Print Reference Resources

This is a broad guide covering African American life and culture. It is limited to printed reference books in the humanities and social sciences. All titles listed are available in the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library. As a guide, it will lead the user to more extensive material in the subject area.

Table of Contents


Afro-American History: A Bibliography. 1974-1981. 2 vols. African American Research Center 016.32526.S54A.  Over 3,000 abstracts from America, history and life and Historical abstracts since 1954; chronological arrangement.

The African-American Mosaic: A Library of Congress Resource Guide for the Study of Black History and Culture. 1993. Main Stacks 016.9730496.L616A.  A broad survey of the Library of Congress’ holdings concerning the history and culture of black Americans in the United States. Part 1, “African-Americans in the Antebellum Period,” includes materials about: slavery; free blacks; and abolitionists’ antislavery movements, and sectional controversy. Part 2, “Emancipation and Beyond,” begins with the Civil War, moves into the Reconstruction era, (which includes materials dating to approximately 1880), and ends with what is called the Booker T. Washington era, which spans the years from 1880 to  approximately 1915. Part 3, “And the Pursuit of Happiness,” discusses: World War I and Postwar Society; the Depression, the New Deal, and World War II; and the Civil Rights era.

A Bibliography of the Negro in Africa and America. 1965 [c1928]. African American Research Center 016.32526.W89B1965.  Monroe Work’s classic bibliography contains 17,000 references in 74 classified chapters, all published before 1928.  The book was the first comprehensive bibliography of its kind and has been widely used by scholars and laymen.

Black Access: A Bibliography of Afro-American Bibliographies. 1984. African American Research Center 016.9730496. N468BL. Helps “locate information on virtually every aspect of Afro-American life, culture, and history.” Lists library catalogs, guides and nseparately published bibliographies.

Black Authors: A Selected Annotated Bibliography. 1991. Undergrad Reference 013.0396073.N429B.  A bibliography of books written, co-authored, or edited by African Americans that includes over 3,000 titles in all subject areas, fiction and non-fiction. The earliest work cited was published in 1845 and the most recent in 1989.  A few African and Caribbean writers who are living and/or publishing in the US are included.

Blacks in America: Bibliographic Essays. 1973. African American Research Center 016.301451.B567.  Lists 4,000 book and article titles grouped in chronological periods covering the period from 1500 to 1970.

Early Black Bibliographies, 1863-1918. 1982. African American Research Center 016.973 Ea76. Brings together 19 old, rare, and out of print bibliographies.  These bibliographies give clear indication that from before the Civil War there were those searching for documentation of the black presence.  A special feature of many of the bibliographies is their inclusion of hard to find 19th century periodical articles which report on contemporary issues and events.

Eight Negro bibliographies. 1970. Main Stacks 016.301451 W67E.   Includes: The freedom rides.–The Southern students’ protest movement.–The University of Mississippi and James H. Meredith.–The Black Muslims in the United States.–Martin Luther King, Jr., 1929-1968.–The awesome thunder of Booker T. Washington.–The lynching records at Tuskegee Institute; with lynching in America.–The perilous road of Marcus M. Garvey: A Bibliography, and some correspondence with Booker T. Washington, Emmett J. Scott, and Robert Russa Moton.

Harvard Guide to African-American History. 2001. African American Research Center 973.0496073 H261.  Includes more than 15,000 entries.  The first part of the Guide contains 12 essays on historical research aids, from traditional archival and reference materials to the Internet. The second and largest part presents comprehensive and chronological bibliographies. The third part contains listings of resources on the special subjects of women.

Index to Afro-American Reference Resources. 1988. African American Research Center 973.0496073.ST481.  Sources include titles generally considered to be reference tools, such as dictionaries, encyclopedias, catalogs, indexes, abstracts, bibliographies, and resource guides, as well as selected resources such as classic history texts and anthologies that fall outside the traditional reference area. This index to Afro-American reference sources provides general subject access to entire works as well as coverage of specific chapters within books.

The Progress of Afro-American Women: A Selected Bibliography and Resource Guide. 1980. African American Research Center 016.9730496.SI58P.  4,000 references to the lives and contributions of African American women in the 19th and 20th centuries. Arranged according  to 34 subject sections with numerous subtopics.

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African-American Women: A Biographical Dictionary. 1993. African American Research Center 920.72.AF83.  Includes nearly 300 biographies to women who have made significant contributions to social reform, politics, arts and entertainment, religion, business, education, and the professions from the colonial era to present.

