Professor’s new book details lives of black journalists in the twentieth century

Professor’s new book details lives of black journalists in the twentieth century

Kennesaw State professor Fred Carroll recently published his book detailing the lives of black journalists and their fight for equality in time for Black History Month.

Starting in the 1920s, “Race News: Black Journalists and the Fight for Racial Justice in the Twentieth Century” traces the history of African American journalists and news coverage of momentous events in African American history.

“The details about how the alternative black press affected the commercial black press in the 1930s and in the civil rights era is not well known or documented and is quite exciting,” said “The African American Newspaper” author Patrick Washburn. “Carroll unquestionably adds important nuances to what other scholars have written in telling the history of the black press.”

Carroll is a former journalist and current lecturer of history at KSU. “Race News” is a combination of Carroll’s two interests and was recently published by the University of Illinois Press.

“I decided to focus on black journalism specifically once I discovered how I could make a substantive contribution to the study of the black press,” Carroll said. “Prior histories tended to focus on individual publishers, or individual newspapers, or moments when black journalists clashed with white authorities, particularly during the world wars.”

“I wanted to write a book that explained how black journalism as an industry evolved politically and professionally across the 20th century,” he continued. “I wanted to paint on a bigger canvas.”

Carroll explains “Race News” as an examination of “the relationship between the commercial black press — mainstream weekly newspapers like the Baltimore Afro-American, Chicago Defender, Pittsburgh Courier — and the alternative black press, which included publications like Marcus Garvey’s ‘Negro World’ in the 1920s and the Black Panther Party’s ‘The Black Panther’ in the 1960s.”

Fellow author Bill Mullen described Carroll’s book as “a thorough, well-researched, lively, and accessible account of the role of the black press in the 20th century.”

Carroll said he hopes that this new book will be well received within his field and will be used as a reference for scholars studying black journalism.

As for Carroll’s future as a writer, he has already begun brainstorming a second book on black journalism in the civil rights era. “Race News: Black Journalists and the Fight for Racial Justice in the Twentieth Century” is currently for sale on Amazon.com.

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