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On November 4, 2008, Americans went to the polls and elected the first black president in the history of the United States. Barack Obama was clearly a gifted politician with impressive achievements and a compelling life story. Still, his historic election wouldn't have been possible if earlier generations of African Americans hadn't paved the way. This book tells the stories of pioneering African-American lawyers and politicians. It details their efforts to guarantee black people the same rights enjoyed by other Americans, including the right to vote. In courtrooms, statehouses, and the halls of Congress, the people profiled in this book have helped make the United States what the framers of the Constitution hoped: "a more perfect Union."
Well after slavery was abolished, its legacy of violence left deep wounds on African Americans’ bodies, minds, and lives. For many victims and witnesses of the assaults, rapes, murders, nightrides, lynchings, and other bloody acts that followed, the suffering this violence engendered was at once too painful to put into words yet too horrible to suppress. In this evocative and deeply moving history Kidada Williams examines African Americans’ testimonies about racial violence. By using both oral and print culture to testify about violence, victims and witnesses hoped they would be able to graphically disseminate enough knowledge about its occurrence and inspire Americans to take action to end it. In the process of testifying, these people created a vernacular history of the violence they endured and witnessed, as well as the identities that grew from the experience of violence. This history fostered an oppositional consciousness to racial violence that inspired African Americans to form and support campaigns to end violence. The resulting crusades against racial violence became one of the political training grounds for the civil rights movement.
A Pulitzer Prize-winning history of the mistreatment of black Americans. In this 'precise and eloquent work' - as described in its Pulitzer Prize citation - Douglas A. Blackmon brings to light one of the most shameful chapters in American history - an 'Age of Neoslavery' that thrived in the aftermath of the Civil War through the dawn of World War II. Using a vast record of original documents and personal narratives, Blackmon unearths the lost stories of slaves and their descendants who journeyed into freedom after the Emancipation Proclamation and then back into the shadow of involuntary servitude thereafter. By turns moving, sobering and shocking, this unprecedented account reveals these stories, the companies that profited the most from neoslavery, and the insidious legacy of racism that reverberates today.
A highly praised study of how the public commemoration of emancipation from slavery helped shape African American political culture.
"The arc of the moral universe is long," Martin Luther King Jr. once observed, "but it bends toward justice." In this book, you'll read about many courageous people—including Dr. King himself—who worked for justice during the long struggle for African-American civil rights.
Emphasizing the role of kinship, labor, and networks in the African American community, the author retraces six generations of black struggles since the end of the Civil War, revealing a "nation" under construction.
There are so many books on so many aspects of the history of the United States, offering such a wide variety of interpretations, that students, teachers, scholars, and librarians often need help and advice on how to find what they want. The Reader's Guide to American History is designed to meet that need by adopting a new and constructive approach to the appreciation of this rich historiography. Each of the 600 entries on topics in political, social and economic history describes and evaluates some 6 to 12 books on the topic, providing guidance to the reader on everything from broad surveys and interpretive works to specialized monographs. The entries are devoted to events and individuals, as well as broader themes, and are written by a team of well over 200 contributors, all scholars of American history.

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