Black Americans in Autobiography. 1984. African American Research Center 016.9209.B76B1984.  Annotated bibliography of autobiographies written by African Americans from the Civil War to 1973.

Black Biography 1790-1950: A Cumulative Index. 1991 . African American Research Center 920.009296073.B5614.  Indexes 297 reference books microfilmed in Black Biographical Dictionaries, 1790-1950. 1987. Microfiche 6.  Volumes 1-2 arranges alphabetically 30,000 biographical sketches of historical figures. Volume 3 contains indexes by place of birth, occupation, religion, and sex.

Contemporary Black Biography: Profiles from the International Black Community. 1992- . African American Research Center 920.009296.C767.  An ongoing, multivolume biographical encyclopedia that offers broad and international coverage of individuals from a wide range of fields.  Includes nationality, occupation, subject, and name indexes.

Dictionary of American Negro Biography. 1st ed. 1982. African American Research Center 920.009296.L828D.  A compendium of scholarly biographical essays on major figures.  Includes no individual living as of January 1, 1970.  Entries are written and signed by well-known scholars and include bibliographic references.

Icons of Black America: Breaking Barriers and Crossing Boundaries.  3 vols.  2011.  African American Research Center 920.009296073 Ic7.  Alphabetically arranged entries offer analysis on some of the most influential African Americans, organizations, and institutions in American history, from the late 19th century to the present.  100 African American people, groups, and organizations are covered.

In Black and White. 3rd ed. 1980. 2 vols. + suppl. African American Research Center 016.920073.SP71980.  A guide to magazine articles, newspaper articles, and books concerning the careers and contributions to society of more than 15,000 black individuals and groups. Includes index to occupations.

Notable Black American Women. 1992-2003. Books 1-3.  African American Research Center 920.7208996.N843.  Each essay outlines significant achievements, and the public’s response to those achievements.  Five hundred women who have made significant contributions to American society and the world are profiled in the original book. 300 additional women are profiled in Book II.   Book III features 300 contemporary and historical women.

Voices of Historical and Contemporary Black American Pioneers. 2012. 4 vols.  African American Research Center 920.009296073.  Features stories of 200 historical figures and 150 contemporary African American scholars and professionals from varied career fields.  Arranged by career category, each section of the work begins with a biographical narrative of early black pioneers in the field, followed by original interviews conducted by the editors or autobiographical narratives written by the subjects.

Who’s Who Among African Americans. 9th ed. 1996- . African American Research Center 920.073.W62171.  Reference provides biographical and career details on more than 20,000 notable African American individuals, including leaders from sports, the arts, business, religion and more. An obituary section contains fully updated entries for listees who have died since the previous edition.

Who’s Who in Colored America: A Biographical Dictionary of Notable Living Persons of African Descent in America. 7 vols. 1927-1950. Main Stacks 920.9.W621.  Each volume has approximately 3,000 biographical sketches.  Has subject indexes to geographical and vocational information of biographies.

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Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African & African American Experience.  5 vols.  2005.  African American Research Center 305.896072 En192.  More than 4,000 articles cover prominent individuals, events, trends, places, political movements, art forms, business and trade, religion, ethnic groups, organizations and countries on both sides of the Atlantic.  History and culture in the United States, throughout the rest of the Americas, and in Africa receive strong emphasis.

Almanac Of African American Heritage: A Book Of Lists Featuring People, Places, Times, And Events That Shaped Black Culture. 2001. African American Research Center 973.0496073 Al62. Spanning history, popular culture, education, religion, science, technology, business, law, government, fine arts, sports, and the military, this work spotlights dozens of trail blazers, from Dorothy Height to Warren Thompson, from Dr. Benjamin Carson to Barbara Jordan.  Entries include: Enduring African American folk remedies and innovative contributions in medical research, Pioneering African American attorneys, judges, governors, and senators, Notable Broadway plays and award-winning movies with African American themes, A tribute to African American soldiers, including women nurses in World War I.

Black America: A State-by-State Historical Encyclopedia.  2 vols. 2011.  African American Research Center 973.0496073 H7846.  A concise reference of African American history from the origins of slavery in the American colonies to present.  Each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia has a separate chapter written by contributors with expertise in African American history.

Black Women in America. 3 vols. 2005. African American Research Center 305.48896073 B561 2005.   Nearly 600 entries explore the contributions African American women have made throughout history.

Encyclopedia of African-American Culture & History.  2nd ed.  6 vols.  2006.  African American Research Center 973.0496073 En19 2006.  1,300 articles and an appendix of statistics and primary source documents.  Addresses broad themes critical to understanding the texture of the cultures, achievements, and challenges comprised in North America, Central and South America and the Caribbean.

