Black Studies (Reference Items)

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Black Studies Reference Items

The following are recommended Reference titles available from Steely Library

  • These are suggestions only and do not reflect the full range of materials that may be useful to you.
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A complete reference collection from over 50 publishers, powered by a network of cross-references that cut across topics, titles and publishers to provide answers - and new connections - in context.
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  • African American National Biography
    Location: REF E 185.96 .A4466 2008
    An "8-volume set containing over 4,000 entries written and signed by distinguished scholars, the AANB ... includes a wide range of African Americans from all time periods and all walks of life, both famous and nearly-forgotten. In the words of AANB editor Henry Louis Gates, Jr., 'These stories, long buried in the dusty archives of history, will never be lost again. And that is what scholarship in the field of Black Studies should be all about.'"(
  • Encyclopedia of African American Society
    Location: REF E 185 .E546 2005
    "This two-volume reference seeks to capture the ways in which the tenets and foundations of African American culture have given rise to today's society. Approaching the field from a 'street level' perspective, these two volumes cover topics of universal interest in America: rap music, sports, television, cinema, racism, religion, literature, and much more. The Encyclopedia of African American Society is also the first comprehensive yet accessible 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. This is a definitive, reliable, and accessible entry point to learning the basics about African American society." (
  • Encyclopedia of Black Studies
    Location: REF E 185 .E554 2005
    "[T]he leading reference source for dynamic and innovative research on the Black Experience ... contains a full analysis of the economic, political, sociological, historical, literary, and philosophical issues related to Americans of African descent. This single-volume reference is the vanguard of the recent explosive growth in quality scholarship in the field. More than a chronicle of black culture or black people, this encyclopedia deals with the emergence and maturity of an intellectual field over the past four decades. Beginning with the protests at San Francisco State College in 1967 that led to the first degree-granting department of Black Studies, the field’s rapid growth over time necessitates an authoritative account of the discipline." (
  • Encyclopedia of the Underground Railroad
    Location: REF E 450 .H855 2006
    "This volume brings together for the first time the array of important 'people, ideas, events and places associated with fugitive slaves and the Underground Railroad.' Author Hudson, a historian, has written extensively on the subject. The alphabetically arranged entries include the courageous acts of individual slaves as well as the 'friend of the fugitive,' black and white, North and South. Also covered are U.S. states, Underground Railroad sites, legislation, publications, and topics that provide historical and cultural background." (
  • Slavery in the United States: A Social, Political, and Historical Encyclopedia
    Location: REF E 441 .S635 2007
    "A comprehensive, contextual presentation of all aspects--social, political, and economic--of slavery in the United States, from the first colonization through Reconstruction." (Publisher's web site)
  • African Americans in the Visual Arts
    Location: REF N 6538.N5 O86 2003
    "[C]ontains information about 192 African-American painters, sculptors, ceramists, illustrators, cartoonists, photographers, filmmakers, and architects who made important contributions to the fine arts during the 19th and 20th centuries. Each entry summarizes the artist's biographical information, educational background, sources of influence and inspiration, and major works created." (
  • Black Women in America
    Location: REF E 185.86 .B542 2005
    Three volumes. "Over 900 A-Z entries with extensive cross references after each entry "In three magnificent volumes, Black Women in America, second edition celebrates the remarkable achievements of black women throughout history, highlights their ongoing contributions in America today, and covers the new research the first edition helped to generate ... Includes more than 150 new entries, plus revisions and updates to all previous entries ... 500 illustrations, many published here for the first time ... over 335 biographies, many newly prepared for this publication ... sidebars on interesting aspects of the history and culture of black women ... a bibliography for each entry, plus a major bibliographical essay ... a chronology and a comprehensive index." (Publisher's web site)
  • 100 Most Popular African American Authors: Biographical Sketches and Bibliographies
    Location: REF PS 153.N5 D74 2007
    "Here's a single volume containing 100 profiles of your favorite contemporary African American writers, along with lists of their works. Short profiles provide an overview of the author's life and summarize his or her writing accomplishments. Many are accompanied by black-and-white photos of the author. The biographies are followed by a complete list of the author's published works ... Readers who want to know more about their favorite African American authors or find other books written by those authors, students researching AA authors for reports and papers, and educators seeking background information for classes in African American literature will find this guide invaluable." (
  • Encyclopedia of African American Military History
    Location: REF UB 418.A47 W45 2004
    "[D]esigned to provide long overdue recognition to the outstanding accomplishments of hundreds of African American servicemen. More than three hundred entries will not only delineate the achievements of individuals and military units, but will also highlight important, often forgotten battles, wars, legislation and policy, organizations and movements, and historical incidents." (
  • African Americans in Sports
    Location: REF GV 583 .A567 2004
    This two volume set "features alphabetically arranged articles on the history, influence, and accomplishments of African Americans in sports. Users will find meticulous research and historical perspectives on a wide variety of often underrepresented subjects. Coverage extends from the 1800s through 2002 and addresses athletics at both the national and international level ... Occasional black-and-white archival photographs accompany the text. A list of entries by category, a general index, an index by sport, a general bibliography, and a chronology provide support." (

The Black Studies Research Guide is maintained by Allen Ellis. Suggestions and comments are welcome.

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