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Race against Empire: Black Americans and Anticolonialism, 1937-1957 (Collectifs) Paperback – March 27, 1997

ISBN-13: 978-0801482922 ISBN-10: 0801482925

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Race against Empire: Black Americans and Anticolonialism, 1937-1957 (Collectifs) + Cold War Civil Rights: Race and the Image of American Democracy (Politics and Society in Twentieth-Century America)
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Product Details

  • Series: Collectifs
  • Paperback: 280 pages
  • Publisher: Cornell University Press (March 27, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801482925
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801482922
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #498,321 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Race against Empire . . . breaks much ground in current historiography on cold war and anti-colonial practices. . . . it is useful for its analysis of America's cold war policies, how these policies affected black political movements in the international sphere, and how, ultimately, this led to the collapse of the prominent opponents of colonialism and significant challenges to US foreign policy abroad. But Race against Empire is also important because it identifies a little-known constellation of intellectuals who, through creative and energetic insurgency in the context of cold war repressions, articulated the links necessary for building a movement of international solidarity among all oppressed peoples."—Race and Class

"This story of the potential—and the obstacles—in building a solidarity movement across national boundaries retains its full relevance in today's world, even as it reveals an important chapter in the history of both African Americans and of the U.S. left."—Monthly Review

"Although her central arguments are straightforward, they have a deep historical grounding. She gives attentionto the many long- and short-term conditions influencing the form and content of a diasporan identity in the 1940's. . . On the whole, Von Eschen paints a riveting portrait of a time in which radical anticolonialism and domestic Black civil rights marched hand in hand, before weathering the challenges of the Truman and Eisenhower years."—Against the Current

"Scholars of race, social movements, political science, or the mass media will find great value in this unsentimental account of a disturbing history."—Contemporary Sociology

"After reading Penny M. Von Eschen's brilliant account of African American efforts to overthrow colonialism in Africa during the 1940s and '50s, no one will be able to write about black politics without considering the international context. In the best tradition of W. E. B. Du Bois, C. L. R. James, and Cedric Robinson, she reminds us, as Malcolm X had three decades ago, that black liberation is 'not just an American problem, but a world problem.'"—Robin D. G. Kelley, author of Race Rebels: Culture, Politics, and the Black Working Class

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9 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Hack Steele on August 13, 1998
Format: Paperback
Useful because the subject is so little covered, this survey of the role of Afro-Americans in US foreign policy from the '30s through '50s, is limited by its narrow research focus on individuals and by its shallow analysis. The discussion, according to the title, ends in the late '50s, although the author dips into subsequent years. This truncation of the subject removes the most interesting period in whuch U.S. Blacks have affected U.S. foreign policy from the book's scope. Upshot: only historians and specialists are likely to enjoy it. Among key figures missing: cartoonist Ollie Harrington (mentioned only in passing) and Charles Howard, the first and most influential Afro-American journalist to cover the United Nations.
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