100 Greatest African Americans: A Biographical Encyclopedia

100 Greatest African Americans: A Biographical Encyclopedia

by Molefi Kete Asante


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Since 1619, when Africans first came ashore in the swampy Chesapeake region of Virginia, there have been many individuals whose achievements or strength of character in the face of monumental hardships have called attention to the genius of the African American people. This book attempts to distill from many wonderful possibilities the 100 most outstanding examples of greatness. Pioneering scholar of African American Studies Molefi Kete Asante has used four criteria in his selection: the individual's significance in the general progress of African Americans toward full equality in the American social and political system; self-sacrifice and the demonstration of risk for the collective good; unusual will and determination in the face of the greatest danger or against the most stubborn odds; and personal achievement that reveals the best qualities of the African American people. In adopting these criteria Professor Asante has sought to steer away from the usual standards of popular culture, which often elevates the most popular, the wealthiest, or the most photogenic to the cult of celebrity. The individuals in this book - examples of lasting greatness as opposed to the ephemeral glare of celebrity fame - come from four centuries of African American history.

Each entry includes brief biographical information, relevant dates, an assessment of the individual's place in African American history with particular reference to a historical timeline, and a discussion of his or her unique impact on American society. Numerous pictures and illustrations will accompany the articles. This superb reference work will complement any library and be of special interest to students and scholars of American and African American history.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781573929639
Publisher: Prometheus Books
Publication date: 03/01/2003
Pages: 350
Product dimensions: 6.26(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.91(d)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Molefi Kete Asante (Philadelphia, PA), the creator of the first doctoral program in African American Studies, is professor of African American Studies at Temple University and the author of more than 50 books, including Erasing Racism: The Survival of the American Nation and Race, Rhetoric, and Identity: The Architecton of Soul.

Table of Contents

Hank Aaron23
Ira Aldridge25
Muhammad Ali27
Richard Allen31
Marian Anderson34
Maya Angelou37
Arthur Ashe39
Crispus Attucks41
James Baldwin44
Benjamin Banneker48
Amiri Baraka51
Romare Bearden54
Mary McLeod Bethune57
Guion Bluford61
Arna Bontemps62
Edward W. Brooke64
Gwendolyn Brooks66
Blanche K. Bruce69
Ralph Bunche72
George Washington Carver75
Shirley Chisholm78
Kenneth B. Clark81
John Henrik Clarke84
John Coltrane87
Bill Cosby92
Alexander Crummell94
Countee Cullen97
Benjamin O. Davis Jr.100
Martin R. Delany103
Frederick Douglass106
Charles Drew111
W. E. B. Du Bois114
Paul Laurence Dunbar118
Katherine Dunham120
Duke Ellington123
James Forten126
John Hope Franklin128
Henry Highland Garnet131
Marcus Garvey134
Prince Hall141
Fannie Lou Hamer146
Lorraine Hansberry150
Dorothy Height153
Matthew Henson155
Charles Houston157
Langston Hughes160
Zora Neale Hurston165
Jesse Jackson168
Mae Jemison172
Jack Johnson174
James Weldon Johnson177
John H. Johnson181
Percy Julian184
Ernest Just187
Maulana Karenga190
Martin Luther King Jr.194
Edmonia Lewis201
Alain Locke203
Joe Louis207
Thurgood Marshall210
Benjamin E. Mays215
Elijah McCoy217
Claude McKay219
Oscar Micheaux224
Dorie Miller227
Garrett Morgan230
Toni Morrison232
Elijah Muhammad235
Jesse Owens238
Rosa Parks242
Adam Clayton Powell246
Colin Powell250
A. Philip Randolph255
Hiram Revels259
Paul Robeson261
Jackie Robinson264
John Russwurm268
Arturo Schomburg270
Benjamin "Pop" Singleton272
Mary Church Terrell275
William Monroe Trotter279
Sojourner Truth284
Harriet Tubman289
Kwame Ture293
Henry McNeal Turner296
Nat Turner299
David Walker301
Madame C. J. Walker304
Booker T. Washington307
Ida B. Wells-Barnett309
Phillis Wheatley312
Walter F. White315
Roy Wilkins317
Daniel Hale Williams318
August Wilson320
Oprah Winfrey322
Tiger Woods324
Carter G. Woodson327
Richard Wright330
Malcolm X333

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