American Africans in Ghana: Black Expatriates and the Civil Rights Era (The John Hope Franklin Series in African American History and Culture)

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9780807830086: American Africans in Ghana: Black Expatriates and the Civil Rights Era (The John Hope Franklin Series in African American History and Culture)
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In 1957, Ghana became one of the first sub-Saharan African nations to gain independence from colonial rule. Over the next decade, hundreds of African Americans - including Martin Luther King Jr., George Padmore, Malcolm X, Maya Angelou, Richard Wright, Pauli Murray, and Muhammed Ali - visited or settled in Ghana. Kevin K. Gaines explains what attracted these Americans to Ghana and how their new community was shaped by the convergence of the Cold War, the rise of the U.S. civil rights movement, and the decolonization of Africa. Kwame Nkrumah, Ghana's president, posed a direct challenge to U.S. hegemony by promoting a vision of African liberation, continental unity, and West Indian federation. Although the number of African American expatriates in Ghana was small, in espousing a transnational American citizenship defined by solidarities with African peoples, these activists along with their allies in the United States waged a fundamental, if largely forgotten, struggle over the meaning and content of the cornerstone of American citizenship - the right to vote - conferred on African Americans by civil rights reform legislation.

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Review:

A superb, scholarly text on pan-Africanism. Gaines gives a detailed analysis of the interconnections between African American and Caribbean activists and the pioneers of African decolonization in Ghana. The author leaves no stone unturned. . . . Essential.--Choice In American Africans in Ghana, Kevin Gaines offers a richly detailed portrait of the community that gathered in Ghana around Nkrumah. He skillfully connects the lives of the 'returnees' with the wider history of the civil rights era in the United States and the politics of the cold war.--The New York Review of Books This is an important book that opens up new dimensions in the Pan-African history of the relationships established between Africa and the African diaspora in the modern period.--American Historical Review Contributes to various subfields of African American history, including the modern Civil Rights Movement, African American-centered Pan-Africanist thought, African American intellectual history, Afro-diasporic consciousness, and the vital, enduring African American-African political connection.--Journal of African American History Highly recommended for all academic libraries.--Multicultural Review Gaines has written a detailed and engaging book which explores a neglected aspect of US foreign policy, joining a small but significant cadre of authors dedicated to highlighting the racial dimensions of US foreign policy.--Modern African Studies Gaines's signal achievement is that he skillfully has placed this narrative in the broad context of black internationalism. . . . Gaines has demonstrated how the expatriate experience is linked to the expansive history of antiracist and anticolonial thought and practice in the African diaspora. He has written a book that is indispensable for a complete grasp of that history.--Journal of American History Gaines has written an excellent and important book.--The Nation Inspiring. . . . A valuable addition to the debate about the history of Pan-Africanism in Africa.--Journal of African History

About the Author:

KEVIN K. GAINES is director of the Center for Afroamerican and African Studies and professor of history at the University of Michigan. He is author of the award-winning Uplifting the Race: Black Leadership, Politics, and Culture during the Twentieth Century (from the University of North Carolina Press).

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9780807858936: American Africans in Ghana: Black Expatriates and the Civil Rights Era (The John Hope Franklin Series in African American History and Culture)

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ISBN 10:  0807858935 ISBN 13:  9780807858936
Publisher: University North Carolina Pr, 2008
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