Book picks similar to
A Breath of Freedom: The Civil Rights Struggle, African American GIs, and Germany by Maria Höhn
The Rebellious Life of Mrs. Rosa Parks
Jeanne Theoharis - 2013
She shows readers how this civil rights movement radical sought—for more than a half a century—to expose and eradicate the American racial-caste system in jobs, schools, public services, and criminal justice.
Destined to Witness: Growing Up Black in Nazi Germany
Hans J. Massaquoi - 1999
In 'Destined to Witness', Hans Massaquoi has crafted a beautifully rendered memoir -- an astonishing true tale of how he came of age as a black child in Nazi Germany. The son of a prominent African and a German nurse, Hans remained behind with his mother when Hitler came to power, due to concerns about his fragile health, after his father returned to Liberia. Like other German boys, Hans went to school; like other German boys, he swiftly fell under the Führer's spell. So he was crushed to learn that, as a black child, he was ineligible for the Hitler Youth. His path to a secondary education and an eventual profession was blocked. He now lived in fear that, at any moment, he might hear the Gestapo banging on the door -- or Allied bombs falling on his home. Ironic, moving, and deeply human, Massaquoi's account of this lonely struggle for survival brims with courage and intelligence.
The Strange Career of Jim Crow
C. Vann Woodward - 1955
Vann Woodward, who died in 1999 at the age of 91, was America's most eminent Southern historian, the winner of a Pulitzer Prize for Mary Chestnut's Civil War and a Bancroft Prize for The Origins of the New South. Now, to honor his long and truly distinguished career, Oxford is pleased to publish this special commemorative edition of Woodward's most influential work, The Strange Career of Jim Crow.The Strange Career of Jim Crow is one of the great works of Southern history. Indeed, the book actually helped shape that history. Published in 1955, a year after the Supreme Court in Brown v. Board of Education ordered schools desegregated, Strange Career was cited so often to counter arguments for segregation that Martin Luther King, Jr. called it "the historical Bible of the civil rights movement." The book offers a clear and illuminating analysis of the history of Jim Crow laws, presenting evidence that segregation in the South dated only to the 1890s. Woodward convincingly shows that, even under slavery, the two races had not been divided as they were under the Jim Crow laws of the 1890s. In fact, during Reconstruction, there was considerable economic and political mixing of the races. The segregating of the races was a relative newcomer to the region.Hailed as one of the top 100 nonfiction works of the twentieth century, The Strange Career of Jim Crow has sold almost a million copies and remains, in the words of David Herbert Donald, "a landmark in the history of American race relations."
All Deliberate Speed: Reflections on the First Half-Century of Brown v. Board of Education
Charles J. Ogletree Jr. - 2004
A measured blend of personal memoir, exacting legal analysis, and brilliant insight, Ogletree's eyewitness account of the legacy of Brown v. Board of Education offers a unique vantage point from which to view five decades of race relations in America.
Darkwater: Voices from Within the Veil
W.E.B. Du Bois - 1920
E. B. Du Bois first published these fiery essays, sketches, and poems individually nearly 80 years ago in the Atlantic, the Journal of Race Development, and other periodicals. Reflecting the author's ideas as a politician, historian, and artist, this volume has long moved and inspired readers with its militant cry for social, political, and economic reforms for black Americans. Essential reading for students of African-American history
Cornel West - 1993
These topics are all timely yet timeless in that they represent the continuing struggle to include African Americans in mainstream American political, economic & social life without destroying their unique culture. The essays have the feel of a fine sermon, with thought-provoking ideas & new ways of looking at the same old problems. They can be quickly read yet take a long time to digest because of West's unique slant on life. Already well known in scholarly circles, he's increasingly becoming more visible to the general public. This book should make his essays more accessible to a greater number of people.--Library JournalPrefaceIntroduction: Race mattersNihilism in Black America The pitfalls of racial reasoningThe crisis of Black leadership Demystifying the new Black conservatismBeyond affirmative action: equality and identityOn Black-Jewish relations Black sexuality: the taboo subjectMalcolm X and Black rage Epilogue to the Vintage edition
Why We Can't Wait
Martin Luther King Jr. - 1964
Martin Luther King’s classic exploration of the events and forces behind the Civil Rights Movement—including his Letter from Birmingham Jail, April 16, 1963.“There comes a time when the cup of endurance runs over, and men are no longer willing to be plunged into the abyss of despair.”In 1963, Birmingham, Alabama, was perhaps the most racially segregated city in the United States. The campaign launched by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Civil Rights movement on the segregated streets of Birmingham demonstrated to the world the power of nonviolent direct action.In this remarkable book—winner of the Nobel Peace Prize—Dr. King recounts the story of Birmingham in vivid detail, tracing the history of the struggle for civil rights back to its beginnings three centuries ago and looking to the future, assessing the work to be done beyond Birmingham to bring about full equality for African Americans. Above all, Dr. King offers an eloquent and penetrating analysis of the events and pressures that propelled the Civil Rights movement from lunch counter sit-ins and prayer marches to the forefront of American consciousness.Since its publication in the 1960s, Why We Can’t Wait has become an indisputable classic. Now, more than ever, it is an enduring testament to the wise and courageous vision of Martin Luther King, Jr.Includes photographs and an afterword by Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr.