Encyclopedia of African American Popular Culture.  4 vols.  2011.  African American Research Center 973.0496073 En1933.   Includes essays on art, artists, the arts; business and entrepreneurs; civil rights; cross-cultural influences; cultural movements; customs and traditions; dance and dancers; education and educators; festivals and celebrations; films, filmmakers, and actors; folklore influences; foods; the spoken word; law and legal issues; music and musicians; politics and political activities; protests and activists; and so on.

Encyclopedia of the African Diaspora: Origins, Experiences, and Culture.  3 vols.  2008.  African American Research Center 305.896003 En199.  More than 500 entries covering the people, places, and events of the African diaspora, spanning five continents and five centuries.  Organized in A–Z sections covering global topics, country of origin, and destination country.

The Negro Yearbook. Annual. 1912-1938. Main Stacks 325.26.N312.  This classic reference work, edited by Monroe N. Work, is a compilation of information and statistics on the African American: economic, social, and historical. Of particular interest was his continued record of lynchings in the United States.

New York Public Library African American Desk Reference. 1999.  African American Research Center 305.89607303 N42.  This reference book by Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture contains 5,000 topics.  It covers important people, places, organizations, movements, and creative works.  Its 19 chapters, include Timelines of African American History, Political and Civil Rights Leaders, African Contributions to the Making of the Americas, Holidays and Celebrations, Museums and Historical Sites, Religion and Spirituality, Health Tips and Recipes, Business Contacts and Professional Associations, Demographics and Population, Major Writers, Artists, and Musicians, Musical Forms,  Sports, and more.

Sage Encyclopedia of African Cultural Heritage in North America.  2 vols.  2015.  African American Research Center 960 Sa184.  350 signed entries focusing on Americanisms (cultural retention traceable to an African origin) and cultural continuities (ongoing practices and processes through which African culture continues to be created and formed).

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History: Chronologies, Fact Books, & Guides

The African American Electorate: A Statistical History.  2 vols.  2012.  African American Research Center 324.60973 W175a.   A reference work of registration data on African American voters from Colonial America to the present. It features election returns for African American presidential, senatorial, congressional, and gubernatorial candidates over time.

Black Firsts: 2000 Years of Extraordinary Achievement. 1994. African American Research Center 909.0496073.B561. Nearly 3,000 instances of firsts ranging from science to education to sports and entertainment are described.

Black Saga: The African American Experience. 1995. African American Research Center 973.0496073.C462B.  A survey of the people, events, and places of African American history from 1492 to the present.  Brief entries are arranged in chronological order.

Chronology of African-American History. 1991. African American Research Center 973.0496073.H784C1997.  From the arrival in America of Pedro Alonzo Nino, identified as a black sailor on Christopher Columbus’ Santa Maria, to recent events like L. Douglas Wilder’s victory as the first elected black governor in United States history, this book chronicles the people, places, and events that have had a major impact on African American history.  Contains information about legislation and court decisions, and data on social, economic, political, and educational milestones.

Historic Landmarks of Black America. 1991. African American Research Center 917.304928.C168H.  Describes 300 historical sites including houses, museums, libraries, churches, forts, colleges, and battlefields, that play an important role in African American history. 

The Historical and Cultural Atlas of African Americans. 1991. African American Research Center 973.0496073.AS13h1998.  Treats the black experience in the United States from the period of the slave trade to 1991. Examines African origins.  Entries are chronologically arranged.

Historical Statistics of Black America. 1995. Main Reference Q.973.0496073.H6293.  Nearly 2000 tables of statistical information on blacks in North America from colonial times until 1975. Subject-specific chapters are chronologically arranged and reflect developments in black history. Subjects include slavery, and the migration of blacks into the south between 1870 and 1910.

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Afro-American Literature and Culture Since World War II: A Guide to Information Sources. 1979.  Main Stacks 016.813.P32A.  An annotated post-World War II through 1970 bibliography.  Subjects include the civil rights movement, folklore, prison writing, riots, religion, women, and psychology, among others.  An Author section lists 56 authors including  Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr., Nikki Giovanni, W.E.B. Dubois, Ralph Ellison, Richard Wright, and Langston Hughes, among others.

Afro-American Poetry and Drama, 1760-1975: A Guide to Information Sources. 1979.  Main Reference 016.81.AF85.  Consists of two parts: Afro-American poetry, 1760-1975 and Afro-American drama,  1850-1975. Both sections are divided into General Studies containing works of reference, history and criticism and Individual Authors listing an author’s books of poetry as well as biographical and critical studies.

