In honor of Black History Month, we’re highlighting books in our “African-American and African Studies” category. Whether you’re interested in civil rights, slam poetry, policy issues, music, or how these intersect with a variety of other topics, you can find it all here.
Use the code UMBHM17 for 30% off any of our 140 AAAS books. This offer is good on hardcovers, paperbacks, and ebooks, and can be used as many times as you want, until March 1st, 2017.
The 1960s, including the black social movements of the period, are an obstacle to understanding the current conditions of African Americans, argues Clarence Lang. While Americans celebrate the current anniversaries of various black freedom milestones and the election of the first black president, the effects of neoliberalism since the 1970s have been particularly devastating to African Americans. Neoliberalism, which rejects social welfare protections in favor of individual liberty, unfettered markets, and a laissez-faire national state, has produced an environment in which people of color struggle with unstable employment, declining family income, rising household debt, increased class stratification, and heightened racial terrorism and imprisonment.
In the United States at midcentury—a time of few opportunities for women in general and even fewer for African American women—Jackie Ormes (1911-85) blazed a trail as a popular cartoonist with the major black newspapers of the day. Jackie Ormes chronicles the life of this multiply talented, fascinating woman.
Edited by Liam Kennedy and Stephen Shapiro
Few other television series have received as much academic, media, and fan celebration as The Wire, which has been called the best dramatic series ever created. The show depicts the conflict between Baltimore’s police and criminals to raise a warning about race; drug war policing; deindustrialization; and the inadequacies of America’s civic, educational, and political institutions. The show’s unflinching explorations of a city in crisis and its nuanced portrayals of those affected make it a show all about race and class in America.
In 1901, George Ward, a lynching victim, was attacked, murdered, and dismembered by a mob of white men, women, and children. As his lifeless body burned in a fire, enterprising white youth cut off his toes and, later, his fingers and sold them as souvenirs. In Embodying Black Experience, Harvey Young masterfully blends biography, archival history, performance theory, and phenomenology to relay the experiences of black men and women who, like Ward, were profoundly affected by the spectacular intrusion of racial violence within their lives.
Susan B. A. Somers-Willett
The cultural phenomenon known as slam poetry was born some twenty years ago in white working-class Chicago barrooms. Since then, the raucous competitions have spread internationally, launching a number of annual tournaments, inspiring a generation of young poets, and spawning a commercial empire in which poetry and hip-hop merge.