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The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Afro American Studies

A general guide to library research in Afro American Studies.

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Introducing Special Collections and University Archives

Special Collections and University Archives continues in its efforts to build around the Du Bois collection, adding other important printed and manuscript materials in African American history.

African American History Special Collections

Summer Readings


Margo Crawford, What Is African American Literature? (2020) [on order at UMass]

Pero Dagbovie, What is African American History? (2015) [on order at UMass]

The Discipline and the African World 2022: The National Council for Black Studies Annual Report

Previous Readings


  • Kevin Gaines, African American History (pdf), in American History Now by Eric Foner and Lisa McGirr
  • Gene Jarrett, Representing the Race: A New Political History of African American Literature
  • Meier and Rudwick, Black History and the Historical Profession

Read one of the following survey texts:

  • Lerone Bennett, Jr., Before the Mayflower (any of last 2 or 3 editions)
  • ...., The Shaping of Black America
  • Mary Frances Berry and John W. Blassingame, Long Memory: the Black Experience in America
  • John Hope Franklin and Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham, From Slavery to Freedom
  • Darlene Clark Hine et al, African American Odyssey—any edition
  • James & Lois Horton, Hard Road to Freedom: the Story of African America
  • Deborah Gray White et al, Freedom On My Mind 

AFRO AM 701 List (Fall 2015)


Books listed below in the order in which they appear on the syllabus.

AFRO AM 702 List (Spring 2016)

Books listed below in the order in which they appear on the syllabus.