An American Color: Race and Identity in New Orleans and the Atlantic World

Posted in Books, Forthcoming Media, History, Louisiana, Monographs, United States on 2021-08-02 14:52Z by Steven

An American Color: Race and Identity in New Orleans and the Atlantic World

University of Georgia Press
2022-01-15
272 pages
Trim size: 6.000in x 9.000in
Hardcover ISBN: 9-780-8203-6076-8
Paperback ISBN: 9-780-8203-6078-2

Andrew N. Wegmann, Associate Professor of History
Delta State University, Cleveland, Mississippi

For decades, scholars have conceived of the coastal city of New Orleans as a remarkable outlier, an exception to nearly every “rule” of accepted U.S. historiography. American only by adoption, New Orleans, in most studies, serves as a frontier town of the circum-Caribbean-a vestige of North America’s European colonial era along the southern coast of a foreign, northern, insular United States. Beneath that, too, many have argued, a complex algorithm of racial mixtures was at work well into the nineteenth century, a complexity of racial understanding and treatment that almost every scholar to date has claimed simply did not exist within the more “American” states further north and outside the bounds of the Caribbean’s bizarre socioracial influence.

The reality, as An American Color explains, is that on the surface, New Orleans did have a racial and social system that confounded the more prudent and established black-white binary at work in the social rhetoric of the British-descended states further north. But this was not unique, especially within the United States. As Andrew N. Wegmann argues, New Orleans is representative of a place with different words for the same practices found throughout the North American continent and the Atlantic world. From New Orleans to Charleston and Richmond, the social construction of race remained constant and Atlantic in nature, predicated on a complex, socially infused, multitier system of prescribed racial value that challenged and sometimes abandoned preordained definitions of “black” and “white” for an assortment of fluid but meaningful designations in between. New Orleans is thus an entry point for the study of color in an Atlantic United States.

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May We Meet in the Heavenly World: The Piety of Lemuel Haynes – Profiles in Reformed Spirituality (Anyabwile, ed.)

Posted in Books, Monographs, Religion, United States on 2021-08-02 00:53Z by Steven

May We Meet in the Heavenly World: The Piety of Lemuel Haynes – Profiles in Reformed Spirituality (Anyabwile, ed.)

Reformation Heritage Books
2009-06-01
128 pages
4.5 x 0.4 x 6.9 inches
Paperback ISBN: 9781601780652
Ebook ISBN: 9781601783486

Lemuel Haynes (1753-1833)

Edited and Introduced by:

Thabiti M. Anyabwile, Pastor
Anacostia River Church, Washington, D.C.

Through both the biographical essay and the selections from Lemuel Haynes’s writings, readers are sure to perceive an Edwardsian sense of spirituality that ever lived in view of eternity. Well acquainted with difficulties, suffering, and death, Haynes’s ministry was infused with the unfailing hope of heaven.

Table of Contents:

  1. The Life and Piety of Lemuel Haynes (1753-1833)
  2. The Gospel and Slave-Keeping
  3. The Necessity of Regeneration
  4. The Nature of Regeneration
  5. A Brief Sketch of a Tour into the State of Vermont
  6. The Character of a Spiritual Watchmen
  7. Meeting with God and Our people on the Day of Judgment
  8. How Eternity Affects Daily Ministry
  9. To Timothy Mather Cooley
  10. To Timothy Mather Cooley
  11. Reminders When a Faithful Minister Is Taken Away
  12. Ministers and Their Families before the Bar of Christ
  13. Government and Religion Stand Together
  14. To Timothy Mather Cooley
  15. True Greatness
  16. To Timothy Mather Cooley
  17. To Timothy Mather Cooley
  18. To Timothy Mather Cooley
  19. Confiding in God’s Government and the Use of Means
  20. Expect to Die Soon
  21. To Timothy Mather Cooley
  22. To Timothy Mather Cooley
  23. Love without Dissimulation
  24. The Gospel Ministry and Politics
  25. To Deacon Elihu Atkins
  26. Traveling into Another World
  27. Suffering and Glory
  28. To Deacon Elihu Atkins
  29. Make Haste to the Lord
  30. Externally Marked for Christ
  31. In the Hands of God
  32. Christ Is My All
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Lemuel Haynes

Posted in Biography, History, Media Archive, Religion, United States, Videos on 2021-08-01 22:53Z by Steven

Lemuel Haynes

Vermont History
Vermont Historical Society
Barre, VT
2019-10-03

Steve Perkins, Executive Director

Lemuel Haynes of Rutland, Vermont was an incredible Vermonter. Haynes, an African-American man, was a great writer, thinker, and minister. In 1785, he was one of the first, if not the first, African-Americans to be ordained into the Congregational Church in the whole United States and led a mostly white congregation for over 30 years.

