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The Mis-Education of the Negro | [Carter Goodwin Woodson]

The Mis-Education of the Negro

Here is an unapologetic look into the factors that have caused so many Blacks to think and act in the negative way they do towards themselves and others. This timely body of work is from a man well versed in the American educational system, as well as educational systems throughout the world.
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Publisher's Summary

Here is an unapologetic look into the factors that have caused so many Blacks to think and act in the negative way they do towards themselves and others. This timely body of work is from a man well versed in the American educational system, as well as educational systems throughout the world. Dr. Carter G. Woodson was the second Black person to receive a Ph.D. from Harvard University after W. E. B. DuBois. He served as Dean of Education at both Howard and Morehouse universities. And he was over the entire educational system for Malaysia for three years.

Founder of Black History Month, Dr. Woodson would go on to write over 20 books detailing Negro history and life. His life story is as much of a classic as this monumental book.

©1933 Carter G. Woodson; (P)2007 Anthony Stewart

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  •  
    Theo Horesh Boulder, CO, United States 02-28-13
    Theo Horesh Boulder, CO, United States 02-28-13 Member Since 2010

    I am the author of two books on global issues, who listens to at least a hundred serious non-fiction books a year.

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    "A Classic and Unexpected Delight"

    Woodsin uses the question of how black people should be educated to cut to the core of some of the most important debates regarding African-American culture and identity. Some like Booker T. Washington believed black people should focus on learning technical trades. Others wanted black people to learn of classical culture as a means of attaining access to white culture. This debate involved questions of dignity: how might education be used to teach someone the inherent dignity of humanity. And to what extent might the sense of dignity be better acquired through the ability to support oneself through an independent trade.

    There are economic questions implicit within this debate to be sure. Learning technical trades might have provided black people with a route into the lower middle class in 1900, but Washington appears to have neglected the fact that just at the time he was advocating learning technical trades those trades were being mechanized. Meanwhile, a classical education may have been used to teach black people to think for themselves. It may have made them better preachers and teachers, the most common work roles amongst educated blacks at the time of writing. However, Woodsin points out the many ways such an education was being used merely to mimic educated white people and how it was failing to be used to help black people better understand themselves and the world in which they were enmeshed. Woodsin focuses much attention on the lack of initiative amongst blacks and the sources of failure of black run businesses. A major source of their failure was, in his opinion, their unrealistic expectations and lack of connection between mind and reality. Whereas they should have been asking themselves how they might increase the sales of a corner stand so as to open up several more, they were studying and trying to imitate the experiences of multi-national businesses. He saw the education black people were receiving at that time as doing almost nothing to prepare them for the sorts of small scale business endeavors in which they were most likely to engage.

    Ever-present are the questions of dignity and self-esteem. How is learning perverted in the quest to possess the status of being educated? How might education best teach us to learn? How might education bring the wealth that brings status? And what sort of status truly inspires a high self-regard? Woodsin emphasizes the importance of role models and knowing African and African-American history (he was the founder of African-American history month). He also appears to possess a strong intuitive sense of how education can be made useful. He comes at these questions and numerous others with a rare combination of social critic and exporter to success. This is the best of the American self-help tradition, though it is far deeper than the best of self-help literature.

    While the book was written in the early thirties, it is still highly relevant. It is semi-philosophical, semi-sociological. The tone is emphatic and searching. And it should be treated as one moment in the debate amongst W.E.B. Dubois (Souls of Black Folk) and Booker T. Washington (Up From Slavery). Though Woodsin may have been the comparative under-achiever (really an extreme over-achiever in his own right, being probably the best educated black American in his day), this struck me as the deepest of the three books. But why limit yourself to one; they are all very short, the three together being no longer than your average non-fiction audiobook. Having listened to each, you will come away with a deeper understanding, empathy, and respect for the Africa-American experience of achievement and some of the timeless challenges black leaders must continually confront. And best of all, you will be challenged to think, and you will be less willing to settle for easy answers.

    I read this book because it was a classic; I came away convinced it is a masterpiece.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mishonda MERIDIAN, MS, United States 11-18-12
    mishonda MERIDIAN, MS, United States 11-18-12
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    "outstanding!"
    What made the experience of listening to The Mis-Education of the Negro the most enjoyable?

    I read the book many times but it was refreashing to hear it this time.


    What other book might you compare The Mis-Education of the Negro to and why?

    One of a kind.


    Which character – as performed by Anthony Stewart – was your favorite?

    N/a


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Tried but needed more time.


    Any additional comments?

    Excellent. I already recommended the audio book to my friends.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anthony Atlanta, GA, USA 08-11-09
    Anthony Atlanta, GA, USA 08-11-09
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    "Excellent"

    A must read

    10 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Vincent. Akron, OH, United States 06-18-13
    Vincent. Akron, OH, United States 06-18-13 Member Since 2013
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    "Learned So much"

    This book is a must read for those that want to know where we came from. Yes it is one mans opinion to how we think and learn but I feel we all fall into some of the pit-falls of the past. I plan on reading and listening to this book over and over. I have a daughter in early childhood education and plan on sharing this book with her.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    B. Virginia, United States 11-09-14
    B. Virginia, United States 11-09-14 Member Since 2012

    Never live your life by committee...

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    "An Eye Opener"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would recommend this book as required reading for every black American. It clearly verbalize the issues we must overcome and the dangerous thinking that will for the most part keep a person in captivity.


    What did you like best about this story?

    How honest the writer was with the subject matter. Dr. Woodson gives a frank and honest look at how the American philosophy for success was never meant to be applied to the black man. Therefore the black man would have to create a foundation of their own.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    This book left me amazed, at how little we've changed over the 80 years since the writing of this book.


    Any additional comments?

    Read the BOOK...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shannon Edwards 04-10-14
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    "Didn't Get complete book"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    I love the book but it stops at chapter 16 and there are 18 chapters in the book fix this and I will give a better overall rating


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Mis-Education of the Negro?

    The entire book was memorable b/c I was so amazed and sadden by the fact the majority of the problems in a book written in 1933 still exist to this day.


    What does Anthony Stewart bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    His passion.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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