Editor’s Note: In the August 26 edition of WKND Focus, we revealed the first 25 of the 50 books Black people should read. This week, we share with you the other 25 books.
26. The 100 Amazing Facts of the Negro-J.A. Rogers. Helga Rogers, 1952
In this 60-page book, J.A. Rogers lists 100 of the major contributions that Blacks have made to the world. Among these facts are many concepts that originated from Blacks but are currently used and practiced by Caucasians.
To validate his findings, he also provides proof of these facts in the latter half of the book.
27. The Five Negro Presidents-J.A. Rogers. Helga Rogers, 1965
In this 18-page pamphlet Rogers discusses the Black ancestry of four United States presidents and one vice president.
Among these are Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson and vice president Hannibal Hamlin.
28. Message to the Black Man- Honorable Elijah Muhammad. Secretarius MEMPS Publication. 1965
According to countless mainstream news organs, Elijah Muhammad, by far, was the most powerful black man in America. He is well known for the students he produced, like Malcolm X, Louis Farrakhan and Muhammad Ali.
This man of power exposed the black man as well as the world to a teaching, till now, was only used behind closed doors of high degree- Masons and Shriners.
The book approaches the question of what and who is God. It compares the concept held by religions to nature and mathematics.
It also explores the origin of the original man, mankind, devil, heaven and hell. Its title, Message To The Blackman, is directed to the American Blacks specifically, but addresses blacks universally as well.
29. The William Leo Hansberry African History Notebook (Volumes 1 and 2)-Edited by Joseph E. Harris. Howard University Press, 1974/1981
This is a collection of narrative histories that decipher and remove from the entanglement of myth and legend the pillars of Ethiopia’s unity.
30. Christianity, Islam and the Negro Race-Edward W. Blyden. Black Classic Press, 1993
In this book, Blyden offers an early African-centered perspective on race, religion and the development of Africa.
Blyden asserts the idea that Islam, a major religion in sub-Saharan Africa, has a much more unifying and fulfilling effect on sub-Saharan Africans, while Christianity, also a major religion in Africa which was mostly introduced by its European colonizers, had a demoralizing effect.
31. Black Athena, The Afroasiatic Roots of Classical Civilization (Volume 1)-Martin Bernal. Rutgers University Press, 1989
A three volume work, Black Athena reveals a less Eurocentric origin of Western civilization. Bernal’s thesis regards the perception of ancient Greece in relation to its African and Asiatic neighbors by the West—Europe, the change of this Western perception from the 18th century onward, and the subsequent denial by Western academia of the African and Asiatic influence on ancient Greek culture.
32. The Nigger Bible-Robert H. DeCoy. Holloway House Publishing Company, 1972
Nigger, as used in this book, is defined as a state of existence, whereas Negro is regarded as a state of the Nigger’s mind.
DeCoy, in The Nigger Bible, initiated the first attempt to change the Nigger’s state of mind to exist outside of the moral and spiritual laws of Judeo-Christianity.
33. Civilization or Barbarism: An Authentic Anthropology-Cheikh Anta Diop. Chicago Review Press Inc, 1991
As his final contribution to the reconstruction of African world history, Diop uses Civilization of Barbarism to broaden the ideology that he began in The African Origin of Civilization. He offers a critical challenge to orthodox scholarship’s interpretation of Egypt as a White civilization.
34. Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial Times to the Present-Harriett A. Washington. Knof Doubleday Publishing Group, 2007
Medical Apartheid is the first and only comprehensive history of medical experimentation on African Americans.
Starting with the earliest encounters between black Americans, Western medical researchers and the racist pseudo-science that resulted, it details the ways both slaves and freedmen were unknowingly used in hospitals for experiments—a tradition that continues today within some black populations.
35. A Book of the Beginnings-Gerald Massey. Black Classic Press, 1995
In this two-volume collection Massey focuses on Egyptian origins in the British Isles and explores the African/Egyptian roots of the Hebrews, the Akkado-Assyrians, and the Maori. By linking these diverse cultures and origins to their African roots, Massey demonstrates both the extent of African influence and its durability.
36. Africa: Mother of Western Civilization-Yosef ben-Jochannon. Black Classic Press, 1971
In lecture format, Dr. Ben identifies and corrects myths about the inferiority and primitiveness of the indigenous African peoples and their descendants.
37. African Origins of the Major Western Religions-Yosef ben-Jochannon. Black Classic Press, 1970
Dr. Ben explains the myths, history and beliefs that are the foundations of Christianity, Islam, and Judaism. In fact, he presents evidence to show that African spiritual concepts were stolen by Europeans and used to their benefit.
