The Black Press and the Struggle for Civil Rights (The African-American Experience)

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9780531110362: The Black Press and the Struggle for Civil Rights (The African-American Experience)

An account of the Black press from the first Black newspaper to the integration of Black journalists into the mainstream of American journalism

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From Kirkus Reviews:

From the appearance of Freedom's Journal in 1827 to what Senna sees as today's ``integration of black journalists into the mainstream of American journalism,'' the battles for emancipation, and then for civil rights, have been the black press's chief raison d`ˆtre, the battle for commercial viability its Waterloo. Senna's account of prominent journalists, from Frederick Douglass and Ida B. Wells to Carl Rowan, and generally evanescent publications (Ebony and others from John H. Johnson's publishing empire are exceptions) suggests the integral role that press has played in our social and political history. Unfortunately, the book is superficially researched (endnotes cite only secondary sources plus a 1969 Britannica article), and heavily padded with general history; despite frequent quotes, it lacks all but the barest hint of the special flavor of black journalism. This may have some appeal for its unusual focus but, if possible, steer readers to Wolseley's imposing Black Press, USA (Iowa State University Press, second editon 1990). Perfunctory, dark b&w illustrations; bibliography; index. (Nonfiction. YA) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

From Booklist:

Gr. 7-12. In 1827, Freedom's Journal, the first African American newspaper in the U.S., was published by John B. Russwurm and Reverend Samuel E. Cornish because, "We wish to plead our own cause. Too long have others spoken for us." Although all the African American publications begun in the nineteenth century were poorly financed and short-lived, once heard, the African American voice was never silenced, and new publications cropped up as the old failed. Senna traces the history of many of these publications from Freedom's Journal to the most influential present-day newspapers, devoting considerable space to Frederick Douglass, Ida B. Wells, W. E. B. DuBois, Robert Abbott, John Johnson, and others who greatly influenced the style and substance of minority publications. The author offers little critical commentary, seemingly seeing no difference in the quality of the various periodicals. Still, for those seeking information on the African American press, this thoroughly annotated volume provides a beginning. A few black-and-white photographs are included, and a list of suggested additional readings is appended. Sheilamae O'Hara

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Carl Senna
Published by Franklin Watts (1993)
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Carl Senna
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