U.s. - Political and Civil Rights of Blacks
A. Philip Randolph, Pioneer
A. Philip Randolph, Pioneer
Paperback      ISBN: 0807120758

Scholars of the civil rights movement and twentieth-century African American history traditionally refer to Asa Philip Randolph as the organizer of the first all-black labor union, the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters. Paula Pfeffer's aim in this detailed and insightful biography, however, is "to demonstrate that Randolph's ideologies and strategies provided the blueprint for the civil rights movement that emerged in the late 1950s and early 1960s."

Randolph's efforts were essential to the formation of the first Fair Employment Practices Committee and the integration of the armed services in the 1940s. He organized many effective protests--sit-ins, the 1957 Prayer Pilgrimage, and two Youth Marches for Integrated Schools--to preserve African American integrity while seeking racial parity. The 1963 March on Washington--for which Randolph was an organizing force--was a renewal of his attempted March on Washington of 1941.-- "Journal of Southern History"
The Abolitionist Legacy: From Reconstruction to the NAACP
The Abolitionist Legacy
From Reconstruction to the NAACP
2nd Edition    Paperback      ISBN: 069110039x

Building on arguments presented in The Struggle for Equality, James McPherson shows that many abolitionists did not retreat from Reconstruction, as historical accounts frequently lead us to believe, but instead vigorously continued the battle for black rights long after the Civil War. Tracing the activities of nearly 300 abolitionists and their descendants, he reveals that some played a crucial role in the establishment of schools and colleges for southern blacks, while others formed the vanguard of liberals who founded the NAACP in 1910. The author's examination of the complex and unhappy fate of Reconstruction clarifies the uneasy partnership of northern and southern white liberals after 1870, the tensions between black activists and white neo-abolitionists, the evolution of resistance to racist ideologies, and the origins of the NAACP.

-- "The Times Literary Supplement"
The Accident of Color: A Story of Race in Reconstruction
The Accident of Color
A Story of Race in Reconstruction
Hardcover      ISBN: 0393247449

In The Accident of Color, Daniel Brook journeys to nineteenth-century New Orleans and Charleston and introduces us to cosmopolitan residents who elude the racial categories the rest of America takes for granted. Before the Civil War, these free, openly mixed-race urbanites enjoyed some rights of citizenship and the privileges of wealth and social status. But after Emancipation, as former slaves move to assert their rights, the black-white binary that rules the rest of the nation begins to intrude. During Reconstruction, a movement arises as mixed-race elites make common cause with the formerly enslaved and allies at the fringes of whiteness in a bid to achieve political and social equality for all.

In some areas, this coalition proved remarkably successful. Activists peacefully integrated the streetcars of Charleston and New Orleans for decades and, for a time, even the New Orleans public schools and the University of South Carolina were educating students of all backgrounds side by side. Tragically, the achievements of this movement were ultimately swept away by a violent political backlash and expunged from the history books, culminating in the Jim Crow laws that would legalize segregation for a half century and usher in the binary racial regime that rules us to this day.

The Accident of Color revisits a crucial inflection point in American history. By returning to the birth of our nation's singularly narrow racial system, which was forged in the crucible of opposition to civil rights, Brook illuminates the origins of the racial lies we live by.

Across That Bridge: A Vision for Change and the Future of America
Across That Bridge
A Vision for Change and the Future of America
Paperback      ISBN: 0316510939

Winner of the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work/Biography.

In Across That Bridge, Congressman John Lewis draws from his experience as a prominent leader of the Civil Rights Movement to offer timeless wisdom, poignant recollections, and powerful principles for anyone interested in challenging injustices and inspiring real change toward a freer, more peaceful society.
The Civil Rights Movement gave rise to the protest culture we know today, and the experiences of leaders like Congressman Lewis, a close confidant to Martin Luther King, Jr., have never been more relevant. Despite more than forty arrests, physical attacks, and serious injuries, John Lewis has remained a devoted advocate of the discipline and philosophy of nonviolence. Now, in an era in which the protest culture he helped forge has resurfaced as a force for change, Lewis' insights have never been more relevant. In this heartfelt book, Lewis explores the contributions that each generation must make to achieve change.

An Act of State: The Execution of Martin Luther King
An Act of State
The Execution of Martin Luther King
Paperback      ISBN: 1786635976
The definitive account of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s assassination

On April 4, 1968, Martin Luther King was in Memphis to support a workers' strike. As night fell, army snipers took up position; military officers surveilled the scene from a nearby roof; and their accomplice, restaurant-owner Loyd Jowers, was ready to remove the murder weapon. When the dust had settled, King had been shot and a cleanup operation was in motion--James Earl Ray was framed, the crime scene was destroyed, and witnesses were killed. It would take William F. Pepper, attorney and friend of King, thirty years to get to the bottom of a conspiracy that changed the course of American history. In 1999, the King family, represented by the author, brought a civil action lawsuit against Loyd Jowers and other co-conspirators. Seventy witnesses set out the details of a plot that involved J. Edgar Hoover and the FBI, Richard Helms and the CIA, the US military, the Memphis police, and organized crime. The jury took an hour to find for the King family.