38. Fifty Days on Board a Slave Vessel- Pascoe G. Hill. Black Classic Press, 1993
Hill describes a vivid and unforgettable account of the stench, the overcrowding, and the acts of depravity on a slave ship. It is a reminder of the horrors of the exploitive Transatlantic Slave Trade.
39. Our Black Seminarians and Black Clergy Without a Black Theology-Yosef ben-Jochannan. Black Classic Press, 1978
In Black Seminarians, Dr. Ben outlines sources of Black theology before Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, showing how their ideas, practices, and concepts were already old in Africa before Europe was born.
40. The Name “Negro” It’s Origin and Evil Use-Richard B. Moore. Black Classic Press, 1960
This study focuses on the exploitive nature of the word ”Negro.” Tracing its origins to the African slave trade, he shows how the label “Negro” was used to separate African descendents and to confirm their supposed inferiority.
41. The Ruins of Empires- C.F. Volney. Black Classic Press, 1991 (original 1793)
From first-hand observations and study, Volney a European, demonstrates that early Nile Valley African civilization was the blueprint for European culture.
42. The Myth of Genesis and Exodus and the Exclusion of their African Origins-Yosef ben-Jochannon. Black Classic Press, 1974
The second book in a 3 volume set, this is a companion volume to African Origins of the Major Western Religions and The Need for a Black Bible.
It is an invaluable resource for anyone seeking to gain a better understanding of belief systems in the Western world.
43. Understanding the African Philosophical Concept Behind The Diagram of the Law of Opposites-Yosef ben-Jochannan. Black Classic Press, 1975
He combines in this book a dynamic lecture on the Diagram of the Law of Opposites, along with essays contributed by his graduate students on aspects of the same topic.
This collaboration between student and teacher distinguishes this volume from the many other books by this noted activist-historian.
44. Intellectual Warfare-Jacob Carruthers. Third World Press, 1997
This book is a detailed history of the Afrocentric worldview, critiques Eurocentrism in the academic arena and lays the foundation for reconstructing African minds.
45. Blues People: Negro Music in White America-LeRoi Jones (Amiri Baraka). HarperCollins Publishers, 1999
This is the first analytical and historical study of jazz and blues written by an African American. Baraka contends that although slavery destroyed many formal artistic traditions, African American music represents certain African survivals.
46. Climbing Jacob’s Ladder: The Enduring Legacy of African American Families-Andrew Billingsley. Simon & Schuster Adult Publishing Group, 1992
To help the reader understand the African-American family in its broad historical, social, and cultural context, the author traces the rich history of the black family from its roots in Africa, through slavery, Reconstruction, the Depression, the Civil Rights Movement, and up to the present.
47. Martin & Malcolm & America: A Dream or a Nightmare-James H. Cone. Orbis Books, 1992
This groundbreaking and highly acclaimed work examines the two most influential African-American leaders of this century.
While Martin Luther King, Jr., saw America as “a dream . . . as yet unfulfilled,” Malcolm X viewed America as a realized nightmare.
Cone cuts through superficial assessments of King and Malcolm as polar opposites to reveal two men whose visions were moving toward convergence.
48. The Maroon Within Us-Asa Hilliard. Black Classic Press, 1995
Written to provide strategies for the collective development of Black people, Hilliard’s fifteen essays address issues essential for socialization, self-determination, and cultural identity. Within the context of “community socialization,” Hilliard examines the economic, educational, spiritual, and political aspects of the African American reality.
Hilliard’s insight is fresh and ripe with solutions to many of the problems that affect Black people in America.
49. Blueprint for Black Power-Amos Wilson. Afrikan World Book Distributor, 1998
Wilson’s book argues that solving the problems of African-Americans requires the adoption of an “Afrikan-centered consciousness.”
In addition, the African-American community needs to become economically empowered by keeping cash flow within the community as much as possible.
50. The Painful Demise of Eurocentrism: An Afrocentric Response to Critics-Molefi Asante. Africa World Press, 2000
Dr. Asante combines cultural studies, linguistics, historiography, Kemetology, and Africology in this brilliant response to the critics of Afrocentricity. He demonstrates that the principal problem with the critics of Afrocentrics is their disbelief in the agency of Africans–that is the ability of Africans to create society, community, culture and civilization.
Asante challenges the basic arguments of the critics and reiterates the correctness of the Afrocentric vision for the African world.
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