Book Size: 9" x 6"

Pages: 248

Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781623716615

By Dr. Amilcar Shabazz

Illustrations: Black & white photos

Release date: Fall 2024

Category:

In Defiance

Lives that Mattered in the Struggle for Racial Justice and Equality before the U.S. Civil War

By • By Dr. Amilcar Shabazz

$ 20

About this book

Inspiring stories of those who risked their lives so others would be free.

In Defiance is a corrective. American history has historically suffered from the systematic effort of many in power to suppress the stories of those whose lives serve as models for those who came aftermodels of conscience, activism, and dedication to the cause of the abolition of enslavement.

Following an introduction to the history of enslavement in the Americas, twenty people's lives, Black and white, men and women, are profiled in order to convey the monumental commitmentits source and its expressionthey carried with them throughout their lives. Those peopleand the circumstances that influenced, inspired, and motivated them to risk their well-being and their lives for the freedom and equality of enslaved peopleare conveyed in vivid vignettes, often including their own words.

Their stories are an antidote to the numerous attempts being made to deny, suppress, erase, and whitewash the actual people and events that occurred and that, in the telling, can cause discomfort. These stories need to be shared and recounted in classrooms. They are intended “to afflict the comfortable and comfort the afflicted“ as Black and white people will experience them differently, a significant reason for the authors' choice to write the book together. The book's other primary purpose is to inspire and embolden readers to make John Lewis's “good trouble“ and Drew Gilpin-Faust's “necessary trouble“ in the face of on-going racism, now 160 years after the proclamation that accomplished at least some of the defiant quest of the men and women whose stories the book contains.

The authors bring their life experiences and activism into the telling of the stories and into the decisions about what to focus upon in the telling. It is their hope that readers will benefit from the two voices and see the importance of having such stories resonate with all people, regardless of race.

As you read, consider the obstacles faced by the people profiled and then imagine what it will take for you to become an advocate for racial justice. Then take whatever action you deem necessary and remember those who came before.

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About the authors

Tom Weiner is a Northampton-based writer, educator, and anti-racism activist. He taught 3rd-6th grade at the Smith College Campus School for 40 years and middle and high school summer school for 34 years. He initiated efforts to create a Reparations Commission in Northampton, MA and has co-facilitated workshops for pre-school teachers and parents entitled, “Developing Healthy Boys.“

Dr. Amilcar Shabazz is a professor in the W.E.B. Du Bois Department of Afro American Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He is the Treasurer and former President of the National Council for Black Studies. His writing has appeared in books, academic journals, and magazines. He has appeared as a commentator on contemporary and historical events and issues in a wide range of local, national, and international media. He has been a Fulbright Senior Specialist and has taught, lectured, and done scholarly work in more than twenty countries across Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, and Latin America. As a member of Amherst's African Heritage Reparations Assembly, he has guided its efforts as the second municipality in the U.S. to approve a funded process of atonement and reparative justice.

About the Author

Dr. Amilcar Shabazz is a professor in the W.E.B. Du Bois Department of Afro American Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He is the Treasurer and former President of the National Council for Black Studies. His writing has appeared in books, academic journals, and magazines. He has appeared as a commentator on contemporary and historical events and issues in a wide range of local, national, and international media. He has been a Fulbright Senior Specialist and has taught, lectured, and done scholarly work in more than twenty countries across Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, and Latin America. As a member of Amherst’s African Heritage Reparations Assembly, he has guided its efforts as the second municipality in the U.S. to approve a funded process of atonement and reparative justice.

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