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African American history



  • How White Fears of ‘Negro Domination’ Kept D.C. Disenfranchised for Decades

    George Derek Musgrove and Chris Myers-Asch, authors of "Chocolate City: A History of Race and Democracy in the Nation's Capital" have recently written a report for a nonprofit advocating DC statehood. They argue that Congressional efforts to disempower DC residents after 1871 have reflected White fears of Black political power. 



  • Stacey Abrams’s Fight against Voter Suppression Dates Back to the Revolution

    by Karen Cook Bell

    "The roots of Black women’s activism can be traced back to the Revolutionary Era, when thousands of Black women protested with their feet and ran away from their enslavers." This act would shape the demands of radical Black politics in the ensuing decades.



  • The Strange Case of Booker T. Washington’s Birthday

    by Bill Black

    A history teacher's saga of the verification of a seemingly simple fact shows that sources may not always be reliable, and that our knowledge of many facts is the product of historians' labor. 



  • Black Soldiers and the Civil War

    by Aston Gonzalez

    Deborah Willis's book "The Black Civil War Soldier" utilizes visual imagery other historians have often passed over to describe how Black soldiers understood military service in relation to their hopes for future economic, political, and familial security. 



  • What Manhattan Beach’s Racist Land Grab Really Meant

    by Alison Rose Jefferson

    Debates over  the redress of past racial injustice must acknowledge that some past actions have harmed communities in ways that can't be repaired, including the loss of space for communal leisure or equal access to everyday pleasures. 



  • If It’s Not Jim Crow, What Is It?

    by Jamelle Bouie

    NYT Columnist Jamelle Bouie relies on the historical writing of J. Morgan Kousser, who showed that disenfranchisement after 1877 affected African American and poor white southerners, was implemented through color-blind means, and had partisan, rather than simply racial, goals. But it was still Jim Crow, and the comparison to Georgia's new law is fair and valid. 



  • Pay Attention When They Tell You To Forget

    by Christina Proenza-Coles

    Writing across genres and time periods, the books of poet and memorist (and former Poet Laureate of the United States) Natasha Trethewey, historian Martha S. Jones, and poet-playwright-essayist Claudia Rankine constitute a conversation about Black women's work to remember history that is subjected to public suppression.