Bibliographical Guide to African-American Women Writers. 1993.  African American Research Center 016.8108.J761B.  Documents the literary achievements of 900 African American women from 1746 to the present in thousands of primary and secondary sources.  Writers are arranged in alphabetically and include a list of primary sources entered alphabetically by title, followed by secondary sources entered by author.

Black Literature Criticism.  3 vols.  1992.  African American Research Center 809.8896.B5616.  Contains critical excerpts on some 125 internationally prominent black authors of the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries.  Each author entry includes an introduction that covers biographical details, the major literary interests of the author, descriptions and summaries of the author’s best known works, and critical commentary about the author’s achievement, status, and importance; a chronological list of principal works; and multiple excerpts of criticism, including book reviews, academic studies of individual works, and comparative studies, arranged chronologically to give a sense of how critical reception evolved over time.

Black Literature Criticism: Classic and Emerging Authors since 1950.  2nd ed.  3 vols.  2008.  African American Research Center 809.889 B561. Covers 80 authors, the majority of whom are African American, but representative African and Caribbean authors are also included.  Each entry presents a historical survey of critical response to the author’s works.

Contemporary African American Novelists: A Bio-bibliographical Critical Sourcebook.  1999.  African American Research Center 813.09 C7674.  This reference book is a guide to the lives, works, and achievements of 79 contemporary African American novelists.  Of the  79 novelists profiled, 41 are women. Each entry has a biographical sketch of the author, a critical assessment of the author’s major works and themes, a sample of critical responses the author’s novels have elicited, and a selected bibliography listing the author’s publications as well as useful secondary material.

Contemporary Black American Playwrights and Their Plays: A Biographical Directory and Dramatic Index. 1988.  Main Reference 812.09.P442C.  Covers 700 contemporary dramatists, screenwriters, radio and TV scriptwriters active between 1950 and 1988.  Provides a wealth of information on obscure and overlooked American playwrights as well as some famous ones.

Dictionary of Literary Biography. 1978- .

  • v. 33: Afro-American Fiction Writers After 1955. 1984. African American Research Center 928.1.D561.v.33. Essays on the multitalented, multigenred (sci-fi, juvenile lit, detective novels, etc.) African-American writers whose careers flourished after 1955, and the themes and issues reflected in their works: more strong black female protagonists; a move away from the traditional reverence for Christianity; concern with the black family, especially with black fathers; interactions within the black community; and a move toward not just recording history but interpreting history.
  • v. 38: Afro-American Writers After 1955: Dramatists and Prose Writers. 1985. African American Research Center 928.1.D561. v.38.  African American dramatists and prose writers whose works grew out of or shaped the black arts movement, by creating prose and theatrical works relevant to African Americans.  Works that reflect the increasing importance of autobiography and biography for expressing conceptions of self and of the meaning of African American history.
  • v. 41: Afro-American Poets Since 1955. 1985. African American Research Center 928.1.D561.v.41.  Essays on 51 African American poets whose works helped to shape a contemporary literature.  Flourishing in the 1960s, these generations of poets achieved a new black renaissance rivaling the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s.
  • v. 50: Afro-American Writers Before the Harlem Renaissance. 1986. African American Research Center 928.1.D561.v.50.  Contains alphabetically arranged entries that provide career biographies of thirty-four African-American writers active between the Harlem Renaissance and 1940; each with a list of principal works and a bibliography.
  • v. 51: Afro-American Writers from the Harlem Renaissance to 1940. 1987. African American Research Center 928.1.D561.v.51. Contains alphabetically arranged entries that provide career biographies of thirty-four African-American writers active between the Harlem Renaissance and 1940; each with a list of principal works and a bibliography.
  • v. 76: Afro-American Writers, 1940-1955. 1988. African American Research Center 928.1.D561.v.76.  Among the African American writers featured in this volume are Gwendolyn Brooks, Ralph Ellison, Naomi Long Madgett, Ann Petry, Dorothy West and Richard Wright.

Dictionary of Literary Biography Documentary Series: An Illustrated Chronicle. V. 8: The Black Aesthetic Movement. 1991.  African American Research Center 810.9.D561.  Concerns the Black Arts Movement which began in the early 1960s and last through the mid 1970s.  Divided into 6 sections, the middle sections focus on four of the most important writers associated with the Black Arts Movement.  These are about Amiri Baraka, Haki R. Madhubuti, Sonia Sanchez, and Ishmael Reed.  The first and last sections are thematic: “The Black Aesthetic Background” and “The Emergence of Black Women Writers.”

