I am slowly writing an essay entitled, I am a Negro Communist. This essay will reflect the rise of black literary academics in the social sciences who were major actors in the development of the early black plight of academic thinking.
During the course of the 20th century, the emergence of Marxism as an academic philosophy in education set forth a new wave of examining American culture. It was during (and really before) the Cold War and its sub conflicts (Vietnam), as well as the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s that promulgated many academics to make an ideological shift to the far left. With social and political instability taking place in the United States, Marxist academics were training young students of history, political science, economics, etc., for an intellectual war; this conflict was set to transform the thought process in classes, lecture halls, professional meetings, and published works.
Because academia was dominated by WASP who saw their plight as elite, other minority groups and women were excluded from various forms of higher education. With so many groups being silenced by early modern academics, the process of infiltration of Marx’s racialist ideology was slow to take hold in educational settings. Once white leftist academics bought into the “conflict analysis” idea of absolute political, social, and economic equality, the academy saw a transformation in the writings of history. The historiography became more about the elements of class conflict in society, rather than about the story of the conflict. One of the biggest challenges Marxist and New Left academics faced was that of conservative academics, many who believed that the educational curriculum in America should reflect the Protestant tradition of Anglo thought. Of course such a traditionalist curriculum would exclude a number of oppressed voices.