Envisioning Black Colleges: A History of the United Negro College Fund

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Overview

Etched into America's consciousness is the United Negro College Fund's phrase "A mind is a terrible thing to waste." This book tells the multifaceted story of the organization's efforts on behalf of black colleges against the backdrop of the cold war and the civil rights movement.

Founded during the post–World War II period as a successor to white philanthropic efforts, the UNCF nevertheless retained vestiges of outside control. In its early years, the organization was restrained in its critique of segregation and reluctant to lodge a challenge against institutional and cultural racism. Through cogent analysis of written and oral histories, archival documents, and the group's outreach and advertising campaigns, historian Marybeth Gasman examines the UNCF’s struggle to create an identity apart from white benefactors and to evolve into a vehicle for black empowerment.

The first history of the UNCF, Envisioning Black Colleges draws attention to the significance of black colleges in higher education and the role they played in Americans’ struggle for equality.

Johns Hopkins University Press

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Editorial Reviews

Review of Higher Education
An invaluable contribution to the general area of the history of higher education.

— Philo A. Hutcheson

Teachers College Record
A vivid and comprehensive account of the history of the United Negro College Fund (UNCF).

— Dwayne Ashley

Philadelphia Tribune
Reveals the multifaceted story of the organization's effort on behalf of black colleges.

— Bobbi Booker

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly
Gasman is to be admired for being bold enough to examine the 'double consciousness' that existed for both Blacks and Whites in leading and supporting UNCF.

— Pier C. Rogers

Diverse Issues in Higher Education
A thoughtful, incisive history of the UNCF.

— Alvin J. Schexnider

Journal of American History
A solid basis for continued consideration of the intersections of race, philanthropy, and higher education.

— Jean Preer

NEA Higher Education Journal
Envisioning Black Colleges is a worthy addition to the larger field of philanthropic history, and it brings new depth to the study of the history of African American higher education in the US.

— Jana Nidiffer

Register of the Kentucky Historical Society
Marybeth Gasman has provided an excellent study of the United Negro College Fund (UNCF).

— Antonio F. Holland

History of Education
Professor Gasman fills an important and neglected gap in the history of black higher education and its ongoing relationship with philanthropy in the mid- to late twentieth century.

— Thomas O'Brien

Oral History Review
Gasman's book is a very informative history of the founding and the evolution of the UNCF during the period examined. Her use of visual images from UNCF campaign advertisements is powerful, underscoring their strong symbolism reflective of the times and each story deftly told.

— Caroline S. V. Turner

Teachers College Record - Dwayne Ashley

A vivid and comprehensive account of the history of the United Negro College Fund (UNCF).

Philadelphia Tribune - Bobbi Booker

Reveals the multifaceted story of the organization's effort on behalf of black colleges.

Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly - Pier C. Rogers

Gasman is to be admired for being bold enough to examine the 'double consciousness' that existed for both Blacks and Whites in leading and supporting UNCF.

Diverse Issues in Higher Education - Alvin J. Schexnider

A thoughtful, incisive history of the UNCF.

Journal of American History - Jean Preer

A solid basis for continued consideration of the intersections of race, philanthropy, and higher education.

Review of Higher Education - Philo A. Hutcheson

An invaluable contribution to the general area of the history of higher education.

NEA Higher Education Journal - Jana Nidiffer

Envisioning Black Colleges is a worthy addition to the larger field of philanthropic history, and it brings new depth to the study of the history of African American higher education in the US.

Register of the Kentucky Historical Society - Antonio F. Holland

Marybeth Gasman has provided an excellent study of the United Negro College Fund (UNCF).

History of Education - Thomas O'Brien

Professor Gasman fills an important and neglected gap in the history of black higher education and its ongoing relationship with philanthropy in the mid- to late twentieth century.

Oral History Review - Caroline S. V. Turner

Gasman's book is a very informative history of the founding and the evolution of the UNCF during the period examined. Her use of visual images from UNCF campaign advertisements is powerful, underscoring their strong symbolism reflective of the times and each story deftly told.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801886041
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
  • Publication date: 5/4/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 813,038
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.93 (d)

Meet the Author

Marybeth Gasman is an assistant professor at the University of Pennsylvania's Graduate School of Education and author (with Patrick J. Gilpin) of Charles S. Johnson: Leadership beyond the Veil in the Age of Jim Crow.

Johns Hopkins University Press

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