Watch the video here.

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Historical Reformer – Lemuel Haynes

Posted in Articles, Biography, History, Media Archive, Religion, United States on 2021-08-01 22:39Z by Steven

Historical Reformer – Lemuel Haynes

Nations
2021-12-20

Thaddeus Tague

The First Black Pastor in American History

On April 19th, 1775 – war was coming to Lexington, Massachusetts. The 77 hastily armed colonists arrived first. The sun began to rise, and with it came the sound of a marching war machine. The militaristically-naked colonists gaped at the more than 700 redcoats that faced them, weapons drawn. A sneering British major had approached within shouting distance and yelled, “Throw down your arms! Ye villains, ye rebels.” Within moments, firing started on both sides. Eight colonists lay dead. The British force advanced and set fire to the town. As soon as they advanced beyond the town however, they were met with the veritable thousands of “minutemen” who had assembled nearby. Quickly deployed and burning to protect their freedom, the minutemen overwhelmed the British force. In the days after, thousands more men were recruited in the local region. One of these men was a newly freed slave named Lemuel Haynes. A passionate Christian and Calvanist, Lemuel helped fight and tend to the wounded during the subsequent engagements. Seeing the blood and combat on the following few days – he vowed in his heart that he would fight to extend freedom and liberty to all men and women in the new colonies

Read the entire article here.

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‘Spy In The House Of Race’: A Daughter Of Black, Chinese, And Jewish Parents On Belonging Everywhere And Nowhere

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Autobiography, Media Archive, United States on 2021-08-01 22:28Z by Steven

‘Spy In The House Of Race’: A Daughter Of Black, Chinese, And Jewish Parents On Belonging Everywhere And Nowhere

LAist
Southern California Public Radio
Pasadena, California
2021-05-14

Lili Nadja Barsha


Lili Barsha, left, as a child with her parents, Tony and Yen, and younger brother Jake.
(Courtesy of Lili Barsha)

I’m an American of African, Asian, European, and Native descent.

I’ve lived all over the world and have been taken for many things. I describe myself as multi-racial, Mixed in America, blended. I tend to reject the hyphen — I see it as a little plank that walks us off our citizen ship. By us, I mean we people of color other than white. I have too many planks to walk as a Black, white, red, yellow — therefore, tan — American.

I’m nobody’s All-American, a spy in the house of race.

Ethnicity shapes what I eat, what music I listen to, what I read, and who I keep as company. It defines culture, family, history, and aesthetics.

I am the bloom of my ancestors. A vessel filled with genetic memory. That, and memories of otherness. Here are some of them…

Read the entire article here.

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The Spectacle of Latinx Colorism

Posted in Articles, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2021-08-01 22:17Z by Steven

The Spectacle of Latinx Colorism

The New York Times
2021-07-30

Karla Cornejo Villavicencio


Tina Tona

This summer’s controversy over the underrepresentation of dark-skinned Afro-Latinos in “In the Heights,” the Hollywood adaptation of the Broadway musical, laid bare the cancer of colorism in Latinx communities in the United States. The reckoning was long overdue, a pain that goes back as long as our community has existed. And the mainstream media was enraptured. It created what I think of as the spectacle — el espectáculo. I haven’t seen as high a demand for Latinx voices since the Pulse shooting.

Latinidad” is the shared language, childhood references, music, food, inside jokes and idiosyncratic TV Spanglish among the Latinx in this country. It is the sameness that unites us no matter where we grow up, and no matter where our parents were from. But the idea of sameness can devastate as much as it can connect. An open wound in this world of Latinx has been the shame around darkness, our own and that of our family and neighbors and compatriots. According to media by us or for us, dark-skinned Afro-Latinos do not exist and if they do, they aren’t Latino. Not really

Read the entire essay here.

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J.P. Morgan’s personal librarian had two identities. It took two authors to tell her story.

Posted in Articles, Biography, Interviews, Media Archive, Passing, United States, Women on 2021-07-20 02:20Z by Steven

J.P. Morgan’s personal librarian had two identities. It took two authors to tell her story.

The Washington Post
2021-06-28

Natachi Onwuamaegbu


“The Personal Librarian” co-authors Heather Terrell, writing as Marie Benedict, and Victoria Christopher Murray. (Phil Atkins)

Historical fiction writer Heather Terrell (who also writes under the name Marie Benedict) was introduced to Belle da Costa Greene between bookshelves at New York’s Morgan Library over 20 years ago. The docent — whom she has tried to find since — told her about a Black woman who passed as White and worked as J.P. Morgan’s personal librarian in the early 1900s. Terrell wasn’t yet writing historical fiction about women — she was a lawyer — but the story lingered in the back of her head.

