Congress of Afrikan Peoples
The Congress of Afrikan Peoples (CAP) had its roots in the Black Arts movement in Newark, New Jersey in the mid-1960s, largely through the efforts of Amiri Baraka. By the late-1960s, under the influence of Malcolm X, Ron Karenga’s US organization and the example of the Black Panthers, the CAP became an explicitly political, Black nationalist organization, with a focus of community organizing and cultural politics. In 1970, at its Atlanta Convention, CAP became a national organization dedicated to building a Black Political Party, including involvement in electoral politics.
In the early 1970s, a growing struggle developed within the CAP between the Black nationalists and the emerging Marxist-Leninist forces, headed by Baraka. With the departure of Haki Madhubuti and Jitu Weusi, the Marxist-Leninist tendency in the organization was strengthened and in 1974-75, CAP took up the study of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tse Tung Thought and, for a brief period, worked closely with the October League (Marxist-Leninist). Thereafter, it was briefly on the periphery of the Revolutionary wing.
In February, 1976 the organization changed its name to the Revolutionary Communist League (Marxist-Leninist-Mao Tse-tung Thought). Early in 1980 the Revolutionary Communist League (M-L-M) merged with the League of Revolutionary Struggle (M-L).
The founding of the Congress of Afrikan Peoples in Atlanta in 1970 was attended by 3,000 people, representing a broad cross section of the mainstream Black Liberation Movement and community; and was attended by mass activists, and well-known and diverse personages like Julian Bond, Jesse Jackson, Owusu Sadaukai and Louis Farrakhan. CAP brought together in a national organization some of the major currents of the cultural nationalist and Pan Africanist trends of the Black movement, with hundreds of revolutionary and progressive activist cadre in chapters in 17 cities.
- [Forward 1980, No 3 page 4, 5]