Harlem Renaissance: A Gale Critical Companion.  3 vols.  2003.  African American Research Center 810.9 H2261.  Includes entries on the major topics, authors and works of the period complete with reprinted full text literary criticism. Volume 1 features an introduction to the Harlem Renaissance, a descriptive chronology of events and entries on five major topics related to the movement. Volumes 2 and 3 include approximately 35 entries on the major literary figures and their works from the period.

Index to Black Poetry. 1974.  African American Research Center 016.811.C36I.  Chiefly concerns black poetry in the United States.  Coverage is from the 18th century to the early 1970s.  94 books and pamphlets by individual poets are indexed as well as 33 anthologies. There are three major sections:  The Title and First Line index, the Author Index and the Subject Index.

Index to Poetry by Black American Women. 1986.  African American Research Center 016.81108.C366I.  Over 4,000 poems by 400 female poets are covered.  Consists mostly of a title and first line index, supplemented by indexes to authors and to 1,100 subjects.

Masterpieces of African-American Literature. 1992.  African American Research Center 810.M393.  Summarizes, explains and evaluates works of African American literature including articles on writings from James Baldwin, W. E. B. DuBois, Langston Hughes, Malcolm X, Toni Morrison and many more.  Covers 149 works of literature arranged alphabetically by title.

Masterplots II: African American Literature Series. 3 vols. 1994.  African American Research Center 810.9.M3932.  Contains 266 essays examining major writings in all genres.  Offers author plot summary, short analysis, critical view, and annotated bibliography.  Among writers included are Maya Angelou, W. E. B. Du Bois, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Jamaica Kincaid, Toni Morrison, Ann Petry, and Richard Wright.

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0African American Films Through 1959: A Comprehensive, Illustrated Filmography. 1998. African American Research Center 791.43652 R392A.  All films with a predominantly or entirely African American cast or that were about African Americans are detailed here. Each entry includes cast and credits, year of release, studio, distributor, type of film and other production details. In most cases, a brief synopsis of the film or contemporary reviews of it follow.

Black Action Films: Plots, Critiques, Casts and Credits for 235 Theatrical and Made-For-Television Releases.  1989.  African American Research Center 791.43652 P219b.  Compilation of four decades of film beginning with the 1960s.  Provides detailed filmographic data and full cast and credits listings.

Blacks in American Films and Television: An Encyclopedia. 1988.  African American Research Center 791.4308996. B567B.  A collection of synopses of important black-oriented film and television programs with credits for each production and critical commentary.

Blacks in Black and White: A Source Book on Black Films.  2nd ed.  1995.  African American Research Center 791.43 Sa48b 1995.  Traces the history of the Black film industry from its beginnings around 1910 to its demise in 1950, chronicling the activities of pioneer Black filmmakers and performers.  Details a unique era in American history when films featuring all-Black casts, produced and directed by Blacks, were shown primarily to Black audiences.

Blacks on Television: A Selectively Annotated Bibliography. 1985. African American Research Center 016.791p.  Covers 45 years of black involvement in television (1939-1984) and contains more than 2,800 entries.

Dictionary of the Black Theatre: Broadway, Off-Broadway, and Selected Harlem Theatre. 1983.  African American Research Center 792.08996073.W834D.  Part I of this work documents more than 300 shows from 1898 to 1981.  Part II includes biographical entries of major performers, writers, and directors and notes major organizations that have encouraged the black theatre in New York City.

Directory of Blacks in the Performing Arts. 2nd ed. 1990. African American Research Center 792.025.M32D1990.  Has information on approximately 1,100 black performing artists in film, television, radio, theatre, dance and musical performance.

Encyclopedia of African American Actresses in Film and Television.  2010.  African American Research Center 791.43028092 M126e.  Provides 360 brief biographies of African American film and television actresses from the silent era to 2009. Includes entries on well-known and nearly forgotten actresses, running the gamut from Academy Award and NAACP Image Award winners to B-film and blaxpoitation era stars.  Each entry has a complete filmography of the actress’s film, TV, music video or short film credits. Also features more than 170 photographs,

Frame by Frame II: A Filmography of the African American Image, 1978-1994.  1997.  African American Research Center 791.4309 K69f1.  A compilation of information on more than 3000 films, includes listings of films and of black casts, directors, executive producers, film composers, performers, producers, screenwriters, and Oscar-award winners and nominees.

