Discovering Black America: From the Age of Exploration to the Twenty-First Century

Overview


Discovering Black America offers readers an unprecedented account of more than 400 years of African American history set against a background of American and global events. The book begins with a black sailor aboard the Niña with Christopher Columbus and continues through the colonial period, slavery, the Civil War, Jim Crow, and civil rights to our current president in the White House. Including first-person narratives from diaries and journals, interviews, and archival images, Discovering Black America will ...
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Overview


Discovering Black America offers readers an unprecedented account of more than 400 years of African American history set against a background of American and global events. The book begins with a black sailor aboard the Niña with Christopher Columbus and continues through the colonial period, slavery, the Civil War, Jim Crow, and civil rights to our current president in the White House. Including first-person narratives from diaries and journals, interviews, and archival images, Discovering Black America will give readers an intimate understanding of this extensive history. The book includes an index and bibliography.

Praise for Discovering Black America
STARRED REVIEWS
"This handsome, engaging study of African-American history brings to light many intriguing and tragically underreported stories...From attractive page design to an afterword that encourages readers to search for their own history, there has been much attention to detail in this handsome volume."
Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"Reproductions of historical documents, photographs, and artwork provide a sense of immediacy to this immersive tapestry, which reaches well beyond the milestones typically outlined in history books."
Publishers Weekly, starred review

"This attractive volume is an epic work...Absolutely gorgeous in design, with a harmonious marriage of text and colorful archival images, this is the kind of book that invites browsing, and its extensive reach will make this a go-to title for report writers."
School Library Journal

"This handsome historical overview begins with the first African explorers and seamen arriving in the New World in the fifteenth century, and it ends with the presidential election of Barack Obama..The extensive back matter includes meticulous footnotes and a bibliography of recommended books and websites for all those who will be moved to find out more. An excellent title for classroom support."
Booklist

"The author provides a detailed overview that is thoroughly researched and documented, making this an outstanding resource for students. The primary source documents, photographs, and archival maps that complement this compelling account will engage readers...This book will undoubtedly prove to be useful for research and browsing alike.”
Library Media Connection, highly recommended

Award
Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People 2013

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Journalist Tarrant-Reid offers a comprehensive and well-designed history of black Americans, beginning with an examination of early black explorers and the roots of slavery, and concluding with the inauguration of Barack Obama. Throughout, Tarrant- Reid maintains an engagingly personal voice, profiling such prominent individuals as Phillis Wheatley, Booker T. Washington, and Malcolm X, as well as noting those swept up in the wave of history (a section on the American Revolution devotes space to blacks who fought on both sides, and a two-page spread gathers black inventors). Chapters examine the Civil War, Reconstruction, and Jim Crow eras, followed by a focus on 20th-century social, political, and artistic movements. Reproductions of historical documents, photographs, and artwork provide a sense of immediacy to this immersive tapestry, which reaches well beyond the milestones typically outlined in history books. With expressive details, such as firsthand accounts from the 1961 Mississippi Freedom Riders, and pop culture references (including the lyrics to Marvin Gaye’s 1971 song “What’s Going On”), it’s a book that will inspire readers to think more broadly and deeply about the African-American experience. Ages 10–up. (Sept.)
School Library Journal
Gr 6 Up—While not intended as "an exhaustive review of African American history," this attractive volume is an epic work. Starting with the first Africans to come to the New World, Tarrant-Reid follows the history up to the election of Barack Obama. Highlights include profiles of early black explorers, a look at the roots of slavery, a fascinating account of the philosophical differences between Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. Du Bois, and the little-known correspondences between Martin Luther King, Jr., and Malcolm X. Absolutely gorgeous in design, with a harmonious marriage of text and colorful archival images, this is the kind of book that invites browsing, and its extensive reach will make this a go-to title for report writers. The author stays remarkably unbiased throughout; in fact, it is this apparent strength that, at times, becomes an issue. Great nonfiction creates a relationship between young readers and subjects; a title that mines similar territory, Kadir Nelson's award-winning Heart and Soul (HarperCollins, 2011), brings African American history to life through the colorful narrative of a grandmotherlike Everywoman. Tarrant-Reid's impartial tone, on the other hand, at times gives way to long sections of relatively lifeless prose. The author is an authority on African American culture, having previously written several books on the subject, but this particular title, while strong in several areas, is not without its flaws.—Sam Bloom, Groesbeck Branch Library, Cincinnati, OH
Kirkus Reviews
This handsome, engaging study of African-American history brings to light many intriguing and tragically underreported stories. This is a comprehensive approach to African-American history, beginning with accounts of black explorers before the settlement of North America. The straightforward narrative includes major historical events but places emphasis on unusual aspects. For example, during the segment on the American Revolution, there is good discussion about those who fought for both the Patriots and the Loyalists. Another section of distinction is the period following the Civil War and Reconstruction, including blacks in the West and an intriguing look at the differing views of Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. DuBois. The societal changes brought on by World War II and the civil rights movement receive their due. Little-known exchanges between Malcolm X and Martin Luther King are the kinds of detail that lift this narrative above the standard history text. Not surprisingly, the story concludes with the election of President Barack Obama and the challenges facing the first black president. This is a well-researched, readable overview with an attractive layout that will engage young readers. There are few pages that are not accompanied by an interesting sidebar or image, many archival. From attractive page design to an afterword that encourages readers to search for their own history, there has been much attention to detail in this handsome volume. (notes, bibliography, art credits, index) (Nonfiction. 10 & up)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780810970984
  • Publisher: Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
  • Publication date: 9/1/2012
  • Edition description: 1
  • Pages: 244
  • Sales rank: 1,428,790
  • Age range: 10 - 14 Years
  • Lexile: 1370L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.60 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Linda Tarrant-Reid has worked as a freelance journalist, writing on the history of African Americans for the New York Daily News. She is also a communications specialist for school districts and is the author of several books for adults. She lives in New Rochelle, New York.

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