Now fifty years after MLK's execution, An Act of State demonstrates the bloody depths to which the US government will descend to repress a movement for change.

An African American and Latinx History of the United States
An African American and Latinx History of the United States
Paperback      ISBN: 0807005932
An intersectional history of the shared struggle for African American and Latinx civil rights

Spanning more than two hundred years, An African American and Latinx History of the United States is a revolutionary, politically charged narrative history, arguing that the "Global South" was crucial to the development of America as we know it. Scholar and activist Paul Ortiz challenges the notion of westward progress as exalted by widely taught formulations like "manifest destiny" and "Jacksonian democracy," and shows how placing African American, Latinx, and Indigenous voices unapologetically front and center transforms US history into one of the working class organizing against imperialism.

Drawing on rich narratives and primary source documents, Ortiz links racial segregation in the Southwest and the rise and violent fall of a powerful tradition of Mexican labor organizing in the twentieth century, to May 1, 2006, known as International Workers' Day, when migrant laborers--Chicana/os, Afrocubanos, and immigrants from every continent on earth--united in resistance on the first "Day Without Immigrants." As African American civil rights activists fought Jim Crow laws and Mexican labor organizers warred against the suffocating grip of capitalism, Black and Spanish-language newspapers, abolitionists, and Latin American revolutionaries coalesced around movements built between people from the United States and people from Central America and the Caribbean. In stark contrast to the resurgence of "America First" rhetoric, Black and Latinx intellectuals and organizers today have historically urged the United States to build bridges of solidarity with the nations of the Americas.

Incisive and timely, this bottom-up history, told from the interconnected vantage points of Latinx and African Americans, reveals the radically different ways that people of the diaspora have addressed issues still plaguing the United States today, and it offers a way forward in the continued struggle for universal civil rights.

2018 Winner of the PEN Oakland/Josephine Miles Literary Award
African American Culture and Legal Discourse
African American Culture and Legal Discourse
1st Edition    Hardcover      ISBN: 0230619886

This work examines the experiences of African Americans under the law and how African American culture has fostered a rich tradition of legal criticism. Moving between novels, music, and visual culture, the essays present race as a significant factor within legal discourse. Essays examine rights and sovereignty, violence and the law, and cultural ownership through the lens of African American culture. The volume argues that law must understand the effects of particular decisions and doctrines on African American life and culture and explores the ways in which African American cultural production has been largely centered on a critique of law.

African American Intellectual-Activists: Legacies in the Struggle
African American Intellectual-Activists
Legacies in the Struggle
Hardcover      ISBN: 0815329210

This study examines the narrated life experiences of 11 African American intellectual-activists. An intellectual-activist is defined as a person whose education has provided him or her with a body of knowledge to which he/she is continually adding (intellectual self) and who works daily for, or has a career dedicated to, the betterment of African American people (activist self). The voices of the subjects focus on the events in their lives that contributed to their development as intellectuals and activists.

Discussions of the individuals' backgrounds illuminate the forces that influenced their life experiences and guided their actions toward involvement with the struggle to improve the lives of the African American community. The overarching theme in these life stories is the possession of a positive African American self-concept. The study explores the ways in which the subjects developed this positive self-concept, how this self-concept influenced the goals of their activism, and how they define progress toward these goals.

African Americans and Civil Rights: From 1619 to the Present
African Americans and Civil Rights
From 1619 to the Present
Hardcover      ISBN: 089774859x

This well-written narrative, concise but packed with history, chronicles the struggle for African American civil rights. Beginning in 1619 when the first ship carrying Africans arrived in North America and continuing to the present, historian Michael L. Levine gives readers a balanced overview of how U.S. laws have prevented blacks from having the same civil rights as others. The text is accompanied by 65 detailed biographical sketches that describe the roles played by key individuals who worked to advance--or block--the civil rights of African Americans.

African Americans and the First Amendment: The Case for Liberty and Equality
African Americans and the First Amendment
The Case for Liberty and Equality
Hardcover      ISBN: 1438475810
African Americans and the First Amendment is the first book to explore in detail the relationship between African Americans and our "first freedoms," especially freedom of speech. Timothy C. Shiell utilizes an interdisciplinary approach to demonstrate that a strong commitment to civil liberty and to racial equality are mutually supportive, as they share an opposition to orthodoxy and a commitment to greater inclusion and participation. This crucial connection is evidenced throughout US history, from the days of colonial and antebellum slavery to Jim Crow: in the landmark US Supreme Court decision in 1937 freeing the black communist Angelo Herndon; in the struggles and victories of the civil rights movement, from the late 1930s to the late '60s; and in the historical and modern debates over hate speech restrictions. Liberty and equality can conflict in individual cases, Shiell argues, but there is no fundamental conflict between them. Robust First Amendment values protect and encourage demands for racial equality while weak First Amendment values, in contrast, lead to censorship and a chilling of demands for racial equality.