Historical Dictionary of African American Cinema.  2nd ed.  2015.  African American Research Center 791.4508996 F311h 2015.  Coverage includes a chronology, an introductory essay, appendixes, and an extensive bibliography. The dictionary section has over 1,400 cross-referenced entries on actors, actresses, movies, producers, organizations, awards, and terminology.

Historical Dictionary of African-American Television.  2006.  African American Research Center 791.4508996 F311h.  Covers animation, documentaries, sitcoms, sports, talk shows, and variety shows.  Has information on general issues ranging from African American audiences and stereotypes through the related networks and organizations.  Also has a chronology of events and a bibliography.

Images of Blacks in American Culture: A Reference Guide to Information Sources. 1988.  African American Research Center 700.973.IM1.  Explores images of Blacks as they have been presented in the study and development of American culture in 10 chapters. In particular, see chapter 3 “From Uncle Tom to Cliff Huxtable, Aunt Jemina to Aunt Nell: Images of Blacks in Film and the Television Industry.”

Separate Cinema: The First 100 Years of Black Poster Art.  2014.  African American Research Center 741.67409 K641s.  Presents the history of black-cast films through their posters.  Features images that recount the diverse and historic journey of the Black film industry from the earliest days of Hollywood to present day.

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African American Quotations. 1998.  African American Research Center 081.08996073 Af83.  More than 2,500 quotations from over 500 individuals are included, taken from points in history ranging from early American settlement to the present.  The sources for these expressions of freedom, hope, survival, and strength include such notable figures as George Washington Carver, Malcolm X, Marcus Garvey, Jesse Jackson, Mary McLeod Bethune, James Baldwin, Oprah Winfrey, and Alice Walker.  Organized by subject area for ease of reference.

Bartlett’s Familiar Black Quotations.  2013. African American Research Center 082.08996 B284.  Five thousand quotes from the time of Ancient Egypt through American slavery, Jim Crow, the Civil Rights Era, Apartheid, to the present day.  Passages from authors, artists, scientists, philosophers, theologians, activists, politicians, and many others.

Contemporary Quotations in Black.  1997.  African American Research Center 081.08996073 C767.  Over 1,000 quotations by noted African Americans and black African men and women, from Spike Lee to Terry McMillan, from Colin Powell to Shaquille O’Neal, from Nelson Mandela to U.S. poet laureate Rita Dove.  Each quote is followed by the source from which it was taken.

Famous Black Quotations.  1995.  African American Research Center 808.88008996 F211 1995.  Quotations by people of African descent who have achieved prominence in the arts, science, politics, education, sports and other fields.

My Soul Looks Back, ‘Less I Forget: A Collection of Quotations by People of Color. 1993. African American Research Center 081.08996073.M991993.  Contains some 7,000 quotations, arranged by subject, collected by a teacher whose goal was to create source materials for Black History Month.  Quotations, arranged chronologically, cover more than 450 topics.

Racist & Sexist Quotations: Some Of The Most Outrageous Things Ever Said. 1992.  African American Research Center 305.8 F47R.  Presents a compendium of quotations from distinguished individuals that express racial and ethnic prejudice and negative sexual stereotyping.

Wisdom of the African World.  1996.  African American Research Center 081.08996 W753.  A collection quotations, reflections, and folk sayings from ancient and modern Africans.  Includes contributions from the Caribbean, including Jamaica, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Cuba.  Novelist, short story writer, and professor of English Reginald McKnight has selected bits of wisdom from black individuals such as Nelson Mandela, Chinua Achebe, Malidoma Patrice Some, Desmond Tutu, and many others.

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African-American Community Studies from North America: A Classified, Annotated Bibliography. 1991.  African American Research Center 016.305896.H321A.  Identifies and annotates the literature on African American local (urban, town, rural) communities.  Covers the United States and Canada.

African-American Social Leaders And Activists2003.  African American Research Center 016.305896.H321A.   Documents the lives and legacies of a representative selection of memorable individuals who have been active leaders in African-American society, from colonial times to the present day.  Whether abolitionists or slave revolt leaders, civil rights activists or educators, newspaper publishers or club officers, African-American activists and social leaders have been at the forefront in the struggle for civil rights, racial equality, social justice, and community preservation.

African Americans and Criminal Justice: An Encyclopedia.  African American Research Center 364.08996073 Af834.  Provides coverage of law and criminal justice practices from the precolonial period, including the introduction of African slaves, up to practices in modern-day America.  Documents disproportionate representation of African Americans in national crime statistics and presents biographies of individuals.

