Long Time No See: A memoir of fathers, daughters and games of chance

Posted in Autobiography, Books, Caribbean/Latin America, Media Archive, Novels, United Kingdom on 2015-07-28 15:02Z by Steven

Long Time No See: A memoir of fathers, daughters and games of chance

Periscope
2015-07-24
336 pages
204mm x 138mm
Paperback ISBN: 9781859643969

Hannah Lowe

Hannah Lowe’s father “Chick”, a half-Chinese, half-black Jamaican immigrant, worked long hours at night to support his family – except Chick was no ordinary working man. A legendary gambler, he would vanish into the shadows of East London to win at cards or dice, returning during the daylight hours to greet the daughter whose love and respect he courted.

In this poignant memoir, Lowe calls forth the unstable world of card sharps, confidence men and small-time criminals that eventually took its toll on Chick. She also evokes her father’s Jamaica, where he learned his formidable skills, and her own coming of age in a changing Britain.

Long Time No See speaks eloquently of love and its absence, regret and compassion, and the struggle to know oneself.

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The Book of Colors: A Novel

Posted in Books, Novels, United States on 2015-07-27 18:23Z by Steven

The Book of Colors: A Novel

Unbridled Books
280 pages
May 2015
5 1/2 x 8 1/4
ISBN: 978-1-60953-115-7
EISBN: 978-1-60953-116-4

Raymond Barfield, Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Christian Philosophy
Duke Divinity School, Durham, North Carolina

How can a 19-year-old, mixed-race girl who grew up in a crack house and is now pregnant be so innocent? Yslea is full of contradictions, though, seeming both young and old, innocent and wise. Her spirit is surprising, given all the pain she has endured, and that’s the counterpoint this story offers—while she sees pain and suffering all around her, Yslea overcomes in her own quiet way.

What Yslea struggles with is expressing her thoughts. And she wonders if she will have something of substance to say to her baby. It’s the baby growing inside her that begins to wake her up, that causes her to start thinking about things in a different way.

Yslea drifts into the lives of four people who occupy three dilapidated row houses along the train tracks outside of Memphis: “The way their three little row houses sort of leaned in toward each other and the way the paint peeled and some of the windows were covered with cardboard, the row might as easily have been empty.”

She becomes an integral part of this little community, moving in with Rose who is old and dying. As her pregnancy progresses, everything changes within the three houses.

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Our Nig; or, Sketches from the Life of a Free Black

Posted in Autobiography, Books, Media Archive, Monographs, United States, Women on 2015-07-23 02:13Z by Steven

Our Nig; or, Sketches from the Life of a Free Black

Penguin Press
2009 (First published in 1859)
176 pages
Paperback ISBN: 9780143105763
Ebook ISBN: 9781440649141

Harriet E. Wilson (1825-1900)

Introduction and Notes by:

P. Gabrielle Foreman, Ned B. Allen Professor of English
University of Delaware

Reginald Pitts

For the 150th anniversary of its first publication, a new edition of the pioneering African-American classic, reflecting groundbreaking discoveries about its author’s life

First published in 1859, Our Nig is an autobiographical narrative that stands as one of the most important accounts of the life of a black woman in the antebellum North. In the story of Frado, a spirited black girl who is abused and overworked as the indentured servant to a New England family, Harriet E. Wilson tells a heartbreaking story about the resilience of the human spirit. This edition incorporates new research showing that Wilson was not only a pioneering African-American literary figure but also an entrepreneur in the black women’s hair care market fifty years before Madame C. J. Walker’s hair care empire made her the country’s first woman millionaire.

Read the book at Project Gutenberg here.

