Books: Non-Fiction

Black Reconstruction in America

Book – Non-fiction. By W. E. B. Du Bois. Introduction by David Levering Lewis. 2014. 623 pages.
Originally published in 1935, Du Bois’ Black Reconstruction was the first book to challenge the prevailing racist historical narrative of the era and in sharp, incisive prose, tell the story of the Civil War and Reconstruction from the perspective of African Americans.

Time Periods: 18th Century, 19th Century, Civil War Era: 1850 - 1864, Reconstruction Period: 1865 - 1876, Industrial Revolution: 1877 - 1899
Themes: African American, Democracy & Citizenship, Racism & Racial Identity

Black Reconstruction in America tells and interprets the story of the 20 years of Reconstruction from the point of view of newly liberated African Americans. Though lambasted by critics at the time of its publication in 1935, Black Reconstruction has only grown in historical and literary importance. In the 1960s, it joined the canon of the most influential revisionist historical works. Its greatest achievement is weaving a credible, lyrical historical narrative of the hostile and politically fraught years of 1860-1880 with a powerful critical analysis of the harmful effects of democracy, including Jim Crow laws and other injustices. With a series introduction by editor Henry Louis Gates Jr., and an introduction by David Levering Lewis, this edition is essential for anyone interested in African American history.

W. E. B. Du Bois was a public intellectual, sociologist, and activist on behalf of the African American community. He profoundly shaped Black political culture in the United States through his founding role in the NAACP, as well as internationally through the Pan-African movement. Du Bois’s sociological and historical research on African-American communities and culture broke ground in many areas, including the history of the post-Civil War Reconstruction period. Du Bois was also a prolific author of novels, autobiographical accounts, innumerable editorials and journalistic pieces, and several works of history. [Publisher’s description]

ISBN: 9780199385652 | Published by Oxford University Press, USA.