Cobb, Charles

Charles Cobb
31 March 2015Feature

An African-American activist-turned-academic looks back on the history of armed self-defence in the US civil rights movement

In his recent book on the US civil rights movement, This Nonviolence Stuff’ll Get You Killed, Charles Cobb argues that ‘although nonviolence was crucial to the gains made by the freedom struggle of the 1950s and ’60s, those gains could not have been achieved without the complementary – and underappreciated – practice of armed self-defence’. Indeed, the willingness to use deadly force, Cobb asserts, ‘ensured the survival not only of countless brave men and women but also of the…