalism, which he said would be the new path for his party.

Newton defined community in the speech as

a comprehensive collection of institutions that serve the people who live there[.]

His emphasis...

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In a November 18, 1970 speech at Boston College, Huey Newton, leader of the Black Panthers, described intercommunalism, which he said would be the new path for his party.

Newton defined community in the speech as

a comprehensive collection of institutions that serve the people who live there[.]

His emphasis is on the idea that institutions should serve the local people, not vice versa. He says that in response to communism, ruling classes across the world developed what Newton calls Reactionary Intercommunalism. This is a force that has destroyed the idea that community should serve the people. Huey said that this stage has interfered with what Marx and Lenin saw as the way the Communist revolution would unfold: they thought it would be ushered in by the people and by communism. However, now that community no longer serves the people, that cannot happen.

Newton hoped the Black Panthers could revive true community—that is community in service of the needs of the people. He called this Revolutionary Intercommunalism. For him, this intercommunalism means the people would seize the means of production—factories, power plants, industries, banks, and so on—and distribute the wealth from them in an egalitarian way to communities across the world. He noted that across the world there is very little difference between communities and so proposed that they all be revolutionized and share the wealth. This sharing would not go through international and national hands (which Newton defined as colonialist and reactionary) but the money would be placed directly in the hands of small local communities. This was not how it was done in Lenin's time.

Newton also says such intercommunalism would have to exist until bourgeois and inhumane thinking was erased, at which point communism could be ushered in. He states intercommunalism would last until:

such time as we can wash away bourgeois thought, until such time as we can wash away racism and reactionary thinking, until such time as people are not attached to their nation as a peasant is attached to the soil, until such time as that people can gain their sanity and develop a culture that is “essentially human" ...

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