In the decades following the American Civil War, African American intellectuals focused much of their attention beyond the borders of the United States and, in doing so, engaged global histories of colonization, slavery, immigration, and imperialism. They also found occasion to celebrate the traditions, achievements, and contributions made by Africans around the world. While a significant body of scholarship attends to the work of politicians, clergy, actors, and artists, relatively little attention has been paid to the role of black historians.
In this podcast, Stephen G. Hall introduces and expands on important issues at play in his study: the sources black historians enlisted to frame critical events, the community they engaged beyond the walls of the academy, and the ways their discourse was intertwined with activism, from anti-imperialism to Pan-Africanism to the Civil Rights Movement. Illuminating the often overlooked scholarly productions of African American historians, Hall’s findings are enriching our understanding of black intellectual history.