ABC-CLIO Solutions

The African American Experience

The American Mosaic

by Marian Perales, Spencer R. Crew, Andrew Jackson, and Joe E. Watkins, Editors

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ABC-CLIO Solutions

Topics Race and Ethnicity/African American Studies
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    978-1-59884-549-5

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An education in American history would not be complete without an understanding of African American history and its relation to that of the greater U.S. The contributions of African Americans to American history are many, comprising those of individuals from the black community who have achieved success in politics, sports, business, the arts and sciences, and the military, but also those of nameless others who endured the travails of slavery and institutionalized discrimination.

The African American Experience: The American Mosaic provides a comprehensive survey of African American history and its heartbreaking struggles, major movements—political, social, artistic, and literary—and most notable events and legislative reform. Featuring articles and essays from African American authors and contributors, it gives voice to the experience of African Americans from their arrival in the Americas through to the present day, including the influence of the black community on popular culture and the aspirations of African Americans as expressed, for example, through the campaign of hope on which Barack Obama ran in 2008.

Highlights

  • Houses nearly 8,000 primary and secondary sources, including overview essays, slave narratives, speeches, court cases, and quotations, that embody themes of literature, music, the arts, slavery, the struggle for civil rights, education, sports, science, medicine, folklore, and more
  • Includes nearly 1,000 biographies of such famous political and social figures as W.E.B. DuBois, Barack Obama, Frederick Douglass, and Mary McLeod Bethune as well as such fascinating contemporary figures as Amiri Baraka, Muhammad Ali, Drake, and Oprah Winfrey
  • Asks questions that encourage students to think about African American history as it relates to the present, such as “Are there different perceptions of professional black athletes as compared to their white counterparts?” and “Are we living in a post-racial society?”
  • Features the CLIOview tool that allows students to make comparisons between African American demographics and to graph statistical data in categories such as voter registration, household income, and more
  • Makes connections to literary classics including Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, Mark Twain’s Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
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Offering effective technology for your library and created specifically for middle and high school students, ABC-CLIO Solutions Schools Edition provides authoritative coverage of essential topics in U.S. history and government, world history, geography, and a range of multicultural and popular culture subjects.

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A DEEP COLLECTION OF MODEL COMMENTARIES from noted scholars that have been specially commissioned to foster critical thinking stimulated by exposure to varying points of view.

AN EDUCATOR SUPPORT CENTER containing valuable professional development tools as well as relevant resources such as discussion points, activities, lesson plans, and research lists.

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Advisory Board

Marian Perales is the Managing Editor for the American History, African American Experience, American Indian Experience, and Latino American Experience databases. She received her BA from Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo and her MA from The Claremont Graduate University. She completed doctoral coursework at Claremont Graduate University specializing in Chicano/a history, U.S. religious history, and 19th century U.S. intellectual history. She has written articles on the western women's history and Chicana history.

Spencer R. Crew, PhD is Clarence J. Robinson Professor of History at George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia. He received his PhD in history from Rutgers University. He has worked in public history for more than 25 years and served as president of the National Underground Railroad and Freedom Center and worked at the National Museum of American History-Smithsonian for 20 years. He is the past chair of the National Council for History Education and serves on the board of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. His publications include Field to Factory: Afro-American Migration 1915–1940 (1987), and Black Life in Secondary Cities: A Comparative Analysis of the Black Communities of Camden and Elizabeth, N.J. 1860–1920 (1993). He co-authored The American Presidency: A Glorious Burden (2002) and Unchained Memories: Readings From The Slave Narratives (2002) and co-editor of Slave Culture: A Documentary Collection of the Slave Narratives from the Federal Writers Project (Greenwood, 2014) and Memories of the Enslaved: Voices from the Slave Narratives (Praeger, 2015).

