Encyclopedia of African-American Education

Encyclopedia of African-American Education

Encyclopedia of African-American Education

Encyclopedia of African-American Education

Synopsis

This indispensable reference is a comprehensive guide to significant issues, policies, historical events, laws, theories, and persons related to the education of African-Americans in the United States. Through several hundred alphabetically arranged entries, the volume chronicles the history of African-American education from the systematic, long-term denial of schooling to blacks before the Civil War, to the establishment of the Freedmen's Bureau and the era of Reconstruction, to Brown v. Board of Education and the civil rights reforms of the last few decades. Entries are written by expert contributors and contain valuable bibliographies, while a selected bibliography of general sources concludes the volume.

Excerpt

The Encyclopedia of African-American Education is an essential, comprehensive reference tool for researchers, teachers, scholars, students, and laypersons who need information under a single cover on significant issues, policies, historical events, laws, theories, organizations, institutions, and people incident to the education of African-Americans in the United States. This segment of the American population is unique in that its educational history includes as law and public policy the systematic, long-term denial of the acquisition of knowledge. Initially, African-Americans were legally forbidden to be schooled in the American South, where most of them had lived as slaves from the 1600s. The attitude was cultivated by policymakers and slaveholders that blacks were incapable of mastering academic subjects. This period, which ended about 1865 with the conclusion of the Civil War and the establishment of the Freedmen's Bureau, was followed by sixty-nine years of laws, policies, and practices providing for rudimentary and vocationally oriented education under the dual-school, separatebut-equal policies established by Plessy v. Ferguson in 1896. These policies did not end until the 1954 and 1955 Supreme Court decisions in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas were reinforced by the passage of civil rights and equal educational opportunity legislation in the mid-1960s. AfricanAmericans and some whites of this era worked assiduously to effect the repeal of discriminatory laws and to revise public policies and attitudes in order to secure educational equality for African-Americans. Attitudes about appropriate schooling and the education provided (or lacking) for blacks have been and remain unresolved moral, political, legal, economic, and psychological dilemmas for our nation.

In this reference tool, the coeditors sought to provide a rich, extensive resource characterized by breadth and depth on each topic. Important local and regional information has been presented, along with that which is national in scope. A difficult editorial problem occurred when the number of pages of manuscript copy we originally submitted to the publishers exceeded the prescribed contract limitation, resulting in our having to eliminate or shorten many entries.

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