Melissa V. Harris-Perry— Eliza Gallie was a free black woman living in Petersburg, Virginia, before the Civil War. She was divorced, owned property, and had financial resources that made her unusual among free blacks in the Confederate South. In 1853 Gallie was arrested and charged with stealing cabbages from a
We have all heard the news, read the stories, watched the footage—America has reached a crossroads on racial injustice. The path forward may be challenging, but as a contributor to the global understanding of human affairs, we hope our books will help inform the public consciousness and promote tolerance for
Manisha Sinha— Most Americans greeted Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew’s decision to put Harriet Tubman, the abolitionist heroine of the Underground Railroad, on the front of the twenty-dollar bill and relegate the Indian hunting President Andrew Jackson to its back with approval. The ironies abound. Fugitive slaves like Tubman most feared
Multimedia Masquerade—Masks and Disguise in Contemporary Art: Interview with Pamela McClusky by David Ebony
David Ebony— As Performa 15, the performance art biennial, gets underway this week in New York, on the West Coast, Los Angeles’s Fowler Museum at UCLA hosts “Disguise: Masks and Global African Art,” an extraordinary look at the use of masks in contemporary performance art, sculpture, photography, installation and video.
Ralph Ellison has often been cited by literary scholars as one of the 20th century’s most tragic examples of writer’s block: after the immense success of 1952’s Invisible Man, the author lived for more than 40 years without ever publishing a second novel. Yet, in Ralph Ellison In Progress: From
Peculiarly, the story of Bill Traylor is both intensely local and transnational. Born into slavery in 1854, Traylor spent most of his life in the nearly unknown town of Benton, Alabama, just outside of Montgomery. As a self-taught artist, he moved to the state capital in 1935 when he was