African, African American, & Black Identity


  • Recommended African American Websites

    This list includes selected African American web resources useful for academic research and information purposes. Only Websites that are reflective of African American realities were considered; sites that are exclusively African in origin or focus are only rarely included. Recommended Websites listed below were evaluated for breadth, perceived authority, stability, usefulness, and accuracy.

Books, Book Chapters, & Journal Articles:

  • Adams, F. D., & Sanders, B. (2003). Alienable rights : the exclusion of African Americans in a white man's land, 1619-2000 (1st ed.). New York: HarperCollins Publisher.

    The authors contend that the drive for African American equality has never had the support of the majority of white Americans. Racial progress has come in brief historical bursts when a committed militant minority -- abolitionists, radical Republicans, civil rights activists -- stirred the nation to action, pressuring it to change; but, invariably, advances have been followed by concerted efforts to restore white privilege

  • Cross, W. E. (1991). Shades of black : diversity in African-American identity. Philadelphia: Temple University Press.

    In this controversial and path-breaking book, William E. Cross, Jr., presents the diversity and texture that have always been the hallmark of Black psychology. Shades of Black explodes the myth that self-hatred is the dominant theme in Black identity. With a thorough review of social scientific literature on Negro identity conducted between 1936 and 1967, Cross demonstrates that important themes of mental health and adaptive strength have been frequently overlooked by scholars, both Black and White, obsessed with proving Black pathology. He examines the Black Power Movement and critics who credit this era with a comprehensive change in Black self-esteem. Allowing for a considerable gain in group identity among Black people during this period, Cross shows how, before this, working and middle class, and even many poor Black families were able to offer their progeny a legacy of mental health and personal strength that sustained them in their struggles for political and cultural consensus.

  • Dyson, M. E. (1993). Reflecting black : African-American cultural criticism. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

    From rap music to preaching, from Toni Morrison to Leonard Jeffries, from Michael Jackson to Michael Jordan, Reflecting Black explores as never before the varied and complex dimensions of African-American culture through personal reflection, expository journalism, scholarly investigation and even homily.

  • Gates, H. L., & West, C. (2000). The African-American century : how Black Americans have shaped our country. New York: Free Press.

    Black Americans are at the heart of the greatest achievements of our history, from music to law, from politics to sports, from literature to religion. Now the two leading African-American intellectuals of our day show us why the twentieth century was The African-American Century, with one hundred original profiles of the most influential African Americans from W. E. B. Du Bois to Oprah Winfrey. 
    Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and Cornel West offer their personal picks of the African-American figures who did the most to shape our world. Here we find much-loved figures such as scientist George Washington Carver and civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr., and contemporary favorites such as comedian Richard Pryor, novelist Alice Walker, and golf champion Tiger Woods.

    Written in a lively, accessible style and fully illustrated throughout, The African-American Century is a celebration of black achievement and a tribute to the black struggle for freedom in America that will inspire us for years to come.

  • Guthrie, R. V. (1998). Even the rat was white : a historical view of psychology (2nd ed.). Boston: Allyn and Bacon.

    Even The Rat Was White views history from all perspectives in the quest for historical accuracy. Histories and other background materials are presented in detail concerning early African-American psychologists and their scientific contributions, as well as their problems, views, and concerns of the field of social psychology. Archival documents that are not often found in mainstream resources are uncovered through the use of journals and magazines, such as the Journal of Black Psychology, the Journal of Negro Education, and Crisis. The historical role of African-Americans in psychology. History of Psychology, Psychology of Prejudice.

  • Parham, T. A., White, J. L., & Ajamu, A. (1999). The psychology of Blacks : an African-centered perspective (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice Hall.

    This book highlights the limitations of traditional psychological theories and approaches when applied to African descent people. It provides information on how the African Centered Perspective is defined, as well as how it operates in the context of the African American family with regard to identity development, education, mental health, research, and managing contemporary issues. It links the context of African American life to the traditions, values and spiritual essence of their African ancestors in an attempt to acknowledge the African worldview and assist the African American community in addressing some of the challenges they will face in the 21st century.

  • Tatum, B. D. (1999). "Why are all the Black kids sitting together in the cafeteria?" : and other conversations about race. New York: BasicBooks.

    Walk into any racially mixed high school and you will see Black youth seated together in the cafeteria. What is going on here? Is this self-segregation a problem we should try to fix, or a coping strategy we should support? How can we get passed our reluctance to talk about racial issues? Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? provides us with a new framework for thinking and talking about race.

  • West, C. (1994). Race matters (1st Vintage Books ed.). New York: Vintage Books.

    First published in 1993 on the one-year anniversary of the L.A. riots, Race Matters has since become an American classic. Beacon Press is proud to present this hardcover edition with a new introduction by Cornel West. The issues that it addresses are as controversial and urgent as before, and West's insights remain fresh, exciting, and timely. Now more than ever, Race Matters is a book for all Americans-one that will help us build a genuine multiracial democracy.