Andrew Jackson recently retired from Queens Library’s Langston Hughes Community Library and Cultural Center as Director-Emeritus after 36 years of dedicated service. He earned a Master of Library Science from Queens College-GSLIS (CUNY) and a BS in Business Administration from York College (CUNY) and is a Certified NYS Public Librarian. In recognition of his commitment to Black history and culture, Andrew was given five African names: (Sekou-Warrior, Molefi-He keeps tradition, Baako-First born, Bhekizizwe-Take care of your people and Orbai-Teacher). Andrew is an Adjunct Professor at Queens College’s Graduate School of Library and Information Studies (CUNY) and an adjunct in the York College (CUNY) History & Philosophy Departments Black Studies Program.

He served on the boards of Time Warner Cable NY, Elmhurst Hospital Center and The Renaissance Charter School as well as advisory boards and committees at York College (CUNY), Queens College (CUNY), and the Louis Armstrong Museum and Archives. A published author and essayist, he co-edited the award winning book, The 21st Century Black Librarian in America: Issues and Challenges and Queens Notes: Facts About the Forgotten Borough of Queens, New York. One of his most popular essays, "In The Tradition: The Legacy of Cultural Messengers From Langston Hughes to Tupac Shakur" was published in the Black History Month Edition of Phat’itude Literary Magazine. He is currently working on a new book about Black librarianship.

Dr. Joe Watkins, a member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, is a Research Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of Maryland, College Park. From 2007–2013 he was the Director of the Native American Studies Program at the University of Oklahoma. He has more than 45 years of experience in anthropology and archaeology, working in the public and private sectors of cultural resources management, as a program administrator and professor in higher education, and as a private consultant. He serves as a mediator and advocate for indigenous groups worldwide, including North American Indians and First Nations, Australian Aboriginals, New Zealand Maori, and the Japanese Ainu. He is the author of Indigenous Archaeology: American Indian Values and Scientific Practice (Alta Mira Press 2000), Reclaiming Physical Heritage: Repatriation and Sacred Sites (Chelsea House Publishers 2005), and with Carol Ellick, The Anthropology Graduate's Guide: From Student to a Career (Left Coast Press 2011).

Topic Centers

  

Africa and the Atlantic, 500–1550
• Ancient African Civilizations, 500–1550
• Africa and the Atlantic World, 1441–1550
Rise of Jim Crow, 1877–1895
• Rebuilding the South, 1877–1905
• Westward Ho!, 1878–1890
• Violence and Jim Crow, 1880s–1895
Black Power Movement, 1965–1979
• Civil Rights Reignites, 1965–1968
• African Americans and the Vietnam Era, 1968–1973
• Backlash to Progress, 1973–1979
Africans in Colonial North America, 1550s–1760
• The English North American Colonies, 1619–1760
• The Spanish Colonies, 1560s–1760
The Progressive Era, 1895–1917
• Diverse Political Strategies, 1895–1915
• The Great Migration, 1910–1917
Urban Politics and the Shifting Landscape, 1979–1991
• New Leadership and Urban Change, 1979–1988
• Conservatism and the Politics of Power, 1988–1991
Hopes for a New Nation, 1763–1816
• The American Revolution, 1763–1787
• The Constitution, 1787–1800
• The Emergence of Free Black Communities, 1800–1816
World War I to the Great Depression, 1917–1939• World War I, 1917–1919
• The Harlem Renaissance, 1920–1939 • The Great Depression, 1929–1939
Dawning of a New Era, 1992–2000
• The Clinton Era and the Pulse of the New Day, 1992–1995
• Federal Policy Changes, 1995–1998
Antebellum, 1816–1846
• The Expansion of Slavery, 1816–1846
• Abolitionism and Reform, 1816–1846
World War II and Post–War Integration, 1939–1954
• World War II, 1939–1945
• The Cold War, 1945–1960
New Millennium, 2001–present
• New Leadership, 2001–2008
• Hope Comes Back to Life, 2008–present
Civil War and Emancipation, 1846–1877
• Prelude to War, 1846–1861
• The Civil War, 1861–1865
• Reconstruction, 1865–1877
Civil Rights Movement, 1954–1965
• New Forms of Protest, 1954–1957
• Struggles for Freedom, 1957–1960
• The Apex of the Civil Rights Movement, 1960–1965

