African-American History Topics

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Search our vast archive of interviews with scholars, journalists, activists, key political figures, and authors.

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  • Amiri-baraka
    We spend the hour looking at the life and legacy of Amiri Baraka, the poet, playwright and political organizer who died Thursday at the age of 79. Baraka was a leading force in the Black Arts Movement of the 1960s and 1970s. In 1963 he published "Blues People: Negro Music in White America," known as the first major history of black music to be written by an African American. A year later he published a collection of poetry titled...
    January 10, 2014 | Story
  • Giovanni2.jpg
    We continue our conversation with award-winning poet, activist and educator Nikki Giovanni. She is currently a distinguished professor of English at Virginia Tech. In 1968, 45 years ago, she published her first collection of poetry, "Black Feeling, Black Talk." She was soon dubbed the "Princess of Black Poetry." She has since published more than 30 books. Her latest is "Chasing Utopia: A Hybrid," a remarkable mix...
    December 16, 2013 | Story
  • Ebonyivy1.jpg
    We spend the hour with the author of a new book, 10 years in the making, that examines how many major U.S. universities — Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Brown, Dartmouth, Rutgers, Williams and the University of North Carolina, among others — are drenched in the sweat, and sometimes the blood, of Africans brought to the United States as slaves. In "Ebony & Ivy: Race, Slavery, and the Troubled History of America’s Universities,"...
    November 29, 2013 | Story
  • Traces3
    As we continue our conversation on slavery, we are joined by a woman who uncovered that her ancestors were the largest slave-trading family in U.S. history. Katrina Browne documented her roots in the film, "Traces of the Trade: A Story from the Deep North," which revealed how her family, based in Rhode Island, was once the largest slave-trading family in U.S. history. After the film aired on PBS in 2008, Browne went on to found the...
    November 29, 2013 | Story
  • Postshow_wilder
    Part two of our extended interview with MIT American history professor Craig Steven Wilder examining how many of the nation’s elite schools — including Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Brown, Dartmouth — are drenched in the sweat, and sometimes the blood, of Africans brought to the United States as slaves. Wilder has spent the last 10 years researching his book, "Ebony & Ivy: Race, Slavery, and the Troubled History of...
    October 30, 2013 | Web Exclusive
  • Ebonyivy1.jpg
    A new book 10 years in the making examines how many major U.S. universities — Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Brown, Dartmouth, Rutgers, Williams and the University of North Carolina, among others — are drenched in the sweat, and sometimes the blood, of Africans brought to the United States as slaves. In "Ebony & Ivy: Race, Slavery, and the Troubled History of America’s Universities," Massachusetts Institute of...
    October 30, 2013 | Story
  • Traces3.jpg
    As we continue our conversation on slavery, we are joined by a woman who uncovered that her ancestors were the largest slave-trading family in U.S. history. Katrina Browne documented her roots in the film, "Traces of the Trade: A Story from the Deep North," which revealed how her family, based in Rhode Island, was once the largest slave-trading family in U.S. history. After the film aired on PBS in 2008, Browne went on to found the...
    October 30, 2013 | Story
  • Harvarduniversitypres
    On Wednesday, we will interview MIT history professor Craig Steven Wilder, who spent a decade researching "Ebony & Ivy" about how many universities — such as Harvard and Yale — relied on slavery, and bred racist ideas. Click to read the prologue from his new book.
    October 29, 2013 | Web Exclusive
  • Hermanrelease2
    A dying prisoner has been released in Louisiana after serving nearly 42 years in solitary confinement, longer than any other person in the United States. Herman Wallace and two others, known as the Angola Three, were placed in solitary in 1972 following the murder of a prison guard. The Angola Three and their supporters say they were framed for the murder over their political activism as members of one of the first prison chapters of the Black...
    October 02, 2013 | Story
  • Birmingham-bombing2
    Part two of our conversation with Sarah Collins Rudolph, who is often referred to as the "fifth victim" of the Sept. 15, 1963, bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama. Rudolph’s sister, Addie Mae Collins, was killed along with three other young girls. Collins Rudolph was hit with shards of glass, lost an eye and was hospitalized for months. She is struggling to pay her medical bills. [includes rush...
    September 17, 2013 | Web Exclusive