Once she read Black author Victoria Christopher Murray’s work two years ago, she knew she found the partner she was waiting for to tackle da Costa Greene’s story. To write about a Black woman who passed as non-Black with an author she had never met was a process, especially when the editing coincided with the murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer and a pandemic.

The Washington Post talked to Terrell and Murray about what it was like to work on “The Personal Librarian” when so much of the world was falling apart…

Read the entire interview here.

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Counterfactual Love Stories & Other Experiments

Posted in Books, Forthcoming Media, Novels, United States on 2021-07-17 02:34Z by Steven

Counterfactual Love Stories & Other Experiments

Noemi Press
2021-10-01
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-934819-97-5

Jackson Bliss

From fragmented ransom notes to hanging footnotes, contemporary fairy tales to coded text, interconnecting pieces of modal flash fiction to backwards fractal narratives about gradual blindness, transgressive listicles to how-to guides for performative wokeness, variable destinies in downtown Chicago to impossible dating applications, counterfactual relationships to the French translation of adolescence, the conceptual, language-driven short stories in Counterfactual Love Stories & Other Experiments are an exploration of not just mixed-race/hapa identity in Michigan (and the American Midwest), but also of the infinite ways in which stories can be told, challenged, celebrated, and subverted.

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J.P. Morgan’s librarian hid her race. A novel imagines the toll on her.

Posted in Articles, Biography, Book/Video Reviews, History, Media Archive, Passing, United States, Women on 2021-07-17 00:53Z by Steven

J.P. Morgan’s librarian hid her race. A novel imagines the toll on her.

The Christian Science Monitor
2021-06-29

Heller McAlpin, Correspondent


Library of Congress
Belle da Costa Greene, shown in 1929, curated rare books for mogul J.P. Morgan. She was the first director of the Morgan Library.

Some books leave you wondering why the author has chosen to tell this particular story, and why now. This is emphatically not the case with “The Personal Librarian,” a novel about the woman who helped shape the Morgan Library’s spectacular collection of rare books and art more than a century ago. It quickly becomes clear why two popular authors, Marie Benedict and Victoria Christopher Murray, have teamed up to tell this important, inspirational story.

Belle da Costa Greene’s success in the almost exclusively male world of art and rare book dealers was an unusual feat for a woman in the early 20th century. But what makes it even more extraordinary – and such rich material for historical fiction – is the secret she harbored throughout her long career: She hailed from a prominent, light-skinned Black family, many of whose members had chosen to pass as white.

“The Personal Librarian” reminds readers that this decision was not made lightly. After the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the Civil Rights Act in 1883 – a ruling that ushered in Jim Crow segregation and gave white supremacy and racial discrimination legal cover, the ramifications of which are felt to this day – few opportunities were open to anyone classified as nonwhite…

Read the entire book review here.

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The Personal Librarian, A Novel

Posted in Biography, Books, History, Media Archive, Monographs, Passing, United States, Women on 2021-07-17 00:36Z by Steven

The Personal Librarian, A Novel

Berkley (an imprint of Penguin Randomhouse)
2021-06-29
Hardcover ISBN: 9780593101537
Paperback ISBN: 9780593414248
Eboock ISBN: 9780593101551

Marie Benedict and Victoria Christopher Murray

A remarkable novel about J. P. Morgan’s personal librarian, Belle da Costa Greene, the Black American woman who was forced to hide her true identity and pass as white in order to leave a lasting legacy that enriched our nation, from New York Times bestselling author Marie Benedict, and acclaimed author Victoria Christopher Murray.

In her twenties, Belle da Costa Greene is hired by J. P. Morgan to curate a collection of rare manuscripts, books, and artwork for his newly built Pierpont Morgan Library. Belle becomes a fixture in New York City society and one of the most powerful people in the art and book world, known for her impeccable taste and shrewd negotiating for critical works as she helps create a world-class collection.

But Belle has a secret, one she must protect at all costs. She was born not Belle da Costa Greene but Belle Marion Greener. She is the daughter of Richard Greener, the first Black graduate of Harvard and a well-known advocate for equality. Belle’s complexion isn’t dark because of her alleged Portuguese heritage that lets her pass as white—her complexion is dark because she is African American.

The Personal Librarian tells the story of an extraordinary woman, famous for her intellect, style, and wit, and shares the lengths she must go to—for the protection of her family and her legacy—to preserve her carefully crafted white identity in the racist world in which she lives.

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