Ebony & Ivy Author Craig Steven Wilder to Speak at Revolution Books
Author Craig Steven Wilder will speak at Revolution Books on Tuesday, March 18th at 7:00 PM. A leading historian of race and African American culture, Wilder will discuss his latest book, Ebony & Ivy, released September 17th, 2013. Ebony & Ivy examines the role racism played in the history of some of America’s most prestigious universities. Harvard, Yale, Princeton and others exploited slaves to build and sustain themselves, while simultaneously serving as laboratories of racist thought. Slavery and racism, Wilder demonstrates, tarnish the legacy of even those institutions Americans perceive as bastions of liberalism.
Revolution Books, located at 146 West 26th Street, is one of the foremost independently-owned book stores in New York City. Dedicated to the cause of peaceful revolution developed by Bob Avakian, Revolution Books seeks to foster a clear understanding of the historical oppression that makes change so necessary. It is the ideal venue for a scholar like Wilder.
Wilder’s book has received considerable acclaim and publicity. The Allegra di Bonaventura of the Wall Street Journal writes:
“It is Mr. Wilder’s vast and often seemingly banal catalog of mercantile transactions, charitable bequests, and academic and administrative appointments — all links in the chain that joins universities to slavery — that lends the book its disturbing power... a passionate recounting of the collective dehumanization of African-Americans coincident with the rise in power and prestige of the Atlantic college, particularly the Ivy League.”
A brief excerpt from Ebony and Ivory provides a tantalizing glimpse of its tone and subject matter:
“1830: Harvard was approaching its two hundredth anniversary, which meant that it was also nearing the bicentennial of its intimate engagement with Atlantic slavery. Beginning with the first graduating class, boys from Cambridge had been seeking fortunes in the plantations. By the time Henry Watson matriculated, Harvard’s history was inseparable from the history of slavery and the slave trade…”
Finally, here’s a little bit of information on Craig Steven Wilder himself:
Craig Steven Wilder is professor of American history at MIT, and has taught at Williams College and Dartmouth College. Wilder grew up in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood is the author of A Covenant with Color and In the Company of Black Men.
Excerpts and bio courtesy of Revolution Books. Check out their website for more info on this and other upcoming events.