Between the World and MeFirst published in 2015, Between The World And Me was written as a letter to Coates' teenage son, and recounts the author's experiences growing up in Baltimore's inner city and his growing fear of daily violence against the Black community. The narrative explores Coates' bold notion that American society structurally supports white supremacy.Based on the 2018 adaptation and staging of the book at the Apollo Theater, this HBO Special combines elements of the Apollo's production, including powerful readings from Coates' book, and incorporates documentary footage from the actors' home life, archival footage, and animation
Publication Date: 2021
Bayard RustinThe March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom was the biggest protest America had ever seen. It culminated in Civil Rights leader Martin Luther King Jr's iconic "I Have A Dream" speech. But the man who made it all possible, chief organiser Bayard Rustin, was almost written out of history not because he was black, but because he was gay.
Publication Date: 2021
The Harlem Hellfighters' Great WarIn 1917, the 15th regiment of the NY National Guard, made up exclusively of black soldiers, was sent to fight the Great War in Europe. They discovered the horrors of the battlefields but also a place where there was no racial segregation.Not only they went to Old Continent to fight liberty and democracy, but also one that was waged in their own country - the war for racial equality. They were the most decorated American soldiers of the First World War as the fought on the front line for the longest time: 191 days. Their hoped was that when they came back home they would finally be considered as full-fledged US citizens. That was not the case. Through interviews of their family members, letters, and archive film, we will discover their story
Publication Date: 2021
Black Designers in American Fashion by Elizabeth WayFrom Elizabeth Keckly's designs as a freewoman for Abraham Lincoln's wife to flamboyant clothing showcased by Patrick Kelly in Paris, Black designers have made major contributions to American fashion. However, many of their achievements have gone unrecognized. This book, inspired by the award-winning exhibition at the Museum at FIT, uncovers hidden histories of Black designers at a time when conversations about representation and racialized experiences in the fashion industry have reached all-time highs.In chapters from leading and up-and-coming authors and curators, Black Designers in American Fashion uses previously unexplored sources to show how Black designers helped build America's global fashion reputation. From enslaved 18th-century dressmakers to 20th-century "star" designers, via independent modistes and Seventh Avenue workers, the book traces the changing experiences of Black designers under conditions such as slavery, segregation, and the Civil Rights Movement. Black Designers in American Fashion shows that within these contexts Black designers maintained multifaceted practices which continue to influence American and global style today.Interweaving fashion design and American cultural history, this book fills critical gaps in the history of fashion and offers insights and context to students of fashion, design, and American and African American history and culture
Publication Date: 2021
Four Hundred Souls by Ibram X. Kendi (Editor); Keisha N. Blain (Editor)#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER * A chorus of extraordinary voices tells the epic story of the four-hundred-year journey of African Americans from 1619 to the present--edited by Ibram X. Kendi, author of How to Be an Antiracist, and Keisha N. Blain, author of Set the World on Fire. FINALIST FOR THE ANDREW CARNEGIE MEDAL * NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The Washington Post, Town & Country, Ms. magazine, BookPage, She Reads, BookRiot, Booklist * "A vital addition to [the] curriculum on race in America . . . a gateway to the solo works of all the voices in Kendi and Blain's impressive choir."--The Washington Post "From journalist Hannah P. Jones on Jamestown's first slaves to historian Annette Gordon-Reed's portrait of Sally Hemings to the seductive cadences of poets Jericho Brown and Patricia Smith, Four Hundred Souls weaves a tapestry of unspeakable suffering and unexpected transcendence."--O: The Oprah Magazine The story begins in 1619--a year before the Mayflower--when the White Lion disgorges "some 20-and-odd Negroes" onto the shores of Virginia, inaugurating the African presence in what would become the United States. It takes us to the present, when African Americans, descendants of those on the White Lion and a thousand other routes to this country, continue a journey defined by inhuman oppression, visionary struggles, stunning achievements, and millions of ordinary lives passing through extraordinary history. Four Hundred Souls is a unique one-volume "community" history of African Americans. The editors, Ibram X. Kendi and Keisha N. Blain, have assembled ninety brilliant writers, each of whom takes on a five-year period of that four-hundred-year span. The writers explore their periods through a variety of techniques: historical essays, short stories, personal vignettes, and fiery polemics. They approach history from various perspectives: through the eyes of towering historical icons or the untold stories of ordinary people; through places, laws, and objects. While themes of resistance and struggle, of hope and reinvention, course through the book, this collection of diverse pieces from ninety different minds, reflecting ninety different perspectives, fundamentally deconstructs the idea that Africans in America are a monolith--instead it unlocks the startling range of experiences and ideas that have always existed within the community of Blackness. This is a history that illuminates our past and gives us new ways of thinking about our future, written by the most vital and essential voices of our present.
