African American News and Genealogy

This site was developed to provide you with news that relates to African American Genealogy, History and News. Please feel free to forward this link to others. I hope you enjoy this site and good luck with your research! Cheers, Kenyatta D. Berry Managing Director

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Kids' Book Puts Slavery In Perspective

By: By Leonard Pitts Jr.Tribune Media Services Granted, it is not the sexiest subject in the world, not the kind of thing that gets people het up enough to write letters to the editor. Yet there are few things more vitally important to understanding the world and our role in it. I'm talking about history and the teaching thereof. And if you keep rolling your eyes, your face is going to freeze like that. Not that I'm surprised. We are a historical people, a nation of short memories and cherished myths. For us, history doesn't matter -- right up until it does Right up until someone says the Holocaust didn't happen. Or that Sen. Joseph McCarthy was an American hero. Or that the Civil War was fought over so-called "state's rights." At which point you -- by which I mean I -- start to wonder what children are being taught about the nation they will someday inherit. For my money, not nearly enough. We don't do a very good job of teaching history in this country. And no history is more ineptly taught than African-American history. It has usually been my experience that that history is either ignored or glossed over lightly with an emphasis on the achievements of a few inventors and scholars. There is little evocation of the context that made the achievements more noteworthy, the litany of lynchings and beatings, chains and cheatings, toughness and triumph that define African America's story. It's as if those things are regarded -- even during Black History Month -- as too difficult for tender ears to hear. So you can understand why I am pleased with Diane McWhorter's new book. More information:


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