Introduction to African American Studies

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9781580730396: Introduction to African American Studies
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Highly Recommended. All levels/libraries--CHOICE

Everything you need to teach African American Studies is in this book.--Ahmad Rahman, Associate Professor of History, University of Michigan.

There is an ongoing debate as to whether African American Studies is a discipline, or multidisciplinary or interdisciplinary field. Some scholars assert that African American Studies use a well-defined common approach in examining history, politics, and the family in the same way as scholars in the disciplines of economics, sociology, and political science. Other scholars consider African American Studies multidisciplinary, a field somewhat comparable to the field of education in which scholars employ a variety of disciplinary lenses-be they anthropological, psychological, historical, etc., --to study the African world experience. In this model the boundaries between traditional disciplines are accepted, and researches in African American Studies simply conduct discipline based an analysis of particular topics. Finally, another group of scholars insists that African American Studies is interdisciplinary, an enterprise that generates distinctive analyses by combining perspectives from different traditional disciplines and synthesizing them into a unique framework of analysis.

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About the Author:

Talmadge Anderson was professor emeritus of the Department of Comparative American Cultures and Marketing at Washington State University. He was the founder and former editor of the Western Journal of Black Studies, a professional journal in African American and African Studies. His publications include the volume Black Studies: Theory, Methods, and Cultural Perspectives and numerous articles that examine various dimensions of the African American experience. James Stewart was professor of Labor Studies and Industrial Relations and African and African American Studies at Penn State University, where he was formerly vice provost for Educational Equity and director of the black studies Program. He has written over seventy articles and has authored and co-authored, or edited and co-edited ten books, one of which is a collection of essays about Africana studies, Flight in search of Vision. He is a former editor of the Review of Black Political Economy and a former president of both the National Economic Association and the National Council for Black Studies.

Review:

Anderson and Stewart offer an idiosyncratic black studies textbook that will generate significant discussion in the field. The book posits transdisciplinary African American studies emphasizing the need to transcend traditional academic and disciplinary categories and to incorporate what the authors call indigenous knowledge--distinctive ways of knowing that historically have been shared by African-descended people. The authors are explicitly activist in their approach to the teaching of the field, raising questions and advancing analyses that are capable of leading to improvements in the well-being of people of African descent. Nine chapters cover the history and theoretical foundations of black studies; the history of blacks in the US; black American society and culture, psychology, politics, economics, and arts; and science and technology's impact on shaping race and racism. Each chapter ends withQuestions and Exercises highlighting key themes and perspectives,and the authors provide thorough footnotes so readers can easily to to the sources. An extensive 32-page bibliography includes social science classics from the early 20th century, Internet references from 2007,and hundred of other relevant sources. Summing up: Highly recommended. All levels/libraries. --CHOICE, M. Kachun, Western Michigan University.

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James Stewart, Talmadge Anderson
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