Reviews/Endorsements

Reviews

"This is a comprehensive research database that provides reliable information on African American life, history, and culture. . . . Updated regularly with new content and multimedia this source will be useful to instructors looking for an interactive teaching and research tool in the area of African American history from its earliest times to the present."—ARBA

"This is a comprehensive research database that provides reliable information on African American life, history, and culture. Users can browse a wide range of subject areas, from 'Arts and Entertainment' and 'Business and Labor' to 'Sports' and 'Women.' The Resources section includes the following headings: title list, timeline, image index, primary source index, landmark documents, slave narratives, classic texts, and audio files. Altogether there are over 5,000 primary documents provided here, including manuscripts, speeches, court cases, and statistics, as well as a timeline that can be searched by century, decade, or keyword. Lesson plans are included that tie directly to the primary resources and other classroom resources. Content includes the history of blacks in American from the first arrival through the present day and includes some information on African origins. It is worthwhile for libraries at the high school and university level for both its historical and cultural content."—ARBA

"The African American Experience (AAE) is a compilation of more than 300 of the publisher's relevant print publications, including monographs, encyclopedias and dictionaries, and primary sources.... Content is very good. Thousands of biographical entries, probably AAE's strongest feature, cover earliest times to the twenty-first century and range in length from short paragraphs to encyclopedic treatment. But there are also topical entries in the areas of arts and literature, culture, history and politics, religion, sociology and more. The full text of letters and speeches from Kennedy, King, and others; audio files with songs and interviews of former slaves; and transcripts of thousands of slave narratives add immeasurably to our understanding of related encyclopedia entries.... The African American Experience is appropriate for libraries serving middle- and high-school through adult patrons. Content is very rich.' "—Booklist-Reference Books Bulletin

"I recently reviewed the Oxford African American Studies Center (LJ 7/06). It merited an unprecedented 11 (out of ten) and was recommended for all libraries. AAE deserves a similar rating, within certain contexts. For school and public libraries, it's an 11 for its extraordinary combination of content and design. For academic libraries, it gets a 10 … Frankly, it would be a boon if the two files were combined, but I'd serve them up the Greenwood way. ...The Bottom Line: The African American Experience is enthusiastically recommended for school and public libraries and strongly recommended for academic institutions.' "—Library Journal

"This database provides a unique opportunity for students to easily investigate and explore the rich history and heritage of African American culture. ... Greenwood's African American Experience (AAE) database provides students with a clean, yet jazzy-looking home page that displays an easy-to-access list of contents to begin browsing. ...

"Students will find the AAE easy to use and informative for quick access to general topics of interest and as a primary source for research of in-depth subjects ranging from slavery to music, from business to politics. With a wide range of informational content and additional resources provided on the sides or each results page, students will easily locate not only the information that they need, but also perhaps information that they were not aware of until now.

"Teachers will be amazed at the specialized lesson plans that utilize the content of the database to creatively provide opportunities for instruction in either the high school or college classroom. ...

"Librarians will find that the AAE ‘drips’ with educational content for students and teachers at both the high school and the college levels. With information not generally found in most reference collections, this database is comparable to only a few specialized databases, and at a price that could not be reproduced by collection the individual resources.

"With school libraries in mind, Greenwood's African American Experience deserves an A+ for providing not only a uniquely specialized database filled with exceptional content but also quality resources to help teachers develop unique and thought-provoking lessons. ... This database paves the way for great opportunities in cultural studies at both the high school and college levels."—School Library Journal

"Both databases are intended for a wide audience, ranging from the middle-school student to teachers and researchers. Which to choose if your library can't afford both? Apart from the relative merits of (and your preferences for) the core encyclopedias on which they are based, The African American Experience offers a more impressive array of different kinds of data, and it also has a more well-developed classroom area.' "—Booklist-Reference Books Bulletin

