Black Liberation

Black Liberation : A Comparative History of Black Ideologies in the United States and South Africa

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This is a sequel to Fredrickson's "White Supremacy: A Comparative Study in American and South African History" (OUP USA 1981). Where that book dealt with white domination of blacks in both societies, "Black Liberation" focuses on the efforts of African Americans and South African blacks to combat this domination. The book starts in the 1860s, following the emancipation of slaves after the Civil War, and ends with the conclusion of apartheid in South more

Product details

  • Hardback | 400 pages
  • 165.1 x 236.22 x 33.02mm | 703.06g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 019505749X
  • 9780195057492

Review quote

"A superb sequel to his comparison of the two countries in White Supremacy, Fredrickson's Black Liberation compres the black responses to white oppression with equal brilliance."--C. Vann Woodwardshow more

About George M. Fredrickson

About the Author: George M. Fredrickson is Edgar E. Robinson Professor of United States History at Stanford University. He is the author of nine books, including White Supremacy, which won the Ralph Waldo Emerson Prize, the Merle Curti Award, and was a jury nominee for the Pulitzer more

Review Text

This look at the nature of black protest in South Africa and the US is a profound and necessary contribution to the field of black studies. History professor Fredrickson (Stanford; White Supremacy, 1981, etc.) puts forth the general thesis that, in both countries, black leaders were motivated not by a desire to switch places with their oppressors but by a wish to create a truly equal, race-blind polity that hewed to the best of Western democratic philosophy. Through an analysis that ranges from the early 19th century to today, he demonstrates that violent rebellion had no real presence in either society until the 1960s. Frederick Douglass, New York Globe editor T. Thomas Fortune, and Martin Luther King in the US, and early Cape political leader A.K. Soga and Nelson Mandela in South Africa, among others, all proposed working within the system to make it better for all people. Fredrickson demonstrates how ideologies as diverse as nationalism, communism, Christianity, capitalism, pan-Africanism, and populism were combined and adapted by both movements toward this end. He also explains how thoroughly aware the black leaders in the two societies were of one another, viewing their own struggles as part of a larger fight for black humanity everywhere. According to the author, Marcus Garvey's pan-Africanist movement, for example, had a great impact on black political thought in South Africa, with one acolyte founding the ANC's branch in the Western Cape. Yet Garvey's rhetoric of self-determination was, at least in the case of former president-general of the ANC Z.R. Mahabane, wed to a belief that the future of South Africa must include "the full and free cooperation of all white and black races of the land." Showing the stunning parallels in the politics of black peoples on both sides of the Atlantic, this offers definitive proof of the robust continuity of black freedom struggles. (Kirkus Reviews)show more

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13 ratings
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3 31% (4)
2 0% (0)
1 8% (1)
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