|Books by Black authors and scholars.|
Keep Learning About Black History With These 23 Vital Books
Black History Month might be ending, but learning about black history never should.
By Claire Fallon
The shortest month of the year is coming to a close, and with it, the country's yearly celebration of Black History Month. The presidential speeches have been declaimed, and the flurry of media inquiry into black achievements throughout American history is subsiding. But the end of February need not ― and should not ― be the end of learning about the history of black people.
The history of black Americans contains immense oppression and suffering, all too often papered over by white-dominated educational systems. It also contains great artistic, scientific and social achievements, for which black creators are often given little credit. With the rich history of African-Americans often ignored save for one short month each year, it's no wonder many never learn much more than George Washington Carver's peanut-based achievements.
So why not commit to learning about black history all year round? Here are 23 books, worth reading in any season, that dive deeper into major moments in black history:
Isabel Wilkerson shines a light on the human stories behind the mass movement
of black people in the rural South to Northern, Eastern and Western cities after 1915.
|Simon and Schuster|
An inside look at the Civil Rights Movement, from one of its most prominent figures
This economic history argues that the evolution of American capitalism was deeply intertwined with slave labor, and documents the inhuman cruelties of the domestic slave trade and productivity pushes that allowed the cotton trade to burgeon in the South.
Family Properties explores an oft-forgotten historical injustice: redlining, a practice by which federal agencies denied mortgage insurance to buyers in black or integrated areas. Redlining rapidly drove segregation and left black families prey to exploitative sellers. Beryl Satter, whose father battled these injustices as a Chicago lawyer, paints both a personal and a sweeping portrait of the phenomenon.
A portrait of a legendary Supreme Court justice as a lawyer, Devil in the Grove catches up with Thurgood Marshall shortly before he brought the seminal Brown v Board of Education suit The book focuses on Marshalls defense of four young black men in Florida targeted by prosecutors and the KKK after a young white woman made rape allegations.
Ibram X. Kendi examines how racist ideas were spread throughout American history in this sweeping, award-winning history of thought. Bonus: He recently published a reading list for The New York Times, consisting of 24 books he describes as "the most influential books on race and the black experience published in the United States for each decade of the nation's existence."
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
A detailed history of an influential Chicago-based newspaper that gave voice to the black community, The Defender traces the publication from its founding in 1905 to its role in speaking out about Jim Crow to its profound impact on politics in the middle of the century.
What other books about black history should everyone be adding to their must-read lists? Add your own recommendation in the comments.
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