African Americans And Political Participation: A Reference Handbook.  2003. African American Research Center 323.04208996 Af83.  Provides coverage of the various mechanisms African Americans have used to participate in U.S. political affairs from the colonial era to the present.  Twenty-five entries on important individuals and events such as the Nat Turner revolt, the Montgomery Bus Boycott, and the Return to Africa Movement.  Includes a chronology beginning with political events from colonial times.

Black American Culture and Society: An Annotated Bibliography. 1994.  Main Stacks 305.896073.B56182.  Gathers articles of crucial concern to Black Americans. These issues include education, research funding at historically black colleges and universities, voting rights, unemployment, income support policies, health care reform and racism.

The Black Family in the United States: A Revised, Updated, Selectively Annotated Bibliography. 1986. Main Stacks 016.30685.D294B.  Chronicles and accesses historical evolution of black families; up-to-date books, articles, and dissertations; annotated bibliography.

Black Immigration and Ethnicity in the United States: An Annotated Bibliography. 1985. African American Research Center 016.305896073.B561. U.S.  Consists of more than 1,000 entries on various facets of black immigration.  Organized into 19 categories,  the subjects covered are ethnicity and identity, immigration legislation and policies, demography and settlement, political activity, and the various black immigrant groups: African, Cuban, Puerto Rican, and so on.

Black Males in the United States: An Annotated Bibliography From 1967 to 1987. 1988. Main Stacks 016.1558496.EV15B. Annotated bibliography of published research literature on black males. Focuses on psychological and behavioral perspectives.

Encyclopedia of African American Business History. 1999.  African American Research Center 338.6422 En19.  Provides an overview of black business activities, and underscores the existence of a historic tradition of black American business participation. Entries range from biographies of black business people to overview surveys of business activities from the 1600s to the 1990s, including slave and free black business activities and the Black Wallstreet to coverage of black women’s business activities, and discussions of such African American specific industries as catering, funeral enterprises, insurance, and hair care and cosmetic products.  Also, there are entries on blacks in the automotive parts industry, black investment banks, black companies listed on the stock market, blacks and corporate America, civil rights and black business, and black athletes and business activities.

Encyclopedia of African-American Civil Rights: From Emancipation to the Present. 1992. African American Research Center 305.896073.EN19.  Contains over 800 short articles.  Covers a wide array of events, legislation, court decisions, cultural achievements, speeches, organizations, and personalities that have contributed to the cause of African American civil rights.  Also includes a detailed chronology from 1861 to 1990.

Encyclopedia of African American Education. 2010. 2 vols. African American Research Center 371.82996.En192.  The encyclopedia follows the struggle of African Americans to achieve equality in education–beginning among an enslaved population and evolving into the present–as the efforts of many remarkable individuals furthered this cause through court decisions and legislation. Entries provide an overview of educational institutions at every level, from preschool through graduate and professional training, with special attention to historically and predominantly Black colleges and universities.  A unique appendix, “The Complete Bibliography of the Journal of Negro Education, 1932-2008,” includes listings of the tables of contents and reprinted articles on segregation, desegregation, and equality.

Encyclopedia of African-American Politics.  2003. African American Research Center 973.0496073 Sm644e.  Containing more than 400 entries, this volume examines the role of African Americans in the political process from the American Revolution to the present.  It focuses on basic political ideas, court cases, laws, concepts, ideologies, institutions, and political processes.

Encyclopedia of African American Society.  2005.  2 vols. African American Research Center 305.896072 En192.  The first comprehensive reference set in this field to give voice to the turbulent historical trends– slavery, segregation, “separate but equal” –that are often ignored in favor of mere facts.  Also contains hundreds of articles on notable African Americans (Martin Luther King, Jr., Jackie Robinson, Miles Davis), groundbreaking events (Emancipation Proclamation, Los Angeles Riots), sports and culture (Rap Music, Jazz), and significant heritage sites (Apollo Theater).

Encyclopedia ff American Race Riots.  2007.  2 vols.  African American Research Center 305.80097303 En192.  Topics include: particular riots and violent racial incidents; the African American community’s preparedness and responses to this form of mass violence; federal responses to rioting; the underlying causes of rioting; reactions of prominent figures. Besides almost 300 cross-referenced entries, most of which conclude with lists of additional readings, the encyclopedia also offers a timeline of racial violence in the United States, an extensive bibliography, and a selection of primary documents.

Freedom Facts And Firsts: 400 Years Of The African American Civil Rights Experience. 2009.  African American Research Center 323.1196073 Sm613f. Spanning nearly 400 years from the early abolitionists to the present, this guide book profiles more than 400 people, places, and events that have shaped the history of the black struggle for freedom.  Coverage includes information on such mainstays as Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, and Rosa Parks, and lesser known figures such as the Housewives’ League of Detroit.

