Is African American intellectuals a proper noun?
The term African American is a compound, proper noun, a word for a specific group of people. The plural noun, intellectuals is a common noun. The proper noun African American is a 'noun used as an adjective' to describe the common noun intellectuals.
Using a proper adjective or a proper noun to describe a common noun does not change the common noun into a proper noun; for example McDonald's fries, the noun fries is still a common noun; or for Shakespearean character, the noun character is still a common noun.
The noun Afro is a proper noun, based on the proper adjective, African. The noun Afro is a word for a hairstyle of very tight curls that stand out around the head like a halo, based on the natural hair of people of African origin. The form Afro- is also a prefix for nouns for people or things of African origin; the prefix is a proper form that is always capitalized and usually forms a…