Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Document Type

Master's Thesis


Arts and Sciences



First Advisor

Dr. Tracy Campbell


The impact of Black Power rhetoric and ideology in Louisville, Kentucky in 1967-1970 is explored. The role of Black Power in shaping the discourse of Louisville’s black counter-public and civil rights counter-public is analyzed in the context of the 1967 open housing demonstrations, the May, 1968 riot, and the trial of the ‘Black Six’. Black Power played a vital role in community organizing and in displays of black national and cultural pride. It actively challenged the city’s mystique of Southern white paternalism embraced by the mayoral administration of Kenneth Schmied. Despite that administrations allegations, Black power rhetoric in the West End did not play a significant role in the riot that left two African American youth dead.