Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “To Die for the People” as Want to Read:
To Die for the People
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

To Die for the People

4.37  ·  Rating details ·  414 ratings  ·  21 reviews

A fascinating, first-person account of a historic era in the struggle for black empowerment in America.

Paperback, 248 pages
Published September 1st 2009 by City Lights Publishers
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about To Die for the People, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about To Die for the People

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.37  · 
Rating details
 ·  414 ratings  ·  21 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of To Die for the People
Jun 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow. Required reading for anyone who claims that an interest in socialism/communism is about listening to a bunch of white guys. Huey's dedication to his Marxist-Leninist principles and also his ability to break down dialectics and the views of the BPP left me in awe after every essay. He knew the true meaning of international solidarity and also maintained humility while admitting his faults. I also learned a lot more about him, like the fact that he didn't learn how to read until the age of 17 ...more
To Die for the People is a collection of essays and speeches by Huey Newton. On the street level the Black Panthers did some brave and admirable things but as far as their rhetoric they are more or less hardline Marxists more so than black nationalists. Newton is actually pretty hard on African/Cultural Nationalists calling them cultists with no solutions to black peoples problems.

Newton also shows himself to be a huge sucker putting pics of himself on a guided tour in Communist China during th
Rei Avocado
huey p. newton was probably the most brilliant marxist leninst to ever grace north american soil. read this.
Wendy Liu
May 25, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Essays, correspondence, Party leaflets and interviews. Lots of overlap with Reactionary Suicide (Newton’s memoir) but I enjoyed reading this anyway, with one notable exception: the laborious analysis of the film Sweet Sweetback, which was too heavy-handed for my liking. Worth reading if you’re interested in learning more about the Black Panthers.
Dec 28, 2007 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
if only I could find this book for under a hundred bucks!
Davu Zulu
Aug 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A very great and educational book regarding The Black Panther Party and their ideology. A must read!
Aug 27, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is fascinating as an historical and political document. I learned a lot about the Black Panthers and about Huey P. Newton, and I still have much to learn. This book spans Newton's writings between 1969-71 and is edited by Toni Morrison. It includes speeches and letters. It gives insight into material that originated then as radical and is now accepted in the mainstream; it also gives insight into the hopes for Communism that did not materialize. Here is one quote from the book that I l ...more
I found the book to be very articulate and provocative. In this book, Huey Newton defended his party's philosophies, past mistakes, and political positions against criticisms and attacks. He was very Marxist-Leninist in terms of how he saw the world and how he believed his people would rise from their oppression. He believed his people's struggle was not an isolated struggle that in fact, his people's struggle needed to ally themselves with other struggles at the time against the same enemy: Cap ...more
Jay Michelle Williams
Nov 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
I cherished Newton's thoughts, and I also recognized the love and dedication he exhibited for the people. Newton provided his audience with clear facts about the organization and their intentions. I thought about J. Edgar Hoover a few times as my eyes scanned the pages. Hoover considered the Black Panther Party the biggest threat to America's safety but made it his job to target all Black Political leaders (e.g., NAACP leaders, Malcolm X, and Huey Newton.) I genuinely wish the Black Panther Orga ...more
City Lights Booksellers & Publishers
"Huey P. Newton's To Die for the People represents one of the most important analyses of the politics of race, black radicalism, and democracy written during the civil rights-Black Power era. It remains a crucial and indispensible text in our contemporary efforts to understand the continuous legacy of social movements of the 1960s and 1970s."
—Peniel Joseph, author of Waiting Til the Midnight Hour: A Narrative History of Black Power in America

"Newton's ability to see theoretically, beyond most in
Jared Della Rocca
Having recently read Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison and The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander, I found Huey Newton's writings and speeches to be a fitting finish to that trilogy. Newton succinctly captures the theory of revolution, understanding the need for both the big - large marches, shows of force - and the small - busing programs for families of prisoners, breakfast programs for children.

If Martin Luther King's speeches took you to soaring heights, Huey Newton's will show you the path it
Marisa Natale
Jul 10, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My only criticism of this book is the way it was edited. It was not organized chronologically, which I think would have really helped me to understand the development of Newton's thought over the years. Instead it was organized in loosely thematic chapters like "white america" which isn't really a discernible category. Still, Fernandez chose writings very well to include and they were certainly inspiring and thought provoking. I only wish it had been organized differently!
Chad Montabon
Jun 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Of the books written contemporaneously with the prominent years of the B.P.P. this is clearest, and most easily read. 'Soul on Ice' by Eldridge Cleaver (and likely a ghost writer) was clunky, 'Sieze the Time' by Bobby Seal was similar and George Jackson's 'Blood in My Eye' was little more than 'radical' talk with the common talking points and chants.

'To Die for the People' flows well and it's short. It spells out the basic ideals of the B.P.P..
Mar 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Must read, a real education in revolution.
Jul 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
A great book to see the development and fine tuning of Newton's ideas. A must read if interested in studying the black panthers beyond the caricature image some movies provide.
Aug 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Jan 15, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is pretty powerful stuff. While I will not say I agree with everything Newton says or writes, this gives great insight into the mind of the black man, and the black revolution.
Rafael Suleiman
Jan 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A compelling compilation of the writings of one of the founders of the Black Panther Party.
Nov 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
What a man.
Aug 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely revolutionary for my political consciousness. Newton deserves way more credit than he gets as a theoretician of dialectical materialism. His conceptions of Intercommunalism and Revolutionary Suicide need to become required reading for all American leftists.
Terry NeSmith
Oct 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A fascinating view into the politics of the late 60s to early 70s. I understand now how different life could be if government officials listened to the people. Awakening!
rated it it was amazing
Mar 28, 2018
Chelsea Emery
rated it it was amazing
Jun 20, 2019
Link De
rated it it was amazing
Jan 02, 2019
rated it it was amazing
May 08, 2017
rated it it was amazing
Sep 10, 2018
Katherine Bankole-Medina
rated it it was amazing
Apr 06, 2016
T. Coyle
rated it it was amazing
Apr 28, 2017
Malik Green
rated it it was amazing
Dec 11, 2014
Jay Maratha
rated it really liked it
Feb 18, 2019
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Wretched of the Earth
  • Assata: An Autobiography
  • The End of Policing
  • Soul on Ice
  • A Taste of Power: A Black Woman's Story
  • Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-Tung
  • Starsight (Skyward, #2)
  • Blood in My Eye
  • An Autobiography
  • Are Prisons Obsolete?
  • All About Love: New Visions
  • Women, Race & Class
  • Freedom Is a Constant Struggle
  • How Europe Underdeveloped Africa
  • Black Skin, White Masks
  • Liberalism: A Counter-History
  • Black Against Empire: The History and Politics of the Black Panther Party
  • Black Power: The Politics of Liberation
See similar books…
Huey Percy Newton was co-founder and leader of the Black Panther Party for Self Defense, a civil rights organization that began in October 1966.

News & Interviews

It’s October, which means it’s the perfect time to scare yourself with a truly unsettling book. But if you’re a casual reader of dread and...
201 likes · 63 comments
“Laws should be made to serve the people. People should not be made to serve the laws.” 39 likes
More quotes…