The Jim Crow Encyclopedia.  2008.  2 vols.  African American Research Center 305.896073 J564.  Jim Crow refers to a set of laws in many states, predominantly in the South, after the end of Reconstruction in 1877 that severely restricted the rights and privileges of African Americans.  Includes 275 essay entries on such areas as law, media, business, politics, employment, religion, education, people, events, culture, the arts, protest, the military, class, housing, sports, and violence as well as through accompanying key primary documents excerpted as side bars.

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Antebellum Black Newspapers. 1976. African American Research Center 016.071471.J15A. Indexes the New York Freedom’s Journal (1827-1829), The Rights of All (1829), The Weekly Advocate (1837), and The Colored American (1837-1841).

Black Index: African American Research Center in Selected Periodicals, 1907-1949. African American Research Center 016.97030496.N468B.  An author and subject guide to over 1,000 articles on the African American in more than 350 periodicals published during the first half of the 20th century.  Cumulates references pertaining to African Americans the Faxon Company’s Annual Magazine Subject Index published from 1907  to 1949. Some little-known magazines and state historical publications indexed.

Black Newspapers Index. 1986-2007. Newspaper 016.0713. IN21. Continues Index to Black Newspapers. 1977-1985.  Provides abstracts and indexing of all significant articles in the Afro-American, Muslim Journal, New York Amsterdam News, Chicago Defender, Cleveland Call & Post, Norfolk Journal & Guide, Los Angeles Sentinel, and Michigan Chronicle.

Black Studies On Disc. 1995-2004.  African American Research Center, Pan-African Workstation.  Contains 100,000 records for monographs and audiovisual material owned by the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture; and the last five years of periodical indexing from Index to Black Periodicals.

Blacks in Selected Newspapers, Censuses and Other Sources: An Index to Names and Subjects. 3 vols. 1977.  African American Research Center Q.016.9293 Ab16.  Indexes 19th and 20th century newspapers.

Chicago Afro-American Union Analytic Catalog: An Index to Materials on the Afro-American in the Principal Libraries of Chicago. 5 vols. 1972.  African American Research Center Q.016.301451 C432.  Indexes articles published 1890 and 1940.

Extant collections of early Black newspapers: a research guide to the Black press, 1880-1915, with an index to the Boston Guardian, 1902-1904. Newspaper 016.0713 C141E.

Index to Black Periodicals. 1950-2004.  Main Reference 325.2605 IND 1A.  Indexes magazines and journals by authors and subjects. Covers all aspects of the African- American experience. Reviews included.

Kaiser Index to Black Resources, 1948-1986 . 5 vols. 1992 . African American Research Center 016.9730496073.K123. Contains 174,000 citations from over 150 periodicals.

The Marshall Index: A Guide to Negro Periodical Literature, 1940-1946.  African American Research Center 011.34 M355g2002.

Roots of Afrocentric Thought: A Reference Guide To Negro Digest/Black World, 1961-1976. 1998.  African American Research Center 977.311 SE53R.  The most influential and widely read Black literary magazine in the 1960s, “Negro Digest” played a critical role in the era’s Black Arts and Black Consciousness movement and is the most complete voice of that movement. Renamed “Black World” in 1970, the magazine gave voice to scholars coining and developing the concept of Afrocentric and African-centered analysis. Part One includes chapters on Literature and Literary Criticism, History, Mass Media and the Arts, and Social and Political Analysis, which provide annotations on original articles and speeches. Part Two indexes original materials, including poetry, short stories and plays, reviews, and interviews.

The Rose Bibliography Project.  These reference books index several leading periodicals covering the black eperience in America during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.  They are designed for users interested in locating the important items dealing with the question of social change and reform.

  • Analytical guide and indexes to Alexander’s magazine, 1905-1909.  Main Stacks 371.9405 ALINDEX.
  • Analytical guide and indexes to the Colored American magazine, 1900-1909. 2 vols.  Main Stacks 301.45105 C0INDEX.
  • Analytical Guide and Indexes to the Crisis, 1910-1960.  3 vols.  African American Research Center 977.311 SE53R325.2605.CRINDEX.
  • Analytical guide and indexes to the Voice of the Negro, 1904-1907.  Main Stacks 301.45105 VOIINDEX.

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Here are a few useful home pages which indicate the variety of Internet Resources available in African American Studies.

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