Shelter in a Time of Storm: How Black Colleges Fostered Generations of Leadership and Activism

Univ. of North Carolina. Apr. 2019. 368p. illus. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9781469648330. $29.95; ebk. ISBN 9781469648347. ED
OrangeReviewStarFavors (history, Clayton State Univ.) is passionate about his subject—the role of historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) in fostering black activism—and his larger theme of eradicating racism in America and fulfilling the promise of democracy. The author presents the emergence of activism on seven campuses in five states, from the mid-19th century to the present. With the end of slavery resulting in Jim Crow oppression rather than full citizenship, black Americans looked to their colleges to foster racial consciousness that by the 1950s and 1960s led to the civil rights and Black Power movements moving toward a more just society. Favors has extensively researched personal papers, journals, and college archives to portray the individuals and organizations that effected change. He shows how university leaders nurtured their students and their dreams while sometimes tamping down their imprudent militancy. The author expresses hope for the continuing impact of HBCUs yet recognizes that opportunities for black faculty and students at predominately white institutions and generations of underfunding threaten the future of HBCUs.
VERDICT This vivid exploration of an important topic is a must-read for anyone interested in higher education and HBCUs in particular.
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