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Stony the Road by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Stony the Road

Stony the Road by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
Apr 02, 2019 | 320 Pages
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    Apr 02, 2019 | 320 Pages

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    Apr 02, 2019 | 320 Pages

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“In Stony the Road, Gates demonstrates his chops as a lyrical narrative historian.  He surveys an era full of pain and loss but also human persistence and astonishing cultural renewal in African American life.  Reconstruction and its long aftermath down to the 1920s was a series of revolutions and counter-revolutions and Gates’s success here is in telling it as a moving and complex story about politics, science, art, and ideas all wrapped in one form after another of racism, managed and blunted by resistance. White supremacy triumphs in this long dark era; it left many casualties along the by-ways of America’s worst sins. But this is a work that shows that good history can also rise up as a redemption song when we know the facts of what happened and why and how people endure, thrive and create their own new worlds.” —David W. Blight, Yale University, and author of Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom
“In this insightful, provocative book, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., reminds us how the hopes inspired by emancipation and Reconstruction were dashed by a racist backlash, and how a new system of inequality found cultural expression in Lost Cause mythology and degrading visual images of African Americans. With debate raging over how we should remember the Confederacy, and basic rights again under threat, this unflinching look at our history could not be more timely.” —Eric Foner, DeWitt Clinton Professor Emeritus of History, Columbia University, and author of Reconstruction: America’s Unfinished Revolution and the forthcoming The Second Founding: How the Civil War and Reconstruction Remade the Constitution

 “How does white supremacy work? What does it look like? In this piercing, haunting study, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., chronicles an American tragedy, the story of how white supremacy and Jim Crow became the South’s—and white America’s—brutal answer to Emancipation and Reconstruction. Who has best dismantled white supremacy, and how? Gates tells those powerful stories, too, from Frederick Douglass to Ida B. Wells to W. E. B. DuBois, through generations of New Negroes, and New, New Negroes, battling back, in struggles not yet ended.” —Jill Lepore, author of These Truths: A History of the United States
Stony the Road, a must-read post Reconstruction history from one of the foremost historians of our time, proves that the past can be prologue. It is the history we are doomed to repeat if we remain unwilling to build a democracy at peace with itself in America, a democracy that respects the dignity and worth of every human being.”  —Rep. John Lewis

“Drawing on the finest current scholarship, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., offers a chilling account of Reconstruction’s overthrow and the rise of American apartheid. His book then forcefully recasts the rise of the concept of the New Negro as a weapon in the war against a resurgent white racism and the phantasmagoria of Jim Crow popular culture that was all too real and all too pervasive. As elements of that culture persist, Stony the Road is all the more timely.” —Sean Wilentz, author of Bancroft Prize winner The Rise of American Democracy

“In [Gates’s] signature lucid and compelling approach to history . . . a fresh, much-needed inquiry into a misunderstood yet urgently relevant era.” — Booklist, starred review

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