Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Faculty of Arts

First Advisor

Richard P. Fuke

Advisor Role

Thesis Supervisor


The anomalous position of black people in the United States, following the first World War, set the stage for the arrival of marcus Garvey and the Universal Negro Improvement Association. Originally formed in Jamaica in 1914, Garvey transported the UNIA to the United States as the war was drawing to a close, and quickly rose to popularity as black people responded positively to Garvey and his movement.

Centered around the philosophy of black pride, Garvey’s movement set out to give black people a sense of worthiness in their race and colour. He gave expression to the frustrations of black people who had suffered the effect of agricultural depression in the South, and poverty and unemployment in the North. It was Garvey’s firm belief that a movement erected on a solid foundation of black pride, would wield black people everywhere into a united front thus giving them the power to liberate their race.

Garvey who emerged as a leader in the early 20th century, followed closely in the footsteps of his 19th century forerunners who included, Delaney, Turner and Washington among others. They had articulated various expressions of a black nationalist doctrine and Garvey stressed some elements of their philosophies, modified others, and contributed ideas of his own.

Though the UNIA was to lose its mass appeal about Garvey’s expulsion from the United States, his conviction in his ideas and program remained as strong as ever.

Convocation Year


Convocation Season