Publication Date: 2021-02-02
George Dixon by Jason WindersOn September 6, 1892, a diminutive Black prizefighter brutally dispatched an overmatched white hope in the New Orleans Carnival of Champions boxing tournament. That victory sparked celebrations across Black communities nationwide but fostered unease among sporting fans and officials, delaying public acceptance of mixed-race fighting for half a century. This turn echoed the nation's disintegrating relations between whites and Blacks and foreshadowed America's embrace of racial segregation. In this work of sporting and social history we have a biography of Canadian-born, Boston-raised boxer George Dixon (1870-1908), the first Black world champion of any sport and the first Black world boxing champion in any division. George Dixon: The Short Life of Boxing's First Black World Champion, 1870-1908 chronicles the life of the most consequential Black athlete of the nineteenth century and details for the first time his Carnival appearance, perhaps the most significant bout involving a Black fighter until Jack Johnson began his reign in 1908. Yet despite his triumphs, Dixon has been lost to history, overshadowed by Black athletes whose activism against white supremacy far exceeded his own. George Dixon reveals the story of a man trapped between the white world he served and the Black world that worshipped him. By ceding control to a manipulative white promoter, Dixon was steered through the white power structure of Gilded Age prizefighting, becoming world famous and one of North America's richest Black men. Unable to hold on to his wealth, however, and battered by his vices, a depleted Dixon was abandoned by his white supporters just as the rising tide of Jim Crow limited both his prospects and the freedom of Blacks nationwide.
Publication Date: 2021-09-13
A Matter of Moral Justice by Jenny CarsonA long-overlooked group of workers and their battle for rights and dignity Like thousands of African American women, Charlotte Adelmond and Dollie Robinson worked in New York's power laundry industry in the 1930s. Jenny Carson tells the story of how substandard working conditions, racial and gender discrimination, and poor pay drove them to help unionize the city's laundry workers. Laundry work opened a door for African American women to enter industry, and their numbers allowed women like Adelmond and Robinson to join the vanguard of a successful unionization effort. But an affiliation with the powerful Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) transformed the union from a radical, community-based institution into a bureaucratic organization led by men. It also launched a difficult battle to secure economic and social justice for the mostly women and people of color in the plants. As Carson shows, this local struggle highlighted how race and gender shaped worker conditions, labor organizing, and union politics across the country in the twentieth century. Meticulous and engaging, A Matter of Moral Justice examines the role of African American and radical women activists and their collisions with labor organizing and union politics.
Publication Date: 2021-07-13
William Greaves : filmmaking as mission by MacDonald, Scott & Stewart, Jacqueline NajumaWilliam Greaves is one of the most significant and compelling American filmmakers of the past century. Best known for his experimental film about its own making, Symbiopsychotaxiplasm: Take One, Greaves was an influential independent documentary filmmaker who produced, directed, shot, and edited more than a hundred films on a variety of social issues and on key African American figures ranging from Muhammad Ali to Ralph Bunche to Ida B. Wells. A multitalented artist, his career also included stints as a songwriter, a member of the Actors Studio, and, during the late 1960s, a producer and cohost of Black Journal, the first national television show focused on African American culture and politics. This volume provides the first comprehensive overview of Greaves's remarkable career. It brings together a wide range of material, including a mix of incisive essays from critics and scholars, Greaves's own writings, an extensive meta-interview with Greaves, conversations with his wife and collaborator Louise Archambault Greaves and his son David, and a critical dossier on Symbiopsychotaxiplasm. Together, they illuminate Greaves's mission to use filmmaking as a tool for transforming the ways African Americans were perceived by others and the ways they saw themselves. This landmark book is an essential resource on Greaves's work and his influence on independent cinema and African-American culture"
Publication Date: 2021
Traveling Black by Mia BayA riveting, character-rich account of racial segregation in America that reveals just how central travel restrictions were to the creation of Jim Crow laws--and why "traveling Black" has been at the heart of the quest for racial justice ever since.Why have white supremacists and civil rights activists been so focused on Black mobility? From Plessy v. Ferguson to #DrivingWhileBlack, African Americans have fought for over a century to move freely around the United States. Curious as to why so many cases contesting the doctrine of "separate but equal" involved trains and buses, Mia Bay went back to the sources with some basic questions: How did travel segregation begin? Why were so many of those who challenged it in court women? How did it move from one form of transport to another, and what was it like to be caught up in this web of contradictory rules?From stagecoaches, steamships, and trains to buses, cars, and planes, Traveling Black explores when, how, and why racial restrictions took shape and brilliantly portrays what it was like to live with them. "There is not in the world a more disgraceful denial of human brotherhood than the 'Jim Crow' car of the southern United States," W. E. B. Du Bois famously declared. Bay unearths troves of supporting evidence, rescuing forgotten stories of undaunted passengers who made it back home despite being insulted, stranded, re-routed, and ignored.Black travelers never stopped challenging these humiliations and insisting on justice in the courts. Traveling Black upends our understanding of Black resistance, documenting a sustained fight that falls outside the traditional boundaries of the Civil Rights Movement. A masterpiece of scholarly and human insight, this book helps explain why the long, unfinished journey to racial equality so often takes place on the road.