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Black RevolutionaryWilliam Patterson and the Globalization of the African American Freedom Struggle$
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Gerald Horne

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780252037924

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252037924.001.0001

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The Road to Revolution

The Road to Revolution

(p.15) 1 The Road to Revolution
Black Revolutionary

Gerald Horne

University of Illinois Press

This chapter presents a biography of Patterson and looks at his road to revolution. By 1923, Patterson became a named partner in what became New York City's leading Negro law firm, Dyett, Hall, and Patterson. In 1926, he made official what some assumed was the case—he joined the Communist party—though an epochal event the following year led to his making this political decision, a career choice to become a professional revolutionary. He then left his law firm, instead devoting his life to the Communist party and its idea of a step-by-step drive to socialist revolution, paved all the way by one democratic advance after another—as demonstrated in the first major instance by the Scottsboro case. Soon he could be found at the subway entrance at 135th Street and Lenox Avenue, selling the CP newspaper. He also began participating in street-corner meetings and distribution of leaflets, and he attended classes at the party school.

Keywords:   Negro law firm, Communist party, socialist revolution, democratic advance, Scottsboro case

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