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Houston Bound: Culture and Color in a Jim Crow City

Posted in Anthropology, Books, Forthcoming Media, History, Latino Studies, Monographs, Texas, United States on 2015-07-20 01:23Z by Steven

Houston Bound: Culture and Color in a Jim Crow City

University of California Press
November 2015
320 pages
Hardback ISBN: 9780520282575
Paperback ISBN: 9780520282582

Tyina Steptoe, Assistant Professor of History
University of Arizona

Beginning after World War I and continuing throughout the twentieth century, Houston was transformed from a black-and-white frontier town into one of the most ethnically and racially diverse urban areas in the United States. Houston Bound draws on social and cultural history to show how, despite Anglo attempts to fix racial categories through Jim Crow laws, converging migrations—particularly those of Mexicans and Creoles—complicated ideas of blackness and whiteness and introduced different understandings about race. This migration history is also a story about music and sound, tracing the emergence of Houston’s blues and jazz scenes in the 1920s as well as the hybrid forms of these genres—like zydeco and Tejano soul—that arose when migrants forged shared social space and carved out new communities and politics. Houston’s location on the Gulf Coast, poised between the American South and the West, yields a particularly rich examination of how the histories of colonization, slavery, and segregation produced divergent ways of thinking about race.

This interdisciplinary book provides both an innovative historiography about migration and immigration in the twentieth century and a critical examination of a city located in the former Confederacy.

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The Adoption Papers

Posted in Autobiography, Books, Poetry, United Kingdom on 2015-07-20 00:59Z by Steven

The Adoption Papers

Bloodaxe Books
1991
64 pages
Paperback ISBN: 978-1852241568
21.6 x 13.9 x 0.5 cm

Jackie Kay, Professor of Creative Writing
Newcastle University

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My Name is Cool: Stories from a Cuban-Irish-American Storyteller

Posted in Autobiography, Books, Media Archive, Novels, United States on 2015-07-17 18:46Z by Steven

My Name is Cool: Stories from a Cuban-Irish-American Storyteller

Familius
2013-08-05
170 pages
Paperback ISBN: 9781938301568
eBook ISBN: 9781939629029

Antonio Sacre

“In 1960 my father got into a rowboat from Havana, Cuba and rowed 90 miles to the United States to start his new life. By the time I got into seventh grade, I was telling my friends that my father saved all of his family, all of his friends, piled everyone into that boat and rowed everybody over to America. By the time I got into high school, I was telling my friends that my father stole five boats from Castro’s navy, saved all of his friends, all of his family, all of his first, second, third, fourth, and fifth cousins, everyone on his block, all of the pets, and everybody on his baseball team. He piled them into the boat. There was no room for him in the boat, so he tied those boats together with a big rope, put that rope around his shoulders and he swam everybody over to the United States. . .”

Born in Boston to a Cuban father and an Irish-American mother, Antonio Sacre is one of the few leprecanos on the national speaking circuit. Using his own personal history and telling the stories that audiences across the nation have found so captivating and wonderful, this award-winning storyteller and author weaves the Spanish language, Cuban and Mexican customs, and Irish humor into an unforgettable book of humor, inspiration, tradition, and family.

My Name is Cool is a classic story sure to transcend, like the author himself, cultures and boundaries.

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Loren Miller: Civil Rights Attorney and Journalist

Posted in Biography, Books, Forthcoming Media, Law, Monographs, United States on 2015-07-13 17:45Z by Steven

Loren Miller: Civil Rights Attorney and Journalist

University of Oklahoma Press
September 2015
304 pages
6.125″ x 9.25″
Hardcover ISBN: 9780806149165

Amina Hassan, Consultant & Researcher
The Azara Group, New York, New York

Loren Miller was one of the nation’s most prominent civil rights attorneys from the 1940s through the early 1960s, particularly in the fields of housing and education. With co-counsel Thurgood Marshall, he argued two landmark civil rights cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, whose decisions effectively abolished racially restrictive housing covenants. One of these cases, Shelley v. Kraemer (1948), is taught in nearly every American law school today. Loren Miller: Civil Rights Attorney and Journalist recovers this remarkable figure from the margins of history and for the first time fully reveals his life for what it was: an extraordinary American story and a critical chapter in the annals of racial justice.

