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Black Lives Matter!: Home

Black Lives Matter Resources: Getting Started

A symbolic representation of Black Lives Matter. Across the bottom of the image, a row of interlocking people (like jigsaw puzzle pieces) in many different shades of color. Above, against a sky-like backdrop, the words "Bloac Lives Matter" centered, surrounded by other words relating to social justice: a sampling include community, power, fairness, economic, freedom, healing, voice, recognition, dignity, strength, empathy, and others.

Johnhain, "black-lives-matter-justice-fairness-5310901," Pixabay, 2020 June. Free download, Unrestricted use.

The Black Lives Matter movement was founded in 2013, in response to the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the killing of seventeen-year-old Trayvon Martin. The movement was initiated by Patrisse Khan-Cullors, Alicia Garza, and Opal Tometi, who initially developed and promoted the use of the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter on social media. The three women then began to organize other forms of protest against the systematic violence against Black people, and the devaluing of their lives. Black Lives Matter (BLM) is now a recognized international organization that seeks to dismantle structural racism and eradicate systematic violence against Black people, and build a more just and open society. 'Black Lives Matter' can also refer to a larger social movement incorporating many different organizations that have similar or related aims.

This guide is intended to be a resource for the Atlantic Cape community to learn more about the Black Lives Matter movement, and about the social structures and conditions from which the movement emerged. While it is impossible within the scope of a single guide to cover all of the concepts and resources that relate to racism, African American history, White supremacy, and other interlocking ideas, the reader is encouraged to use this guide to gain a deeper understanding of structural racism and its history (primarily in the United States), and to look for ways to become part of the solution to the problem.

BLM: The Organization

Black Lives Matter logo

Staying in the Loop

The following social media links have been suggested as ways to keep up-to-date on developments in the broader movement.

Adopted from Julie Gilbert,  Black Lives Matter Guide,  Gustavus Adolphus College, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

Black Lives Lost

Photo collage, created from the following: Lacey, Dan. (2020). George Floyd portrait. Flickr. CC BY NC. 4WardEver UK. (2017). Tamir Rice. Flickr. CC BY NC SA. Trayvon Martin. Black Past. Labeled public domain image. Sandra Bland. Black Past. Labeled public domain image. Michael Brown. Black Past. Labeled public domain image. Eric Garner. Black Past. Labeled public domain image. Trikosko, M. S. (1964). Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X meet before a press conference. Library of Congress, U.S. News & World Report Collection. No known copyright restrictions. Luzopone, , A. (2015).  Photo from march on Apr 29 in NYC for #blacklivesmatter. Wikimedia Commons. CC BY SA. Kiai, M. (2016). Memorial wall to Alton Sterling, near the Triple S Mart. Flickr. CC BY. Blue, F. (2016). Protest for Philando Castile in St. Anthony. Flickr. CC BY. U. S. Army. (2019). Grave of Medgar Evers at Arlington National Cemetery. Wikimedia Commons.

Murtha, L. (2020). CC BY SA. For attributions, view alt-text.

The Problem

The most immediate, and perhaps the most urgent issue that has provoked the current wave of civil rights activism is the unchecked violence experienced by Black people at the hands of law enforcement officers. While it is imperative to address this situation, at both the local and national levels, so is it also imperative to address the underlying structural racism that supports, condones, forgives, or ignores these behaviors and many others that position Black people as Other and lesser. The incidents below illustrate the need through reporting on current and recent events, but represent only a fraction of the toxic interactions between police and Black citizens. 

By the Numbers


This guide was developed by Leslie Murtha, Atlantic Cape Community College Libraries.
Published February 2021.