Russell Rickford

Associate Professor


Russell Rickford is an associate professor of history at Cornell University. He specializes in African-American political culture after World War II, the Black Radical Tradition, and transnational social movements. His book, We Are an African People: Independent Education, Black Power, and the Radical Imagination, received the 2016 Hooks Institute National Book Award and the 2017 OAH Liberty Legacy Foundation Award. He is currently working on a book about Guyana and African American radical politics in the 1970s.


“‘These People are No Charles Mansons or Spaced-out Moonies’: Jonestown and African-American Expatriation in the 1970s,” in Ideas in Unexpected Places: Reimagining Black Intellectual History, Brandon Byrd, Leslie Alexander, and Russell Rickford, eds. (Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 2022).

“1944-1949,” in Four Hundred Souls, eds. Ibram X. Kendi and Keisha N. Blain (New York: One World, 2021), 312-316.

“‘To Build a New World’: African American Internationalism and Palestine Solidarity,“ Journal of Palestine Studies 48, no. 4 (2019): 52-68.

“Black Power as Educational Renaissance: The Harlem Landscape,” in Educating Harlem: Schools and the Referendum on the American Dream, ed. Ansley Erickson (Columbia University Press, 2019), 210-233.

“African-American Expats, Guyana, and the Pan-African Ideal in the 1970s,” in New Perspectives on the Black Intellectual Tradition, Keisha N. Blain, Christopher Cameron, and Ashley Farmer, eds. (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2018), 233-252.

“Power to the People: Attica and Radical Reconstruction,” Journal of Civil and Human Rights 3, no. 1 (2017): 96-99.

“‘We Can’t Grow Food on All This Concrete’: The Land Question, Agrarianism, and Black Nationalist Thought in the late 1960s and 1970s.” Journal of American History.  103. 2017

We Are an African People: Independent Education, Black Power, and the Radical Imagination. New York: Oxford University Press. 2016

“Black Power and Education for Liberation.” in Black Power 50. Ed. Diouf, Sylviane and Komozi Woodard. New York: New Press. 51-69. 2016

“‘Kazi is the Blackest of All’: Pan African Nationalism and the Making of the ‘New Man’, 1969-1975.” Journal of African American History. 101:97-125. 2016

Black Lives Matter: Toward a Modern Practice of Mass Struggle. New Labor Forum.  Winter, 2015.

“‘Socialism From Below’: A Black Scholar's Marxist Genealogy.” Souls: A Critical Journal of Black Politics, Culture and Society. 13:371-392. 2011

Russell Rickford, ed., Beyond Boundaries: The Manning Marable Reader (Boulder, CO: Paradigm, 2011).

“Integration, Black Nationalism and Radical Democratic Transformation in African-American Philosophies of Education, 1966-74.” in The New Black History: Revisiting the Second Transformation. Ed. Hinton, Elizabeth Kai and Manning Marable. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. 287-317. 2011

Betty Shabazz: A Life Before and After Malcolm X. Naperville, Ill.: Sourcebooks. 2003.

John Rickford and Russell Rickford, Spoken Soul: The Story of Black English. New York: John Wiley & Sons. 2000.

In the news

AMST Courses - Fall 2024