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University of South Florida Poynter Memorial Library's Launch of Special Omali Yeshitela Collection

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Released Feb 4, 2010
On January 21, 2010, the University of South Florida's Poynter Memorial Library held a public launch of its Special Omali Yeshitela Collection, the largest pubic collection of works by Omali Yeshitela, Chairman of the African Socialist International. Omali Yeshitela, whose activism began in the 1960s as an organizer in St. Petersburg, Florida of the first membership-based organization of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee, has lived a long life of consistent struggle for justice and freedom. He is the founder of The Burning Spear Newspaper, the oldest black power newspaper in the world that began publication in 1968 and continues even today, now printed in North America, Europe and Africa.

Omali Yeshitela built an organization named the Junta of Militant Organizations (JOMO), an influential black power organization, following his 1968 imprisonment for tearing down an offensive mural from the walls of the St. Petersburg City Hall that depicted African people with exaggerated features playing music and serving white people. He has chaired the African People's Socialist Party since its founding in 1972 and has led the Uhuru Movement for several decades.

Omali Yeshitela's influence both ideologically and politically is undeniable in the International African Revolution. He was a primary force in making reparations a household name, having organized the first World Tribunal on Reparations to Black People in 1982. His theory of African Internationalism, projected through the innumerable books, speeches, and articles, guides organizers in various places around the world.

He now chairs the African Socialist International, a worldwide African revolutionary organization, and like Marcus Garvey, Malcolm X and Kwame Nkrumah, his influence will be felt for generations.

Hear Omali Yeshitela talk live on and read his writings on
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