Thursday, August 6, 2009
Harlem vs. Columbia
Stefan Bradley's recently released Harlem vs. Columbia University: Black Student Power in the Late 1960s will be one of the first orders we'll place this year as we continue building our Black Studies library.
Professor Bradley taught in the department of historical studies here at SIUE before moving to St. Louis University. Since he's right across the river, he's been a frequent supporter and contributor to our projects. Most notably for me, his fresh perspectives on 1960s activism, 21st century black nationalism, and African American ideas and experience in general have been crucial to how I've envisioned Black Studies.
Harlem vs. Columbia focuses on "the impact of Black Power ideology on the Students' Afro-American Society (SAS) at Columbia." In particular, the book describes how groups of black students and community activists organized to prevent an Ivy League institution from constructing a gym in Morningside Park and "trampling over its relatively poor and powerless neighbors."
According to historian Leonard N. Moore, Harlem vs. Columbia constitutes a "powerful story that needs to be told. Bradley places the student movement at Columbia in the 1960s within the larger context of local black politics and concerns, exploring the links between campus activism, community protest, and public policy."