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The Challenge of Black Student Organizations
Robert S. Browne
During A SINGLE MONTH of early 1968, black students openly confronted their college administrations on more than two dozen campuses, mostly white ones, and for the year the total number of such challenges was considerably greater. The student demands were surprisingly similar: official recognition of the local organization of black students as a valid campus organization (which usually meant access to a share of the Student Activities Funds and other amenities); the introduction of some sort of black studies curriculum on the campus; a substantial increase in black student enrollment as well as the hiring of more black faculty; the abolishing of any overt racist practices which might exist within the university; revision of any institutional practices which might inhibit the ability of the black student to function as a homogeneous unit. 
It hardly needs to be mentioned that such uprisings were nothing short of startling to most observers, both on and off the campuses. Traditionally, black students, and most especially those on white campuses, have been virtually "invisible men." With black enrollment typically varying from a solitary one or two students at the smaller private colleges on up to three or four hundred at the giant universities, but rarely comprising as much as five per cent of the school population, the black students on the white campuses have generally been an inarticulate and prosaic group. Indeed, it is probably misleading even to refer to them as a "group" in any political sense of the term, for they have generally eschewed overt organization along racial lines other than for purely social outlet. 
The realities of the white campus naturally forced a certain amount of togetherness upon their black students. The need for social inter-

[[Footnote at bottom]] Robert S. Browne is on the faculty of Fairleigh Dickinson University (N.J.). He is a frequent contributor to FREEDOMWAYS and other publications. 

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