Parting the Waters: Martin Luther King and the Civil Rights Movement 1954-63
Taylor Branch - 1988
Martin Luther King Jr. during the decade preceding his emergence as a national figure. This 1000-page effort, which won the Pulitzer Prize as well as the National Book Critics Circle Award for General Nonfiction, profiles the key players & events that helped shape the American social landscape following WWII but before the civil-rights movement of the 60s reached its climax. Branch then goes a step further, endeavoring to explain how the struggles evolved as they did by probing the influences of the main actors while discussing the manner in which events conspired to create fertile ground for change. Also analyzing the beginnings of black self-consciousness, this book maps the structure of segregation & bigotry in America between '54 & '63. The author considers the constantly changing behavior of those in Washington with regard to the injustice of offical racism operating in many states at this time.Forerunner: Vernon Johns Rockefeller and Ebenezer Niebuhr and the Pool TablesFirst Trombone The Montgomery Bus BoycottA Taste of the World The Quickening Shades of PoliticsA Pawn of HistoryThe Kennedy TransitionBaptism on Wheels The Summer of Freedom RidesMoses in McComb, King in Kansas City Almost Christmas in Albany Hoover's Triangle and King's MachineThe Fireman's Last Reprieve The Fall of Ole MissTo Birmingham Greenwood and Birmingham JailThe Children's Miracle Firestorm The March on Washington Crossing Over: Nightmares and Dreams
I've Got the Light of Freedom: The Organizing Tradition and the Mississippi Freedom Struggle, With a New Preface
Charles M. Payne - 1995
This momentous work offers a groundbreaking history of the early civil rights movement in the South with new material that situates the book in the context of subsequent movement literature.
American Apartheid: Segregation and the Making of the Underclass
Douglas S. Massey - 1993
It goes on to show that, despite the Fair Housing Act of 1968, segregation is perpetuated today through an interlocking set of individual actions, institutional practices, and governmental policies. In some urban areas the degree of black segregation is so intense and occurs in so many dimensions simultaneously that it amounts to "hypersegregation."The authors demonstrate that this systematic segregation of African Americans leads inexorably to the creation of underclass communities during periods of economic downturn. Under conditions of extreme segregation, any increase in the overall rate of black poverty yields a marked increase in the geographic concentration of indigence and the deterioration of social and economic conditions in black communities.As ghetto residents adapt to this increasingly harsh environment under a climate of racial isolation, they evolve attitudes, behaviors, and practices that further marginalize their neighborhoods and undermine their chances of success in mainstream American society. This book is a sober challenge to those who argue that race is of declining significance in the United States today.
Walking with the Wind: A Memoir of the Movement
John Lewis - 1998
The son of an Alabama sharecropper, and now a sixth-term United States Congressman, John Lewis has led an extraordinary life, one that found him at the epicenter of the civil rights movement in the late '50s and '60s. As Chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), Lewis was present at all the major battlefields of the movement. Arrested more than forty times and severely beaten on several occasions, he was one of the youngest yet most courageous leaders. Written with charm, warmth, and honesty, Walking with the Wind offers rare insight into the movement and the personalities of all the civil rights leaders-what was happening behind the scenes, the infighting, struggles, and triumphs. Lewis takes us from the Nashville lunch counter sit-ins to the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, where he led more than five hundred marchers on what became known as "Bloody Sunday." While there have been exceptional books on the movement, there has never been a front-line account by a man like John Lewis. A true American hero, his story is "destined to become a classic in civil rights literature." (Los Angeles Times)
Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II
Douglas A. Blackmon - 2008
Blackmon brings to light one of the most shameful chapters in American history—an “Age of Neoslavery” that thrived from the aftermath of the Civil War through the dawn of World War II.Under laws enacted specifically to intimidate blacks, tens of thousands of African Americans were arbitrarily arrested, hit with outrageous fines, and charged for the costs of their own arrests. With no means to pay these ostensible “debts,” prisoners were sold as forced laborers to coal mines, lumber camps, brickyards, railroads, quarries, and farm plantations. Thousands of other African Americans were simply seized by southern landowners and compelled into years of involuntary servitude. Government officials leased falsely imprisoned blacks to small-town entrepreneurs, provincial farmers, and dozens of corporations—including U.S. Steel—looking for cheap and abundant labor. Armies of “free” black men labored without compensation, were repeatedly bought and sold, and were forced through beatings and physical torture to do the bidding of white masters for decades after the official abolition of American slavery.The neoslavery system exploited legal loopholes and federal policies that discouraged prosecution of whites for continuing to hold black workers against their wills. As it poured millions of dollars into southern government treasuries, the new slavery also became a key instrument in the terrorization of African Americans seeking full participation in the U.S. political system.Based on a vast record of original documents and personal narratives, Slavery by Another Name 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. It also reveals the stories of those who fought unsuccessfully against the re-emergence of human labor trafficking, the modern companies that profited most from neoslavery, and the system’s final demise in the 1940s, partly due to fears of enemy propaganda about American racial abuse at the beginning of World War II.Slavery by Another Name is a moving, sobering account of a little-known crime against African Americans, and the insidious legacy of racism that reverberates today.
At the Dark End of the Street: Black Women, Rape, and Resistance--A New History of the Civil Rights Movement from Rosa Parks to the Rise of Black Power
Danielle L. McGuire - 2010
Rosa Parks was often described as a sweet and reticent elderly woman whose tired feet caused her to defy segregation on Montgomery’s city buses, and whose supposedly solitary, spontaneous act sparked the 1955 bus boycott that gave birth to the civil rights movement. The truth of who Rosa Parks was and what really lay beneath the 1955 boycott is far different from anything previously written. In this important book, Danielle McGuire writes about the rape in 1944 of a twenty-four-year-old mother and sharecropper, Recy Taylor, who strolled toward home after an evening of singing and praying at the Rock Hill Holiness Church in Abbeville, Alabama. Seven white men, armed with knives and shotguns, ordered the young woman into their green Chevrolet, raped her, and left her for dead. The president of the local NAACP branch office sent his best investigator and organizer—Rosa Parks—to Abbeville. In taking on this case, Parks launched a movement that exposed a ritualized history of sexual assault against black women and added fire to the growing call for change.