11 26 2014
  10:36 am  
     •     
The Wake of Vanport oral history
McMenamins

Book Review: 'Fade Away' by Dawayne Williams

Riveting memoir of manhood

By any yardstick you want to use, Dawayne Williams had a very tough childhood. He and his younger brother were raised in the projects in Washington, DC by a single-mom while his dad (who denied paternity anyway) was in and out of prison for a variety of criminal offenses. Consequently, Dawayne grew up ...

Read more: Book Review: 'Fade Away' by Dawayne Williams

Book Review: 'Kevin and His Dad' by Irene Smalls

Children's book just right for Father's Day

With Father's Day looming on the horizon, I'm sure plenty of folks are starting to think about buying a meaningful gift for the man in their life. Well, any dad with a young son would undoubtedly appreciate this timeless classic, first published a decade ago, by Irene Smalls, the award-winning author of 15 children's books and 3 interactive storytelling CDs designed with African American youngsters in mind. . . .

Read more: Book Review: 'Kevin and His Dad' by Irene Smalls

The Tough Stuff: 'Slavery and Public History'

America's slave past is being analyzed as never before, yet it remains one of the most contentious issues in U.S. memory. In recent years, the culture wars over the way that slavery is remembered and taught have reached a new crescendo. From the argument about the display of the Confederate flag over the state house in Columbia, South Carolina, to the dispute over Thomas Jefferson's relationship with his slave Sally Hemings and the ongoing debates about reparations, the questions grow ever more urgent and more difficult. . . .

Read more: The Tough Stuff: 'Slavery and Public History'

Book Review: 'Something Torn and New: An African Renaissance'

"Linguicide is the linguistic equivalent of genocide. Genocide involves conscious acts of physical massacre; linguicide, conscious acts of language liquidation. This is precisely the fate of African languages in the diaspora… If history is replete with the death of languages, there have also been cases where languages have been resurrected from the dead. Israel, for instance, needed the resurrection of Hebrew to reconnect with the ancient memory…
The African continent's relationship to the world has thus far been that of donor to the West. Africa has given her human beings, her resources, and even her spiritual products… African languages are essential for the decolonization of African minds as well as for the African renaissance… All this calls for a very different attitude toward our languages on the part of African governments and the African intelligentsia."   -- from pages 17,65, 127 & 128.
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Read more: Book Review: 'Something Torn and New: An African Renaissance'

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