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African Americans Studies

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African Americans Studies is the study of the vital role African Americans played in the history and culture of America since its founding. An important part of this curriculum for African American Studies is devoted to creative research on the lives and work of prominent African Americans and to placing them within their cultural context.

Studying African American (Black) History is important because it will show how numerous African-Americans have contributed to the world cultures and to society over the years in various ways, specially the contributions that may go unnoticed or are unheard of.

Positive cultural identity can help in Motivation and Self-Esteem in Young African American Students and provide a means for many young African Americans from becoming victims to gang related issues. It can also provide a sense of self-worth and inspiration for building a better community and family.

African American Studies usually cover brief biographical sketches of several key figures in African American history.

Key figures in African American history

Benjamin Banneker 1731-1806

Benjamin Banneker (November 9, 1731 – October 9, 1806) was a free African American scientist, surveyor, almanac author and farmer. Born in Baltimore County, Maryland, to a free African American woman and a former slave, Banneker had little formal education and was largely self-taught. He is known for being part of a group led by Major Andrew Ellicott that surveyed the borders of the original District of Columbia, the federal capital district of the United States. - See More at: Wikipedia

Sojourner Truth 1797-1883

Sojourner Truth (/soʊˈdʒɜrnər ˈtruːθ/; c. 1797 – November 26, 1883) was the self-given name, from 1843 onward, of Isabella Baumfree, an African-American abolitionist and women's rights activist. Truth was born into slavery in Swartekill, Ulster County, New York, but escaped with her infant daughter to freedom in 1826. After going to court to recover her son, she became the first black woman to win such a case against a white man. Her best-known extemporaneous speech on gender inequalities, "Ain't I a Woman?", was delivered in 1851 at the Ohio Women's Rights Convention in Akron, Ohio. During the Civil War, Truth helped recruit black troops for the Union Army; after the war, she tried unsuccessfully to secure land grants from the federal government for former slaves. - See More at: Wikipedia

Harriet Jacobs 1813-1897

Harriet Ann Jacobs (February 11, 1813 – March 7, 1897) was an African-American writer who escaped from slavery and became an abolitionist speaker and reformer. Jacobs' single work, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, published in 1861 under the pseudonym Linda Brent, was one of the first autobiographical narratives about the struggle for freedom by female slaves and an account of the sexual harassment and abuse they endured. - See More at: Wikipedia

 

Alexander Crummell 1819-1898

Alexander Crummell (March 3, 1819 – September 10, 1898) was a pioneering African-American priest, professor and African nationalist. Ordained as an Episcopal priest in the United States, he went to England in the late 1840s to raise money for his church by lecturing about American slavery. Abolitionists supported his three years of study at Cambridge. He developed concepts of pan-Africanism. - See More at: Wikipedia

Harriet Tubman 1821-1913

Harriet Tubman (born Araminta Harriet Ross; 1820 – March 10, 1913) was an African-American abolitionist, humanitarian, and Union spy during the American Civil War. Born into slavery, Tubman escaped and subsequently made more than nineteen missions to rescue more than 300 slaves using the network of antislavery activists and safe houses known as the Underground Railroad. She later helped John Brown recruit men for his raid on Harpers Ferry, and in the post-war era struggled for women's suffrage. - See More at: Wikipedia

Booker T. Washington 1856-1915

Booker Taliaferro Washington (April 5, 1856 – November 14, 1915) was an African-American educator, author, orator, and advisor to presidents of the United States. Between 1890 and 1915, Washington was the dominant leader in the African-American community.

Washington was of the last generation of black American leaders born into slavery, who became the leading voice of the disfranchised former slaves newly oppressed by the discriminatory laws enacted in the post reconstruction Southern states in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In 1895 his Atlanta compromise called for avoiding confrontation over segregation and instead putting more reliance on long-term educational and economic advancement in the black community. - See More at: Wikipedia

George Washington Carver 1860-1943

George Washington Carver (by January 1864 – January 5, 1943), was an American scientist, botanist, educator, and inventor. The exact day and year of his birth are unknown; he is believed to have been born into slavery in Missouri in January 1864.

Carver's reputation is based on his research into and promotion of alternative crops to cotton, such as peanuts, soybeans and sweet potatoes, which also aided nutrition for farm families. He wanted poor farmers to grow alternative crops both as a source of their own food and as a source of other products to improve their quality of life. The most popular of his 44 practical bulletins for farmers contained 105 food recipes using peanuts. He also developed and promoted about 100 products made from peanuts that were useful for the house and farm, including cosmetics, dyes, paints, plastics, gasoline, and nitroglycerin. He received numerous honors for his work, including the Spingarn Medal of the NAACP. - See More at: Wikipedia

