African American Families Today: Myths and Realities

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From teen pregnancy and single parenting to athletics and HIV/AIDS, myths about African American families abound. This provocative book by two acclaimed scholars of race and ethnicity debunks many common myths about black families in America, sharing stories and drawing on the latest research to show the realities.

African American Families Today examines the wellbeing of African American families around topics including marriage, health, education, incarceration, wealth, and more. Authors Angela J. Hattery and Earl Smith show that even though the election of the first African American president, Barack Obama, has been symbolically important for African Americans, his presidency has not had a measurable impact on the daily lives of African American families. As the book shows, racial inequality persists—we’re clearly not in a “postracial” society.

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About the Author:

Angela J. Hattery is professor and director of women and gender studies at George Mason University. Her books include Interracial Relationships in the 21st Century.

Earl Smith is the Rubin Distinguished Professor of American Ethnic Studies and director of the American Ethnic Studies program at Wake Forest University. He is the author or editor of several books, including Race, Sport, and the American Dream.

Review:

Is Barack Obama the first postracial president? If you think so, then think again. In African American Families Today, Angela J. Hattery and Earl Smith systematically shoot down every major falsehood associated with the erroneous claim that Barack Obama is a postracial president. With an accessible narrative, the book provides readers with the tools to develop a powerful and incisive new perspective on race, racism, and contemporary U.S. society. Every well-informed American should read African American Families Today before they cast their vote in the 2012 presidential election. (Timothy McGettigan, Colorado State University at Pueblo)

With convincing evidence Hattery and Smith destroy white myths about black families, efforts, and opportunities, including stereotypes of marriage, athletics, and a postracial America. Central to white-created institutions, unjust enrichment for whites and unjust impoverishment for blacks are shown to still generate racial inequalities in health, mortality, education, incarceration, and voting. (Joe R. Feagin, Texas A&M University)

African American families are crucially important to society in the United States, and African American Families Today is an important exploration of their condition and behavior. All readers will find something to disagree with, and a vast amount to teach, enlighten, and move them. (Jennifer Hochschild, Henry LaBarre Jayne Professor, Harvard University)

Hattery and Smith have shown us that the prism of the family can be a particularly revealing way of chronicling the conditions of African Americans across a broad spectrum of issues. (Vernon D. Johnson, Western Washington University)

This insightful book is a must-read. Angela J. Hattery and Earl Smith provide a compelling and refreshing analysis of the complex forces impacting the contemporary African American Family. (William Julius Wilson, Lewis P. and Linda L. Geyser University Professor, Harvard University)

African American Families Today is the best book . . . [and] also the most provocative. African American Families Today eviscerates white myths about black Americans. Whether it's teen pregnancies, single parenting, athletics, or HIV/AIDS, myths about African Americans abound. This book debunks the myths and misconceptions, drawing on case studies and the latest research to show identities. (INTAMS review: Journal for the Study of Marriage & Spirituality)

Has the election of President Obama made a difference in the lives of African-Americans? The answer is no, according to Smith, a Wake Forest University ethnic studies professor, and Hattery, of George Mason University's women and gender studies program, who argue that 'the majority of [African–American] families are worse off than they were' before President Obama took office. In this sweeping analysis of the contemporary social and political environment facing black Americans, the authors debunk some of the most harmful myths, particularly that poor blacks are intellectually lazy and have little interest in education and that they commit more crimes than other ethnic or racial groups. Pervasive structural obstacles remain, too, from segregated and subpar schools to discrimination in employment and housing. Add in the Great Recession and the picture painted is bleak indeed. On the political front, the authors make good points about Obama's failure to appoint more blacks to his cabinet. [A] timely and absorbing book. (Publishers Weekly)

Authors Smith and Hattery provide evidence against theories that the election of President Obama either ushered in a postracial America or had a positive impact on African Americans as a whole. . . . Throughout the volume’s 11 chapters, arranged in topics ranging from the domestic (e.g., marriage, divorce, and child rearing) to issues of economics, crime and punishment, poverty and wealth, and politics, the authors explore and dispute the myths about the status of African American life now with varying degrees of efficacy. . . . Recommended . . . for high schools and undergraduate students of American or African American studies, sociology, or criminal justice. (Library Journal)

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Book Description ROWMAN & LITTLEFIELD, United States, 2015. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. From teen pregnancy and single parenting to athletics and HIV/AIDS, myths about African American families abound. This provocative book by two acclaimed scholars of race and ethnicity debunks many common myths about black families in America, sharing stories and drawing on the latest research to show the realities. African American Families Today examines the wellbeing of African American families around topics including marriage, health, education, incarceration, wealth, and more. Authors Angela J. Hattery and Earl Smith show that even though the election of the first African American president, Barack Obama, has been symbolically important for African Americans, his presidency has not had a measurable impact on the daily lives of African American families. As the book shows, racial inequality persists-we're clearly not in a "postracial" society. Seller Inventory # AAC9781442213975

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