Born the son of a former slave and a white midwesterner in 1903, Loren Miller lived the quintessential American success story, both by rising from rural poverty to a position of power and influence and by blazing his own path. Author Amina Hassan reveals Miller as a fearless critic of the powerful and an ardent debater whose acid wit was known to burn “holes in the toughest skin and eat right through double-talk, hypocrisy, and posturing.”

As a freshly minted member of the bar who preferred political activism and writing to the law, Miller set out for Los Angeles from Kansas in 1929. Hassan describes his early career as a fiery radical journalist, as well as his ownership of the California Eagle, one of the longest-running African American newspapers in the West. In his work with the California branch of the ACLU, Miller sought to halt the internment of West Coast Japanese citizens, helped integrate the U.S. military and the L.A. Fire Department, and defended Black Muslims arrested in a deadly street battle with the LAPD. Hassan charts Miller’s ceaseless commitment to improving the lives of Americans regardless of their race or ethnicity. In 1964, Governor Edmund G. Brown appointed Miller as a Municipal Court justice for Los Angeles County.

The story told here in full for the first time is of a true American original who defied societal limitations to reshape the racial and political landscape of twentieth-century America.

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The Fight for Interracial Marriage Rights in Antebellum Massachusetts

Posted in Books, History, Law, Media Archive, Monographs, United States on 2015-07-13 02:00Z by Steven

The Fight for Interracial Marriage Rights in Antebellum Massachusetts

Harvard University Press
April 2015
288 pages
6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches
11 halftones
Hardcover ISBN: 9780674967625

Amber D. Moulton, Researcher
Unitarian Universalist Service Committee

Well known as an abolitionist stronghold before the Civil War, Massachusetts had taken steps to eliminate slavery as early as the 1780s. Nevertheless, a powerful racial caste system still held sway, reinforced by a law prohibiting “amalgamation”—marriage between whites and blacks. The Fight for Interracial Marriage Rights in Antebellum Massachusetts chronicles a grassroots movement to overturn the state’s ban on interracial unions. Assembling information from court and church records, family histories, and popular literature, Amber D. Moulton recreates an unlikely collaboration of reformers who sought to rectify what, in the eyes of the state’s antislavery constituency, appeared to be an indefensible injustice.

Initially, activists argued that the ban provided a legal foundation for white supremacy in Massachusetts. But laws that enforced racial hierarchy remained popular even in Northern states, and the movement gained little traction. To attract broader support, the reformers recalibrated their arguments along moral lines, insisting that the prohibition on interracial unions weakened the basis of all marriage, by encouraging promiscuity, prostitution, and illegitimacy. Through trial and error, reform leaders shaped an appeal that ultimately drew in Garrisonian abolitionists, equal rights activists, antislavery evangelicals, moral reformers, and Yankee legislators, all working to legalize interracial marriage.

This pre–Civil War effort to overturn Massachusetts’ antimiscegenation law was not a political aberration but a crucial chapter in the deep history of the African American struggle for equal rights, on a continuum with the civil rights movement over a century later.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • 1. Amalgamation and the Massachusetts Ban on Interracial Marriage
  • 2. Interracial Marriage as an Equal Rights Measure
  • 3. Moral Reform and the Protection of Northern Motherhood
  • 4. Anti-Southern Politics and Interracial Marriage Rights
  • 5. Advancing Interracialism
  • Epilogue
  • Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Acknowledgments
  • Index
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Pets, Playmates, Pedagogues (From Chapter Four of Oreo)

Posted in Articles, Books, Chapter, Media Archive, Religion, United States on 2015-07-10 17:30Z by Steven

Pets, Playmates, Pedagogues (From Chapter Four of Oreo)

The Offing: A Los Angeles Review of Books Channel
2015-07-06

Fran Ross

Oreo, Fran Ross’s ground-breaking satire, was originally published in 1974. It is being re-issued this week by New Directions, with an introduction by Danzy Senna and a foreword by Harryette Mullen. Mat Johnson of NPR called it “one of the funniest books I have ever read” and writer Paul Beatty deemed it “hilarious.” We are honored to present an excerpt of this extraordinary novel.