Ida Wells-Barnett 1862-1931

Ida Bell Wells-Barnett (July 16, 1862 – March 25, 1931) was an African-American journalist, newspaper editor, suffragist, sociologist and, with her husband, newspaper owner Ferdinand L. Barnett, an early leader in the civil rights movement. She documented lynching in the United States, showing how it was often a way to control or punish blacks who competed with whites. She was active in the women's rights and the women's suffrage movement, establishing several notable women's organizations. Wells was a skilled and persuasive rhetorician, and traveled internationally on lecture tours. - See More at: Wikipedia

W.E.B. Du Bois 1868-1963

William Edward Burghardt "W. E. B." Du Bois (pronounced /duːˈbɔɪz/ doo-BOYZ; February 23, 1868 – August 27, 1963) was an American sociologist, historian, civil rights activist, Pan-Africanist, author and editor. Born in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, Du Bois grew up in a relatively tolerant and integrated community. After graduating from Harvard, where he was the first African American to earn a doctorate, he became a professor of history, sociology and economics at Atlanta University. Du Bois was one of the co-founders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in 1909. - See More at: Wikipedia

Mary McLeod Bethune 1875-1955

Mary Jane McLeod Bethune (July 10, 1875 – May 18, 1955) was an American educator and civil rights leader best known for starting a school for African-American students in Daytona Beach, Florida, that eventually became Bethune-Cookman University and for being an advisor to President Franklin D. Roosevelt. - See More at: Wikipedia

Jessie Fauset 1882-1961

Jessie Redmon Fauset (April 27, 1882 – April 30, 1961) was an American editor, poet, essayist and novelist.

Fauset was the editor of the NAACP magazine The Crisis. She also was the editor and co-author for the African American children's magazine Brownies' Book. She studied the teachings and beliefs of W.E.B Dubois and considered him to be her mentor. Fauset was known as one of the most intelligent women novelists of the Harlem Renaissance, earning her the name "the midwife". In her lifetime she wrote four novels as well as poetry and short fiction. - See More at: Wikipedia

Zora Neale Hurston 1891-1960

Zora Neale Hurston (January 7, 1891 – January 28, 1960) was an American folklorist, anthropologist, and author during the time of the Harlem Renaissance. Of Hurston's four novels and more than 50 published short stories, plays, and essays, she is best known for her 1937 novel Their Eyes Were Watching God. - See More at: Wikipedia

E. Franklin Frazier 1894-1962

Edward Franklin Frazier (September 24, 1894 - May 17, 1962), was an American sociologist. His 1932 Ph.D. dissertation The Negro Family in Chicago, later released as a book The Negro Family in the United States in 1939, analyzed the cultural and historical forces that influenced the development of the African-American family from the time of slavery. The book was awarded the 1940 Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for the most significant work in the field of race relations. This book was among the first sociological works on blacks researched and written by a black person. He helped draft the UNESCO statement The Race Question in 1950. - See More at: Wikipedia

James Langston Hughes 1902-1967

James Mercer Langston Hughes (February 1, 1902 – May 22, 1967) was an American poet, social activist, novelist, playwright, and columnist. He was one of the earliest innovators of the then-new literary art form jazz poetry. Hughes is best known as a leader of the Harlem Renaissance. He famously wrote about the period that "the negro was in vogue" which was later paraphrased as "when Harlem was in vogue". - See More at: Wikipedia

Charles Drew 1904-1950

Charles Richard Drew (June 3,1904 –April 1,1950) was an American physician, surgeon, and medical researcher. He researched in the field of blood transfusions, developing improved techniques for blood storage, and applied his expert knowledge to developing large-scale blood banks early in World War II. This allowed medics to save thousands of lives of the Allied forces. The research and development aspect of his blood storage work is disputed. As the most prominent African-American in the field, Drew protested against the practice of racial segregation in the donation of blood, as it lacked scientific foundation, an action which cost him his job. - See More at: Wikipedia

Margaret Walker -Born 1915

Margaret Walker (Margaret Abigail Walker Alexander by marriage) (July 7, 1915 in Birmingham, Alabama,– November 30, 1998) was American poet and writer. She was part of the African-American literary movement in Chicago. Her works include the award-winning poem For My People and the novel Jubilee. - See More at: Wikipedia

Malcolm X 1925-1965

Malcolm X (/ˈmælkəm ˈɛks/; May 19, 1925 – February 21, 1965), born Malcolm Little and also known as El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz (Arabic: الحاجّ مالك الشباز‎), was an African-American Muslim minister and human rights activist. To his admirers, he was a courageous advocate for the rights of blacks, a man who indicted white America in the harshest terms for its crimes against black Americans. Detractors accused him of preaching racism, black supremacy, and violence. He has been called one of the greatest and most influential African Americans in history. - See More at: Wikipedia

Martin Luther King, Jr. 1929-1968

Martin Luther King, Jr. (January 15, 1929 – April 4, 1968) was an American clergyman, activist, and leader in the African-American Civil Rights Movement. He is best known for his role in the advancement of civil rights using nonviolent civil disobedience. King has become a national icon in the history of American progressivism.