"African American Experience (AAE) is a compilation of more than 300 of the publisher's relevant print publications, including monographs, encyclopedias and dictionaries, and primary sources....Content is very good. Thousands of biographical entries, probably AAE's strongest feature, cover earliest times to the twenty-first century and range in length from short paragraphs to encyclopedic treatment. But there are also topical entries in the areas of arts and literature, culture, history and politics, religion, sociology and more. The full text of letters and speeches from Kennedy, King, and others; audio files with songs and interviews of former slaves; and transcripts of thousands of slave narratives add immeasurably to our understanding of related encyclopedia entries....African American Experience is appropriate for libraries serving middle- and high-school through adult patrons. Content is very rich."—Booklist/Reference Books Bulletin

"With a wealth of searchable slave narratives, over 1800+ images, 200+ vetted web links, and 4,500 primary documents-all within a single resource-this database provides a unique opportunity for students to easily investigate and explore the rich history and heritage of African American culture....Alongside the depth of information provided within the database, African American Experience also contains over 88 lesson plans compiled by education and subject experts. These lessons integrate primary documents, introductory essays, and other background materials into easy-to-use and thought-provoking classroom activities for high school students....Greenwood's African American Experience deserves an A+ for providing not only a uniquely specialized database filled with exceptional content but also quality resources to help teachers develop unique and thought-provoking lessons."—School Library Journal

"This comprehensive, in-depth web resource presents an uncluttered, easy-to-use, and appealing online research database....Designed for users in high school through adult, the intuitive interface and lack of advertising and clutter make this database a valuable curriculum support especially for those schools with a strong Black-American curriculum. Recommended."—Library Media Connection

"The design of this outstanding database covering African American life and culture sets a new standard in electronic publishing for attractive accessibility. Highly recommended for school and public libraries for its extraordinary combination of content and design."—Library Journal Best Reference 2006

"This comprehensive, in-depth research database is a valuable curriculum support for the high school user."—Library Media Connection Editor's Choice

"The inviting home screen offers both simple and advanced searches, a very sophisticated browse function, immediate access to a clearly identified set of primary source materials, the entire contents list, access to classroom resources, and very useful online help. Quick Search is where it should be: near screen top, on the left. There's an option for Advanced Search, but even better, there's the list of 15 Subjects ready for Browsing. The bonus here is the expanding menus that pop up as you mouse over the Subjects: they constitute an outline both of the database and of research topics....[t]he Primary Documents section was truly enthralling, including Antebellum Songs of the Underground Railroad, the text of The Black Man's Burden (1915) by William H. Holtzclaw and Booker T. Washington, the 1998 edition of African American Quotations , and recorded interviews of former slaves from the 1930s and 1940s....For school and public libraries, it's an 11 for its extraordinary combination of content and design. For academic libraries, it gets a 10-still outstanding but with not quite as much in-depth research content as the Oxford product. Frankly, it would be a boon if the two files were combined, but I'd serve them up the Greenwood way....The African American Experience is enthusiastically recommended for school and public libraries and strongly recommended for academic institutions."—Library Journal

"[I]mpressively provides access in full or part to over 200 Greenwood reference and monographic titles relating to African American culture and history; it also includes 67 Negro University Press classic texts, the WPA slave narratives, and other primary documents....The strongest subject content is in history, literature, music, folklore, politics, civil rights, criminal justice, and biography. Quotations, images, audio files, and teacher lesson plans are available for many topics. The library subject specialists and university professors composing the advisory board have vast experience with African American reference materials and primary documents....The AAE database is reasonably priced for its coverage and would be useful for all academic libraries. Recommended. All levels."—Choice

Awards

2012 Best Educational Software Award (BESSIE) — ComputEd Gazette

Library Media Connection Editor's Choice Library Journal 2006 Best Reference

2012 Education Software Review Award (EDDiE) — ComputEd Gazette

2014 Best Educational Software Award (BESSIE) — ComputEd Gazette

2017 Best African American History Website — ComputED Best Educational Software Awards (BESSIES)

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Other Titles of Interest

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United States Geography cover imageIssues cover imageDaily Life through History cover image

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