Black Americans Create A World,
In the half century between the Civil War and World War I, antiblack
racism in the world was at its peak.
It took the form of colonialism in
Africa, and various replacements for slavery in the United States.
Africans in traditional cultures tried military resistance to European
imperial forces, almost always without success.
Africans who learned the ways of the White man began to organize for
greater self-determination and cultural pride.
In the United States, Black Americans dealt with white rejection by
creating their own social, economic and
Although the spiritual basis was almost always Christianity, Black
clergymen declared that people of African ancestry were just as capable
of understanding the Gospel of Jesus Christ as people of European
In addition to institutions that paralleled those of the
Whites, they began to create jazz, a whole new styles of music that soon
became recognized throughout the world as distinctively American.
increasingly, a few of them began to recognize their cultural roots in
Following the Civil War, most African Americans followed the advice
of Frederick Douglass by seeking political power within the Republican
But as the years passed, they were increasingly eliminated from
By the turn of the century, African strategies for living in
White America fell into three major categories:
One of the few lasting benefits of the Freedmen’s Bureau was in
the field of education, for which the newly-emancipated people displayed
a deep thirst.
African Americans of all ages flocked to the new schools
as soon as they were opened during and after the Civil War.
Whites generally regarded them with distrust, and subjected the
Northern-born teachers to social ostracism, and sometimes the schools
themselves to physical destruction.
administrators in the African American schools accommodated themselves
to Southern society.
They practiced Jim Crow in their relationships
with Black faculty and students, and ceased their advocacy of civil
Most significantly, however, most of them came to
espouse a curriculum and educational philosophy that would not place