A Baptist minister, King became a civil rights activist early in his career. He led the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott and helped found the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) in 1957, serving as its first president. With the SCLC, King led an unsuccessful struggle against segregation in Albany, Georgia, in 1962, and organized nonviolent protests in Birmingham, Alabama, that attracted national attention following television news coverage of the brutal police response. King also helped to organize the 1963 March on Washington, where he delivered his "I Have a Dream" speech. There, he established his reputation as one of the greatest orators in American history. He also established his reputation as a radical, and became an object of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's COINTELPRO for the rest of his life. FBI agents investigated him for possible communist ties, recorded his extramarital liaisons and reported on them to government officials, and on one occasion, mailed King a threatening anonymous letter that he interpreted as an attempt to make him commit suicide. - See More at: Wikipedia

Lorraine Hansberry 1930-1965

Lorraine Vivian Hansberry (May 19, 1930[2] – January 12, 1965) was an American playwright and writer. Her best known work, the play A Raisin in the Sun, was inspired by her family's battle against racial segregation in Chicago.

Lorraine Hansberry was the youngest of four children of Carl Augustus Hansberry, a successful real-estate broker, and Nannie Louise Perry who was a school teacher. In 1938, her father bought a house in the Washington Park Subdivision of the South Side of Chicago, violating a restrictive covenant and incurring the wrath of many neighbors. The latter's legal efforts to force the Hansberrys out culminated in the U.S. Supreme Court's 1940 decision in Hansberry v. Lee holding the restrictive covenant in the case contestable, though not inherently invalid. - See More at: Wikipedia

Colin Powell -Born 1937

Colin Luther Powell (/ˈkoʊlɨn/; born April 5, 1937) is an American statesman and a retired four-star general in the United States Army. He was the 65th United States Secretary of State, serving under U.S. President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2005, the first African American to serve in that position. During his military career, Powell also served as National Security Advisor (1987–1989), as Commander of the U.S. Army Forces Command (1989) and as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1989–1993), holding the latter position during the Persian Gulf War. He was the first, and so far the only, African American to serve on the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and was the first of two consecutive African American office-holders to hold the key Administration position of U.S. Secretary of State. - See More at: Wikipedia

Charlayne Hunter-Gault - Born 1942

Charlayne Hunter-Gault (born 27 February 1942) is an American journalist and former foreign correspondent for National Public Radio, and the Public Broadcasting Service.

In 1961, Athens, Georgia witnessed part of the civil rights movement when Charlayne Hunter and Hamilton Holmes became the first two African-American students to enroll in the University of Georgia. She graduated in 1963. - See More at: Wikipedia

August Wilson -Born 1945

August Wilson (April 27, 1945 – October 2, 2005) was an American playwright whose work included a series of ten plays, The Pittsburgh Cycle, for which he received two Pulitzer Prizes for Drama. Each is set in a different decade, depicting the comic and tragic aspects of the African-American experience in the twentieth century. - See More at: Wikipedia

Carole Moseley-Braun -Born 1947

Carol Elizabeth Moseley Braun, also sometimes Moseley-Braun, (born August 16, 1947) is an American politician and lawyer who represented Illinois in the United States Senate from 1993 to 1999. She was the first and only African-American woman elected to the United States Senate, the first African American U.S. Senator for the Democratic Party, the first woman to defeat an incumbent U.S. Senator in an election, and the first and only female Senator from Illinois. From 1999 until 2001, she was the United States Ambassador to New Zealand. She was a candidate for the Democratic nomination during the 2004 U.S. presidential election. Following the public announcement by Richard M. Daley that he would not seek re-election, in November 2010, Braun began her campaign for Mayor of Chicago. The former Senator placed fourth in a field of six candidates, losing the February 22, 2011 election to Rahm Emanuel. - See More at: Wikipedia

Cynthia A. McKinney - Born 1955

Cynthia Ann McKinney (born March 17, 1955) is an American politician and activist. As a member of the Democratic Party, she served six terms in the United States House of Representatives. In 2008, the Green Party of the United States nominated McKinney for President of the United States. She was the first African-American woman to represent Georgia in the House.

In the 1992 election, McKinney was elected in the newly re-created 11th District, and was re-elected in 1994. When her district was redrawn and renumbered due to the Supreme Court of the United States ruling in Miller v. Johnson, McKinney was easily elected from the new 4th District in the 1996 election, and was re-elected twice without substantive opposition. - See More at: Wikipedia

 

 

The African American Experiences is a collection of Black Studies to understand the Past, Present and Future of the People called African American!

"Wealth is to have your own Land, Language and Culture! Where is the Land of the African American? What is the Language? And, Where is the Culture of the people?"

 

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