— The Fiction Editors

Christine and Jimmie C.

From the Jewish side of the family Christine inherited kinky hair and dark, thin skin (she was about a 7 on the color scale and touchy). From the black side of her family she inherited sharp features, rhythm, and thin skin (she was touchy). Two years after this book ends, she would be the ideal beauty of legend and folklore — name the nationality, specify the ethnic group. Whatever your legends and folklore bring to mind for beauty of face and form, she would be it, honey. Christine was no ordinary child. She was born with a caul, which her first lusty cries rent in eight. Aside from her precocity at mirror writing, she had her mother’s love of words, their nuance and cadence, their juice and pith, their variety and precision, their rock and wry. When told at an early age that she would one day have to seek out her father to learn the secret of her birth, she said, “I am going to find that motherfucker.” In her view, the last word was merely le mot juste

Read the entire chapter here.

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In the Shadow of Race: Growing Up As A Multiethnic, Multicultural, and “multiracial” American

Posted in Autobiography, Books, Media Archive, Monographs, United States on 2015-07-10 15:29Z by Steven

In the Shadow of Race: Growing Up As A Multiethnic, Multicultural, and “multiracial” American

Routledge
1998
280 pages
Paperback ISBN: 978-0805825756

Teja Arboleda, President/Creative Director
Entertaining Diversity, Inc.

My father’s father was Filipino-Chinese…
My father’s mother was African American-Native American…
My mother’s father was German-Danish…
My mother’s mother was German…
I was born in Brooklyn, New York, but I grew up in Japan…

For once it’s not just black and white. In this compelling chronicle of his journey through life as a multicultural and multiethnic American, Teja Arboleda uniquely and personally challenges institutionalized notions of race, culture, ethnicity, and class. Arboleda has presented his story around the United States through his one-man performance-lecture Ethnic Man! Now, in this book, he fleshes out the depth of his experience as a culturally and racially mixed American, illustrating throughout the enigma of cultural and racial identity and the American identity crisis.

To facilitate its use as a course text, In the Shadow of Race is offered with a Teacher’s Guide written by Christine Clark. Topics for discussion include:

  • the social construction of race
  • racial separatism vs. diversity
  • racial, ethnic, and cultural identity development
  • the politics of racial categorization
  • mixed “race” peoples
  • cultural identity vs. identity by heritage
  • the concept of a “cultural home
  • changing identities within cultures

Contents:

  • Preface
  • Chapter 1: Race Is a Four Letter Word
  • Chapter 2: Among the Trees
  • Chapter 3: Four Walls and a Cellar
  • Chapter 4: Checkmate
  • Chapter 5: Carrots?
  • Chapter 6: Plastic Armies
  • Chapter 7: Old Fence, New Paint
  • Chapter 8: Paper Houses, Horses, and Swords
  • Chapter 9: Squares in a Circle
  • Chapter 10: Shuffle
  • Chapter 11: The Connection
  • Chapter 12: The Adjustable Pedestal
  • Chapter 13: Hokkaido
  • Chapter 14: Two Steps Back
  • Chapter 15: The Official Proxy
  • Chapter 16: “You’re From China, Right?”
  • Chapter 17: The Awakening
  • Chapter 18: This Land Is Your Land
  • Chapter 19: Top of the Hill
  • Chapter 20: Letting Go
  • Chapter 21: Check One Only
  • Chapter 22: Losses
  • Chapter 23: The Testimony
  • Chapter 24: One
  • Chapter 25: Cool Winds Return Home
  • Chapter 26: Home
  • About the Author
  • Ancilary Materials for Educators
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