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The Cause of Freedom  By  cover art

The Cause of Freedom

By: Jonathan Scott Holloway
Narrated by: Bill Andrew Quinn
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Publisher's Summary

What does it mean to be an American? The story of the African American past demonstrates the difficulty of answering this seemingly simple question. 

If being "American" means living in a land of freedom and opportunity, what are we to make of those Americans who were enslaved and who have suffered from the limitations of second-class citizenship throughout their lives? African American history illuminates the United States' core paradoxes, inviting profound questions about what it means to be an American, a citizen, and a human being. 

This book considers how, for centuries, African Americans have fought for what the Black feminist intellectual Anna Julia Cooper called "the cause of freedom". It begins in Jamestown in 1619, when the first shipment of enslaved Africans arrived in that settlement. It narrates the creation of a system of racialized chattel slavery, the eventual dismantling of that system in the national bloodletting of the Civil War, and the ways that civil rights disputes have continued to erupt in the more than 150 years since Emancipation. The Cause of Freedom carries forward to the Black Lives Matter movement, a grass-roots activist convulsion that declared that African Americans' present and past have value and meaning.

©2021 Oxford University Press (P)2021 Tantor
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

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Masterful and elegant synthesis

You may not be able to find a more timely and skillfully handled synthesis of African American history. Taking the struggle for freedom and dignity as its unifying theme, we are whisked through every single major episode that contributed to the evolution of the African American history. There is attention to culture, politics, gender, and social evolution. Any reader will better understand the concerns of today after digesting this masterpiece. Well written and well read, I can’t say enough positive things about this book.