Elaine Brown (born
March 2, 1943in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) is an American prison activist, writer, and singer; she is a former chairpersonof the Black Panther Party. Brown has declared her candidacy for the Green Party presidential nomination in 2008. [ [http://www.metrodenvergreens.org/2007/03/green_candidate.html ".Green Candidate for President Visits Colorado"] . Metro Denver Greens] She currently lives in Atlanta, Georgiaand is a founder of Mothers Advocating Juvenile Justice.
On December 28, 2007, Elaine Brown renounced her affiliation with the Green Party and her bid for Presidency. [ [http://www.elainebrown.org/ Elaine Brown] ]
Brown grew up in poverty in North Philadelphia. She attended the Philadelphia High School for Girls, the Philadelphia Conservatory of Music, and, briefly,
Temple University. At this time, she became interested in radical politics and began working for the radical newspaper "Harambee". [ [http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USACbrownE.htm "Elaine Brown at Sparticus Educational."] ] At 22, Elaine moved to Los Angeles alone to pursue a career in music and eventually became the first representative of the Black Student Alliance to the Black Congress.
In 1967, she joined the
Black Panther Party. Her initial role was selling Party newspapers; she eventually assumes the role of editor. In 1971, Brown became the first female member of the Party's Central Committee as Minister of Information. She was chairperson of the party from 1974 until it disbanded in 1977. She was personally appointed by Huey Newton, the previous president and founder of the party. In her 1992 memoir " A Taste of Power", she wrote about this experience:
:A woman in the
Black Powermovement was considered, at best, irrelevant. A woman asserting herself was a pariah. If a black woman assumed a role of leadership, she was said to be eroding black manhood, to be hindering the progress of the black race. She was an enemy of the black people.... I knew I had to muster something mighty to manage the Black Panther Party. [ [http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USACbrownE.htm "Elaine Brown at Sparticus Educational."] ]
Brown unsuccessfully ran for the Oakland city council in 1973. Former Black Panther associate,
David Horowitz, has accused Brown of ordering the murder of Betty Van Patter, a Black Panther Party accountant, in 1974. [Horowitz, David (December 13, 1999) [http://www.salon.com/news/col/horo/1999/12/13/betty/index.html "Who killed Betty Van Patter?"] " [http://www.salon.com/index.html Salon.com] ."] Horowitz alleges that Van Patter intended to go public with illegalities she had uncovered in the Black Panthers' account books, and that Brown had Van Patter murdered because these allegations would have hindered Brown's city council bid. [Horowitz, David (December 13, 1999) [http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/ReadArticle.asp?ID=3477 "Black Murder Inc."] FrontPage Magazine.] [Coleman, Kate (June 23, 2003) [http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/ReadArticle.asp?ID=8514 "The Panthers for Real."] FrontPage Magazine.]
Brown recorded two
albums, "Seize the Time!" (Vault, 1969) and "Elaine Brown" ( Motown Records, 1973). [Norwood, Quincy T (2003) [http://www.proudfleshjournal.com/vol1.2/norwood.html "Respect Her Gangsta!: A Review of the Music of Elaine Brown."] "Proud Flesh: A New Afrikan Journal of Culture, Politics & Consciousness."] "Seize the Time" includes "The Meeting," the national anthem of the Black Panther Party.
From 1990 to 1996, she lived in
France. [ [http://www.seizethetime.com/elainebrown.htm "Seize the Time: Elaine Brown."] Seize the Time: Women in Power Seminars.] In 2005, she was a Green Party candidate for Mayor of Brunswick, Georgiabut was disqualified from running and voting in Brunswick because she failed to establish residency in the city. [Editors (April 26, 2005) [http://www.gp.org/press/pr_2005_04_26.html "Elaine Brown to Run as a Green."] Green Party press release.] [First Coast News Staff (November 8, 2005) [http://www.firstcoastnews.com/news/local/news-article.aspx?storyid=46906 "Election Day: Brunswick to Choose Mayor, Write-In Votes for Brown to Be Counted."] "First Coast News".]
Besides "" (Doubleday, 1992), Brown is the author of "The Condemnation of Little B: New Age Racism in America" (Beacon, 2002). In an appendix to the latter book, Brown labels many Black leaders and celebrities, including
Colin Powell, Vernon Jordan, Chris Rock, Russell Simmons, Sean "Diddy" Combs, and Oprah Winfrey, as "New Age House Negroes" and "New Age House Negresses." [Editors (2003) [http://www.proudfleshjournal.com/vol1.2/interview-eb.html "Proud Flesh Inter/Views: Elaine Brown."] "Proud Flesh: A New Afrikan Journal of Culture, Politics & Consciousness".]
Brown is the mother of a grown daughter, Ericka Abram.
* Brown, Elaine. "The Condemnation of Little B: New Age Racism in America." (Boston: Beacon, 2002).
* Brown, Elaine. "A Taste of Power: A Black Woman’s Story." (New York: Doubleday, 1992).
* [http://www.elainebrown.org/ Elaine Brown] , Brown's Web site.
* [http://www.myspace.com/elainebrown1 Brown's MySpace page] , including a recording of her "The End of Silence."
* [http://www.seizethetime.com/ Seize the Time] , a Web site "dedicated to promoting the vision of Elaine Brown."
* [http://www.proudfleshjournal.com/vol1.2/interview-eb.html Interview with Elaine Brown.]
* [http://www.hartford-hwp.com/archives/45a/335.html "Black Panther Party long victimized by campaign of lies"] , an article by Brown in the March 25, 2000 "
* Bray, Rosemary L (January 31, 1993) "A Black Panther's Long Journey: Elaine Brown's life is comfortable now, but the passing years haven't quelled the anger." "New York Times Magazine", 142, Sec. 6. pages 20-23, 66, 68, 76.
* [http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/ReadArticle.asp?ID=3477 Black Murder Inc.] , an account by David Horowitz of the Black Panther Party and Brown's role in it.
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