Ralph Bunche: Model Negro or American Other? (Paperback)Charles P. Henry (author)
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Activist, international statesman, reluctant black leader, scholar, icon, father and husband, Ralph Bunche is one of the most complicated and fascinating figures in the history of twentieth- century America. Bunche played a central role in shaping international relations from the 1940s through the 1960s, first as chief of the Africa section of the Office of Strategic Services and then as part of the State Department group working to establish the United Nations. After moving to the U.N. as Director of Trusteeship, he became the first black Nobel Laureate in 1950 and was subsequently named Undersecretary of the U.N.
For nearly a decade, he was the most celebrated contemporary African American both domestically and abroad. Today he is virtually forgotten.
Charles Henry's penetrating biography counters this historical tragedy, recapturing the essence of Bunche's service to America and the world. Moreover, Henry ably demonstrates how Bunche's rise and fall as a public symbol tells us as much about America as it does about Bunche. His iconic status, like that of other prominent, mainstream black figures like Colin Powell, required a constant struggle over the relative importance of his racial identity and his national identity. Henry's biography shines as both the recovered story of a classic American, and as a case study in the racial politics of public service.
Publisher: New York University Press
Number of pages: 299
Weight: 454 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 18 mm
"Thoughtful, provocative . . . a first-rate study."
"This work is a welcome addition to African American studies as well as to social and cultural history . . ."
"Not the least of this book's many virtues is the way in which . . . it bridges the gap between the concern's of Du Bois's day and those of the civil rights era."-Times Literary Supplement
"We need this book to remind us of the competent leadership that we enjoyed in the past."
-Black Issues Book Review
"A rich and moving account of the complex life of one of the most influential black figures in twentieth-century America."
-Herbert Hill,Evjue-Bascom Professor of African-American Studies, University of Wisconsin
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